The 5K, 10K, and Marathon of Blogging

Ross Johnson's picture
Instructor
11/5/2013
Blog

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So you've all had a few months to start your blog, write some posts and identify your goals for blogging. Hopefully, you've seen some results already. If not, hang in there. I've been blogging since 1996 (with large gaps in-between.) Now that I'm approaching twenty years of blogging (yikes) the biggest lesson I can pass on is related to pace and motivation.

When I started blogging it was easy. Much like a 5K (in running terms) it was a little uncomfortable, but with a couple hours of focus I could get a post out completed. As the years went on, my standards increased. Where it would previously take me two hours to write a post, it then took me four. Not only was it harder to come up with ideas on what to write about, the ideas I did have were more in depth and complex.

These days it takes me the better part of a month to get a blog post out. Between the research, planning, citing, writing and rewriting-- finishing a single post feels like a never ending task. But I've kept with it. I've realized that blogging is like a marathon. You need to learn how to conserve your energy, plan ahead and work to stay motivated. In my experience, it's been worth it. Blogging has helped my career, helped chronicle my life and even led to my wife and I meeting.

How has your blogging experience been thus far? Have you seen gains? Do you feel motivated to write blog posts or does it feel like unnecessary work?


Comments & Feedback

Student

My blogging experience has ben very rewarding thus far. I have learned what it takes to capture the attention of others and promote important information for college students transitioning into their professional careers. Lately, I have been feeling motivated to write in my blog. However, I would be lying to you if I said it wasn’t challenging with all my schoolwork, campus job, and being a senior on top of it all, I NEED A REAL LIFE JOB.  So its not really unnecessary work, it’s just “busy work” that I do not have a lot of right now.

Student

I've actually enjoyed blogging much more than I thought I would! My major hurdle is just making time for it. I want to post regularly (my goal is 2-3 times a week), but it often falls to the bottom of my to-do list with class and work. I want to be motivated, but I find myself falilng behind. However, when inspiration for a blog post comes to me, I really enjoy writing and designing the post. It is a little disappointing when I don't get many visits, followers, or comments, though. I have been looking closely into the analytics that Wordpress offers (what search terms directed to blog posts, what tags generated the most views), and trying to apply those to increase views. I am looking forward to getting nto a routine, and continuing to grow my blog. It's been fun!

Student

I have a blog but I never using the blog since I learn new media driver’s license. I write different type of the blog, sample and interesting, and I focus other blog, and follow it. Always learn some interested information from others. They use the blog every day; whatever insight and decorate, enter their blog is enjoy and willing to read more. After I using, I can find lot of my friends here and connect to our professor. To be honesty, internet can collect all news and media information from all over the world. Blog can collect what your age to learn and to follow, when some author post their thesis on their blog, other people can write their comment below this blog, different people have the different opinion, and you can easy to see the different opinions. Friends and professors around you to have the different experience and interesting news you ever heard, you can learn from this. Blogs not only to have these benefit, but also more tools you can use, for example, upload the picture, writing about your experience, share with your mood, even find jobs. Furthermore, there is one point should everyone knows that you cannot put your details and people around you the secret post on the blog. This is so important to protect yourself. Blog it is helpful for me and I will keep going to using that, I want to meet more people from bolg.

Student

I think comparing blogging to a marathon is a great anology. Personally, ive never blogged prior to this class and after starting my own account i can see wbere people lose steam with it. Constanly having to stay on top of the current topics and news while still appealing to peoples tastes. Currently I have none seen much gain with my blogging account but I cant say I have exorted that much effort into it. I feel with a little effort and some creativity I could be a great blogger.

Student

I have learned that consistency is everything. More people will read your blog when you post on a regular basis. At a PRSSA (Public Relations Student Socierty of America) meeting, we had a blogger come and speak with us about her fashion blog. This showed me some of the perks of blogging. It also inspired me to start a new blog (coming soon) with another theme. I am developing some content for that blog first before I put it online so that it can seem full. It's hard to start with nothing. 

Student

My blogging experience has been pretty up and down. I find myself suddenly struck with inspiration for a post, but when I begin to write the magic of the idea is lost. It takes 100% focus for me to complete a post. I understand the comparison of blog writing and a 5K - you must prepare yourself beforehand and pace yourself throughout. I have seen gains in the sense that I am challenging myself and my writing, but my blog has not received much attention. Because writing for my blog is such a challenge most of the time, I do not have much motivation to sit down and work on a post. The most important lesson I have learned from blogging that I can apply to other aspects of my life is that it is better to post nothing at all than something that isn't high in quality. Blogs are a direct reflection of the writer, therefore you must maintain your integrity and credibility as a blogger.

Student

When I was in the middle school, I started to own my first blog. It was the blog which connect with the chatting app such as MSN. The reason that support me to use the blog was there were many friends which also using the same app with me. I used like to post some journals when I was in high school. But now I prefer to post pictures of my daily life. In recent years, the blog has more tools which are convenient to our life. We can follow some bloggers who will post the news, fashion pictures, menus, and academic article and so on. I think the blog is a really useful thing that everyone should have one.

Student

I started my first blog when I was in middle school. It was like an online diary to record what I thought and what I learned from everyday experience. Sometimes I wrote pretty long, and sometimes I wrtoe very short, just several sentences. At that time, I didn't intend to make money from blogging. I just started to learn that many people used blogging to make money by each click through the ad banner in their blogs. And my blog did attract some response and followers, but I was in a small circle of bloggers who almost wrote about the same theme. 

When I began to start a blog because of new media driver's licence, I wrote blog for a different reason- to write for others. So I need to pay attention to attractin traffic to the blog, focus on settings that guarantee the most readable, eye-catching effect. Because this blog is assumed to run for online marketing, content is everything. So I need to polish carefully each of my posts. In this blog, I received some comments and compliments, and even someone asking for suggestions for building a blog. I'm not saying that I gain success in running a blog (in fact I'm far behind being successful), but I get motivated to continue the blog.

Student

My blogging experience has been challenging thus far. I have actually started a few blogs over the past couple years, and I always get really motivated to write a post or two and then I just get too busy and fall off the blogging wagon. Unfortunately I have not seen gains this time around, the same thing happened where I became very motived at first and then I just got busy and less motivated. I think I need to do a couple things in order to be a more regular and effective blogger. First, I need to lower my expectations. Most of the blogs I read are professional bloggers who blog every day so that's what I try to do. The problem is, that isn't very realistic so I soon get discouraged and fall off the wagon. I need to make more realistic blogging goals, like blogging once a week or twice a month and shoot for that. Another thing I need to do is just make blogging a habit, just like brushing my teeth or doing my homework. I have heard that if you do something 21 times it becomes a habit, I think I need to push myself for the first 21 blog posts until it becomes a habit. As I approach my last semester of college, a blog is really something that I would like to have in place in order to showcase my writing skills and my expertise in a few subjects to potential employers. 

Student

My biggest problem with blogging is find new ideas and fresh content to write. I’ve sometimes come up with an idea that I think its great and after doing some research online I find out that there are tons of people doing the same thing. I guess the problem now days its that its so easy to find information online and most of the information that I get its form other blogs. You can not be one of those guys that just repeat what everyone already know. I try to put as much of my spin on my blog post and I’m forcing myself to do those every week. I do agree with you its hard in the beginning. I try to write about what I like this makes it easier but its hard to be original on the sea of other bloggers writing about the same thing.

Student

Before starting this class, it never cross my mind to start a blog, couple of my friends had one but I was never interested in starting one. I never thought it could be interesting, it was even hard for me to use facebook and have a daily basis post, I have had a twitter for more than three years and I have never been successful on posting and I just didn't know what I wanted people to know about me or what I wanted to tell them. After starting one on this class and I have been learning how I can have successful blogs, what people are interested on and that the most important part of these social media is content, everything has got easier for me, I opened a blog of what I am interested on and trying to give content to my followers. I know I am not the best writter, but I know I will become better as I kepp writting.

Student

I have been meaning to start a blog since I was a 19, but never got around to it.  The main reason is- although I feel I have great advice and a witty outlook, who would really be that interested in hearing my every thought? I guess I felt blogs were a tad pompous “hey look how important I am!!.” That has changed a little during this class—mainly I think I am afraid to fail at anything so starting something new is always intimidating. I haven’t seen many comments on my few posts but I know I could give it more effort.  This class has been a good primer for giving me more confidence to start a blog on my own My personal website.  I like blogging because it’s not formal writing— which is something I have struggled with.  I like to write what pops into my brain and let it flow, not take hours to craft a strategic post (guess PR isn’t for me).  With my PR writing class this semester I must say I am starting to improve.  I feel blogging for a fashion-enthusiasts is beneficial towards my career, a friend of mine got an internship with Teen Vogue after they saw how she kept up with her blog (along with the effort she put forward).  In the fashion world a blog is almost necessary with your portfolio and resume.   That is what pushed me to make my own personal webpage, and I get more page views than I ever thought I would.  By linking all my social media back to my webpage I get lots of curious visitors and hiring managers.

A picture from a blog shoot I did this summer.

 

 

 

Student

My blogging experience has been interesting thus far.  I have enjoyed posting because I enjoy writing, and this is a new medum for me to express myself through words.  I have really liked being able to post about things of interest to me, and it has been a fun introduction into the world of blogging.  However, I do not feel overly motivated to write blog posts.  I haven't recieved the feedback that I originally hoped I would, and this has sort of put a halt to my motivation to write.  To me, a community experience is the best thing about blogging and I just have not felt that with my blog thus far.  But, like you said, blogging is a marathon not a sprint.  So hopefully as I stick with it, I will begin to develop that sense of community with people that read my blog and other bloggers.

Student

Before I take this class, "New Meida Drivers License", I was not a person who was interested in social network services. I could use one social media, Facebook only. Therefore, this is the first experience that I created a blog and posted some stories. Everything is unfamiliar, but it is good that I can communicate with many people through blogging. However, honestly, I do not feel motivated much to write my stories on my blog. In my opinion, not everyone has to enjoy sharing one's stories publicly. And I do not like that if someone write my name on Google, they can see my personal information through the blog. Although I made my blog for this class, it does not work necessarily for me. However, it would be good if I do some business and promote my works to the public. Therefore, this experience learning how to create a blog and blog posts would be helpful for me in the future. 

Student

Honestly- Blogging isn't turning out to be "my thing." I love social media, please understand that, but for as excited I was to start this blog, I thought i'd eventually get the hang of consistantly posting. Errrrr- wrong! Just like how I have difficulties keeping up on my homework, I started to assocaited me updating my blog to work, not fun. How sad. I even really liked my idea! I think that maybe, eventually, if I can find a topic that I REALLY REALLY connect with, I can succesfully keep up a blog lol But for now, dont let my hard time keeping up deter you from my excellent writing skills, i'm actually pretty funny.

Student

So far my blogging experience has been good. I enjoy writing my posts when I have a topic to talk about—emphasis on the “when I have a topic to talk about."Blogging is easy and fun when for me when I have something to say. The times I actually have something to say are the times that I am motivated to blog. If I had to come up with new and interesting content every day or even every other day, I doubt that content would be very interesting at all and in these instances I feel that blogging would feel like unnecessary work. From my blog for this class, the only gains I have seen are a bunch of spam comments. I think that to see better results, I would need to blog more and on more interesting topics but I just don’t have a lot of spare time to do this.

 

Student

I started my first blog when I was a high school student, and I wrote about one post per week at weekend to share some ideas about the movies I watched. Like many new blogger, I was excited about even one more comments or one more visit. However, then I found out it was really hard to keep blogging regularly, and finally I stopped updating anymore. In this NMDL course, I started my first blog in English, and I think this is a fresh start to learn how to blogging strategically and effectively. Unlike my very first blog, now I try to integrate all my social media platforms under a similar topic. For example, when I have a new idea I will first tweet it or post it on Facebook with several sentences. Then when I have enough time, I will turn this idea into an in-depth post on my WordPress blog. In this way, I think all my social media platforms could bring traffic to each other. What's more, I also had a chance to practice what I learn from NMDL course, such as SEO by using keyword-rich content or writing. Now I pay more attention to the content in my blog, but there is still one thing I cannot guarantee: the consistency. As Michael Hyatt once said in a video, "Consistency works better than Frequency', I think the next thing I need to do improve my blog in this aspect.

Student

Before I enrolled in the social media class, I had created a BlogSpot hoping to express my opinions to the world. I didn’t have much knowledge about blogs then. My other challenge was access to the internet. Since internet is still expensive in my country, I could rarely visit the blog. In the end, I could not publish as I had thought.

 I found the issue of blogs very interesting and the New Media class has improved my understanding of blogs. The use of Google analytics was very fascinating as I could check how many people who have visited my blog even there geographic locations and the languages they speak. I was surprised to see that my blog had been read by people from South Africa, Zimbabwe and USA. I have seen that there are a lot of opportunities that can be brought by blogs. After posting an article about HootSuite on my blog, some people who I did not even know contacted me saying they had seen my article. We started having conversations online, sharing information that might be helpful in my life. I realized that blogging can actually be a way to enhance job opportunities.  However, my challenge was that I wasn’t able to post frequently as I had supposed due to the schedules. I also learnt that when I first created my blog, I did not carefully selected a topic of interest, making it hard to write posts. With the experience that I now have, I will start a new blog where I will blog things related to my career plans.

Student

Blogging is interesting. This was my first feeling when I touched the social media tool. However, as what you’ve pointed out, it is very hard to keep dedicating yourself into blogging. Through the blogging process, content innovation is a vital problem. As time passed by, I think I’m starting to lose energy to write thorough posts. Thus, it maybe easy to create simple posts to express your opinions and get instant feedbacks, however, when you read more about others’ blogs, you want to improve yours too. Therefore, the workload as well as work difficulty significantly increases. As a result, I may feel tired to develop detailed and well-written posts. Blog is an influential tool for niched groups. Therefore, if you are the opinion leader or the mainstay of the field, it should be relatively easy to post qualified contents. If you just post a blog for fun, you will find that you gradually can not catch the quality of others’ posts. For this point, my opinion is also that you should keep blogging and try to motivate yourself again. The marathon metaphor is very suitable for blogging because you should always re-allocated all the resources you have, such as energy, pace, beats, and etc. All in all, whatever you think about blogging, you should keep it as a hobby to better understand people surrounding you. Blog is a great tool, we should always take advantages form it, and enjoy the nature of blogging.

 

Student

Blogging to me before this semester really did not mean a thing. I never actually thought about the idea of making my own blog or reviewing other people's blogs. After reading and doing research on blogging, I think it is a fun way to get your ideas and beliefs out there for others to enjoy! It is also a good way for me to research different subjects and fields that I am interested in to get a better knowledge and see other people's views on it.

Student

When I first started blogging I thought the concept was strange and it was all new to me. But the more I started learning more about the topic I wanted to blog about it became more familiar. I think it's a cool concept how you express your thoughts on whatever you believe in. I think it's also cool to connect with other bloggers and read about what they believe in. Since we have started blogging, I have become more attached to many more blogs and it keeps me interested and makes me want to continue blogging more! 

Student

When I first started blogging I enjoyed how I could get my thoughts out on paper and have people respond to my feelings on an issue.  Originally, I did feel motivated to write blog posts and keep up with my blogging. However, now I am not as motivated to blog and do not think about it as much. I would like to blog more though and think it would be something that would I would enjoy. I think blogging is something that takes time and something that I would need to get used to. Blogging would help my career and writing skills. It is something that I could show employers and add to my resume. Blogging is something I would like to become more confident in to gain experience. 

 

Student

Last spring, I started a different blog for another class. It was a blog to express my creativity. I would post things that inspired me, art I created, and even things I found funny. In the beginning, I felt motivated to write in my blog a few times a week. However, after about a month, I seemed to have lost interest and the posts became more of a homework assignment than a hobby. This year, with the blog I created for this class, I feel like writing the blog posts are unnecessary work. I enjoy reading other people's blogs, but I do not feel like my life is interesting enough to write a blog about. I also do not have the patience to sit down and write posts for hours on end. I would much rather get outside and run or spend time physically doing things than sit at a computer and blog.

Student

For me, I am not a blog lover. However, I used to blog for several years before, which was really based on my interest. In that time, the motivation for me is to share what I like with friends. Blog to me is a way of communication and connection to people I would like to share information. Nowadays, the competition between blogs increased a lot since people found out blog can be used not only in personal social networking but also used in business approach. In this way, bloggers only want to share information are hard to attach audience once audience are widespreaded. I don't like blogging because I am not a person who is good at memorizing extra stuff. Updating my blog is an extra assisgnment for me. Moreover, English is not my primary language which means I need to translate my true feeling into English. In this way, the audience is not the group I really want to share with. Also, the ideas and thoughts are not as accurate as  I used to post in my mother-tongue. On the other hand, I used social networking website, apps, or other approach really frequent. Because I am the person who used to talk and connect to friends a lot. Even blogging is not my type, I still tried to post stuff on it. Because doing good on it for my assignment is also required. Indeed, I am not frequently blogging, I still found out the potential of using blog to attract audience and even used in business. Many methods, search optimization, relate positive and negative keyword and others, do a great job to pull audience to the blog. 

Student

This semester is my first ever experience with blogging. I have never created a blog, or even thought about creating a blog until I was assigned to do so. After listening to what was said in lecture when we first started, and after reading your blog post above, I can see where the more involved you get, the more time, effort, strategy, and dedication it takes to be successful.

My experience thus far has been enjoyable, however, was I not assigned to do it, I wouldn't have. In addition, I can almost guarantee I will not continue after this class is over. There are a few reasons for this that I will get to in a moment. Overall, the experience has been relatively positive, but just not for me.

I have not seen any gains from blogging aside from receiving completion credit for this class. I have shared my blog on social media to which no one has paid any attention, I have promoted my blog on a few other blogs to which I have not received any attention. I am not disappointed by this, it is merely a fact, and nothing more than I expected.

I do not feel motivated to write blog posts, and it does feel like unncecessary work. The only motivation I have is to get a grade, which I am fine with.

The reason I feel that blogging is just not for me, is that I do not feel like I NEED other people to read my thoughts and opinions on the internet. I am not a shy person with my views, beliefs, thoughts, and opinions in public, and therefore do not require validation for them on the internet. Of all social media, Facebook is my only chosen site, and even then, I only have it to stay connected. I share quick thoughts and feelings on Facebook, and whether I get responses or not does not really matter to me, because I know people see it. Facebook can be considered "mini-blogging" I suppose. It requires almost no effort, and the responses are usually faster and more direct. I don't have the time or desire to blog, but this does not mean I don't see it as a great tool or hobby for others.

Ross Johnson's picture
Instructor
11/5/2013
Blog