Two Cents Tuesday: (Some) Blogs Get Better with Age

in Editor's Corner

Ye Old Cheshire Cheese (P1000322)

Photo Credit: swh (flickr)

“Patience is a virtue, possess it if you can. Seldom in a woman, never in a man.” — Origin is debated.

Don’t stone me. I didn’t make that saying up, guys. :)

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile and if you have downloaded and read [intlink id=”3376″ type=”page”]Blog Eat Blog[/intlink] (hint), you may notice this thing I have about blogs that have “been around.” It’s my belief that you shouldn’t compare your success to theirs if your blog is new.

New bloggers with big aspirations come out of the gate with fury today, buying expensive books and subscriptions to this or that, with promises that by tomorrow, they will experience the incredible growth and reach of blogs like ProBlogger and Copyblogger. (If you haven’t you ought to read Oni Bamidele’s post that analyzes five top blogs. He’s spot on.)

Thoughts On Instantaneous Authority

It CAN happen. If you don’t believe me, check out, or Those blogs are under a year old and their reader engagement levels are enviable. I honestly believe that some bloggers just got it. They just do. Something about their writing styles and promotion strategies and confidence levels has such mass appeal that it’s like trying to walk through glue. You can’t. You land on their blog and then you are totally consumed and a reader for life (or at least, I am).

Thing is, that thing doesn’t always happen instantly, and even Jean of VirginBloggerNotes will say that she has learned an awful lot in this time, and both of them probably have long-term plans for continued growth. There is something to be said about longevity and experience. There is also something to be said about figuring it out over time. In the Blog Eat Blog guide, I take you back a few years to when Copyblogger first started. You might be surprised to know that on Day 1, the blog wasn’t getting 100+ blog comments with every post and didn’t have 100,000 subscribers. Really? Yes, really.

That blog, like all of the long-standing ones, has grown over time – significantly. And now, it’sĀ formidable. Few copy writing blogs are going to be able to stand up against it. Now, not only does it have the high quality writing it always has had, but it has a fierce and loyal readership that will be difficult to contend with. For the foreseeable future, bloggers everywhere will be constantly referring to and linking to Copyblogger, sending its authority into the sky.

Compare, Contrast, Emulate

If you are going to compare your blog to others, at least compare in the right way. Here’s how:

  • Find blogs that you would like to emulate. To emulate does not mean to copy. Don’t bother trying to be another them. Not only is it impossible, but what will happen is that at the most, your blog will be like a cheap alternative. Like grocery store branded cereal. It never tastes quite the same.
  • Understand their growth patterns. This is key. The best way to get where someone is now, is to look at where they have been. Study them. Note similarities and differences. Figure out where they were when they were your “age.” What were the promotion techniques? What types of posts were they publishing? Read About pages, review Archives, and pay attention to popular posts, as well.
  • Do as they did. Don’t be too literal about that. Again, it’s not about copying. However, you can’t expect to experience the growth and authority of your ideal blogs if you run the other way. That’s illogical. Tip: if a blogger you like and would like to emulate puts out some sort of tool or resource that details how they got to where they are, it’s probably a good idea that you buy it and eat it up.

Maybe I’m Nuts

Perhaps I’m off-base here and it’s totally pointless to say that time and patience are two big ingredients to success. After all, some of the best selling material out there is about how to become successful RIGHT NOW. No one wants to wait anymore, it seems. It seems sometimes that instantaneous success is far more attractive than the lessons learned through growth. I don’t know. I’m a wine drinker. I happen to prefer things with age (wine… cheese… men – whoops :)).

What do YOU think?

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