What is that smell?

Welcome to #997 in the series from the ‘invisible blogger’; please sit back and enjoy the read….. mom, and yes you can click ‘like’ as well………

As I kick around in this vast universe called social media and twitter specifically; I have started to notice some patterns. Maybe it is relegated to my small world, but patterns nonetheless.

This is just an observation and by no means a dig; I admire the people who are able to blog not only on a consistent basis, but with quality content as well.

My big question is, is it better to stay on schedule and provide your regular post even if it way less than stellar; or should you just wait until one of your better efforts?

You’re out there, you have developed a following of ‘who’s who’ and they are all invited for dinner. Unfortunately, you lay a big fat turd (pardon my French…………what, that’s not French; well, a pretty strong visual, huh?).

Oh, you put a little garnish around it and serve it up with a cold beverage, but it is what it is. Your esteemed group is thinking ‘what is that smell’, but these are all your buds, they don’t want to call you out; they are too polite.

Finally, someone says ‘how unique’ and then others chime in. In fact, why don’t you come over to my house and I will share this with all my friends. You get a few ‘ohs and ahs’ and the next thing you know you have over 50 responses. You are thinking maybe it wasn’t so bad after all.

You’ve established your reputation and people expect a really good meal at your place; they are thinking ‘well, let’s give him/her the benefit of the doubt’ they are fun to be with anyway.

If it happens again, will you speak up this time? Or, will you just remain silent and not come back?

Because of all the time and effort you have put in to reach this level, do you expect people to hang with you even if you are dropping clunkers? After all, you supported them didn’t you?

Will bad content eventually drive someone away? What if it’s not bad, just the same old stuff recycled? Is it easy to disappear or do you owe this person loyalty?

You have supported them and they have supported you; what is the right thing to do, speak up, disappear, or act like it’s the best meal you’ve ever had?

Just askin’…………..


40 thoughts on “What is that smell?

  1. Agree! There is way too much garbage out there. I try to keep things on a level of good information, not just something to tweet. And if I don’t I hope those tweeters out there will tell me.

  2. Well, well, well………look who dropped by. As you can see, very basic and still trying to figure out a direction. I like some of the stuff they are doing at BGN and it has given me some ideas.

    The main thing is, there is so much out there where do you decide to concentrate because you certainly can’t do it all.

    Thanks for the comment, and we’ll just have to see where this takes me, huh?

  3. Bill, I struggle with this. I can’t publish something unless I’m in love with it. This has seen me completely reworking a post at 9:30 at night (when I was on my way to bed and suddenly “knew” it wasn’t good) and completing the revision first thing in the morning. I don’t want to just put stuff out there; I want to put my BEST out there!

    When you squeeze an orange, you get orange juice but if that orange has gone sour, don’t eat it and don’t serve it to someone else. I guess it’s up to the blogger. I’m setting my bar high with these statements, but that makes it more fun because it keeps me on my toes!

    Way to stir the pot Bill!

    • I agree, but the sensitive side of me never wants to see any of my friends not getting responses for whatever reason. Therefore, I am more apt to at least stop by and offer support.

      I can’t imagine I would ever tell someone they published something marginal.

      There have been some posts I have not responded to because it wasn’t an area of interest or I didn’t think I could offer intelligent commentary and you can only be a clown for so long, right.

      Thanks for dropping by Ms Lori, it is very much appreciated.

      It’s getting kind of scary and exciting people are actually reading these……I’m thinking I better start thinking about my focus and direction pretty soon.

  4. Bill,

    Great question and valid points. Here’s what I have done. When I first started blogging I used to post 5 days a week. I love to write so it came easy. Then I started to notice that all of my great writing was not getting read and every new post buried it deeper and deeper into the site. So I adjusted and dropped my schedule down to one where I can get maximum exposure and allows me to put my best foot forward.

    The best thing about blogging especially when you are just getting started is there are no rules. Post as much as you would like to. When you get larger then you lose some of that flexibility because your readers are expecting you to produce. So I just fill up the backlogs. I have written enough post to cover me for a month if I didn’t want to write.

    So do the best you can and only push publish if it is worth reading. There is my two cents. (I will need that money back. We are in recession.)

    • One cent; there are handling charges after all….

      Good to see you again Frank and thanks for dropping by. I need to get back to yours and get on your e-mail list. I was very impressed with your writing and sense of humor.

      Like you, I have ‘some’ in back up which allow me to fine tune and revise. I do know all my stuff won’t be ‘epic’ but if it’s genuine then I guess it is what it is, right.

      Half the time hese great topics pop in my head that I want to build a subject around but forget to write them down and then it’s gone. I probably should record it on my phone when that thought arrives.

      I appreciate your input and it appears you have a nice model. As this gets traction, I need to start focusing on my direction and game plan.

      So good to see you again.

    • I too adjusted my frequency Frank! I started with 3X/week and went down to 2. It feels better this way. And like you I have posts started and in various stages of “finished” for up to a month ahead!
      Great minds thinking alike! 😉

    • No joke Frank! LOL This just works best for me! This afternoon, for instance, I was polishing (translation: making actually publishable!) about five posts that are coming up! I can’t imagine doing it any other way!
      Have a great weekend!

      • I think it’s good to have a ‘stockpile’ you can refer to, revise, put on hold, etc. Sometimes it’s best to get it on paper when it’s fresh in your mind.

  5. Hi Bill

    I only post once a week. Cos a lot of people coming over to my blog are getting new information (for them) I figure that is plenty to take in.

    Sometimes I go 2 weeks if not got what I want to publish. My friend Murray over at Murlu.com shared about this awhile back. His take on the topic was that if/when we publish daily or whatever, that there isn’t the time to take in all the information.

    He was encouraging less posts and letting information sink in. Also if I’m reading a biz blog I need time to implement whatever I’ve read. Otherwise get information overload!

    I used to go visit newbies sites and encourage them even if their posts were left wanting. However, can only do that for so long. Time constraints and building a business as well as if people ask for help then ignore the advice, why would I continue to visit??!!

    The friends I relate to now all have quality blogs and I learn heaps from them. If I go to a blog where things are said I don’t agree with or there is information being given I can’t embrace, I just don’t go back.

    If it happens to be a friends blog, just wouldn’t comment on that post. Depending who it is and how well I know them, may send them a DM. Haven’t had to yet so don’t know how I would handle it.

    And I definitely don’t post just for the sake of it. Would soon lose people’s interest if I did that 😉

    Patricia Perth Australia

    • Hello Patricia, thanks so much for dropping by.

      This has been an interesting wk for me to say the least, but I think it has allowed me to focus in on a direction to pursue.

      I think the eye-opener was Griddy’s post this wk; whereas I have been yucking it up with all these people I am nowhere close to being ready to go ‘public’. I wasn’t comfortable giving Griddy my ‘blog’ info and Brankica jokingly called me out for even being there. It did give me pause for thought….

      I think I just link my post to comments to get ocassional feedback but I’m not really trying to drive people here yet. There have been a few who are just nice people and keep throwing this ol’ dog a bone though……:)

      I haven’t seen any really bad posts, but I have gotten half way thru some and start thinking ‘this doesn’t interest me and I really don’t have anything to say’. Therefore, I probably won’t comment.

      However, I have met some people who are really serious about this but just getting started; they might post something really good but get few replies. I try to support them any way I can.

      Stacey @MyLifestyleMax had a super post this wk about time management as you develop your network. I know you have struggled with it at times and probably have figured it out, but it would be worth the look. I need to be more disciplined with it. I might have to limit the people I actively engage with.

      Good to see you, thanks for the comments and best of luck on your continued journey.

  6. Hi Bill!

    Well you certainly do put out there all those things that go on inside our own heads. If you’re willing to do that, then I’ll jump in with you.

    When I read things, I’m either compelled or not to comment. There is usually no middle ground. I try to be supportive, but certainly don’t force things just for the sake of a comment or support. Just because I read and don’t comment doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy or learn something, it just didn’t move me to talk about it or maybe it did move me but I just need to go away and think about it.

    Comments are something that we talk about quite a bit over here. As you’ve seen, comments are very scarce in our neighborhood. Why? Well, best we can tell, people seem uncomfortable putting their words out there. We get email and verbal comments regularly, but they won’t talk on the blog. I think there is a great discomfort with that whole concept when you don’t understand social media. And talking to the insurance industry, we’re certainly right in the thick of the people who don’t understand. We just keep talking and hope people will begin to feel comfortable as time goes on…and with a little personal encouragement.

    Thanks to you for jumping in and leading the way. Demonstration is a powerful thing and hopefully others will begin to follow your lead. We appreciate your participation and your ideas!

    Keep up the blogging. I’m going to be sending some of my newbie friends your way.

    • Talk about scary, not only putting it out there but letting people actually subscribe to it…..yikes.

      If some of the regulars I follow talk about a topic I’m not interested in or is too technical in nature I will probably leave no comment at all. Part of me wants to let them I was there, but if I do comment I want to put some thought into it instead of just ‘nice post’.

      Yes, I would imagine it’s frustrating to put great content out there and no responses.

      I don’t think I would ever tell someone I don’t like their stuff, I would keep checking it; but might eventually move on.

      My background is P&C but I focus more on relationships, profitability and what drives that. I understand Kevin had a great webinar this am that touched on some of that.

      I think your site will help give me some focus so I definitely look forward to getting involved.

      As you can see, mine is in its infancy and more social media in nature but you have given me some ideas.

      Good to see you.

  7. Hey Bill

    You bring up a couple of points to which I would like to respond.

    The first was actually at the end of your post, about how the reader should respond. If the reader has a strong reaction, good or bad, I feel they should provide feedback. Isn’t that the point of social media, to socialize with one another? When you write a blog aren’t you hoping for a dialogue rather than a monologue? As readers, we have a responsibility to participate and help others become better. Whether that’s acknowledging a job well done, offering some constructive criticism, or having an all out debate. Really, aren’t some of your favorite live discussions when you get to debate over a subject with someone you respect?! Why would the blogosphere be any different?!

    The other point is frequency vs. quality. While I don’t feel that a rigid schedule has to be met, it is important to continue to provide frequent content. I hate to see “ghost blogs” littering the social media freeway. No, we aren’t always going to have great inspiration and I would never encourage anyone to put out obviously inferior material.

    Before launching our blog, we created a “front log” of posts and continue to look for frequent enough inspiration to make sure there are always posts waiting in queue. One possible strategy to deal with quality and frequency.

    Enjoyed the post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and challenging your readers.

  8. Hey Kevin, understand I missed a great webinar this am; there was a lot of talk amongst our office.

    I agree, if you can get dialogue and people willing to offer a different point of view it can get very lively. I follow Lori Gosselin @lifeforinstance and many of the comments start going in different directions and it get lively. I like that interaction.

    I don’t have a backlog of posts but have many ‘titles’ written down I would like to flesh out stories on. If people start subscribing to me I better be consistent, huh?

    I like what you guys are doing and want to get involved. I think I have a strong enough network that if I tell them I have guest posted they will come check me out.

    I have been offered the chance to guest post but don’t think I’m quite ready in the social media group I follow because some are heavy weights (in my opinion) and I want my ‘blog’ a little more functional and purposeful.

    Thanks for your insights, what you said makes sense and it’s the interaction I would like from my writings.

    Good to see you.

  9. You just read my thoughts on this Bill: I think the ‘you MUST blog X days’ is b.s. I don’t like filler, and yet some of my silliest, most ‘filler’ type posts turn out good enough or at least get as many comments as what I think are really good on certain subjects.

    Maybe it’s that “blogging about blogging for the sake of blogging” post you’re trying to avoid, but it actually resonates with the readers b/c it’s YOU writing it, from your own perspective. Maybe you find a go-to subject that speaks to you, create that cache of 300-word essays, ready to publish when you’re in a pinch.

    Like Lori, I’ve obsessed too much over posts, learned to let go.. not everything out there is perfection, not even close (even some praised to be ‘elite’ or whatever). Go with your gut and try for both: quality over quantity, with some consistency as to when you publish; maybe publish a schedule to manage those expectations.

    As to speaking up on blogs that don’t deliver.. I may think that but I’ve held my critical “this post was a waste” tongue. Or rather, I may not comment at all or may expand on the topic with my comment, but will hold my RT if I don’t think the post merits it. A few guest posts and other posts places I was like: there’s not much meat on these bones, wondered why did this “a-list” blogger single out this for an aggregate post. IDK.. Goes back to the letting go and realizing not every post will set the Internetz on fire, certainly not my own. FWIW.

  10. Hey Davina, thanks for the comment. For the most part the blogging community seems to be a genteel group so unless its a controversial topic I don’t see anyone getting ‘called out’.

    If I’m half-way thru a read and it’s not going anywhere I might leave or just throw a different view on it to see if it goes anywhere. I do try to support my regulars though if I can.

    That’s why I’m not quite ready to drive people to my site if I don’t feel I can be consistent enough; but you’ve hit the nail on the head, sometimes just being yourself is good enough. You spend all this time on an ‘epic’ post but maybe it doesn’t sound like you. Because of this, you might throw some of your regulars off a little bit.

    It’s certainly a journey with definitely hills and valleys, but I’ve enjoyed it so far.

    Bottom line, don’t be a slave to a specific timeline. Try to have some consistency, but also look for inspiration.

    Hope you are having a great weekend.

    • I’ve seen a few of the “big name person is so wrong” posts but really it’s about the healthy debate; rare that I see that in comments, but it does happen. I am sneaky about it and will list the points w/ which I do agree before I hit ya with the ‘but this sucks’ part of my comment. Even then I keep it professional, try to explain.

      If there is one thing we can consistently do is be ourselves, which can take on many forms. I am trying to drive traffic to my site of the potential client variety, so there will be times I try for the topic-driven ‘epic’ post; others it’s just for fun or rants, but always me and always about adding something of value, even if it’s just saying something in a different way, mine. FWIW.

      • Wow, I think I’m going viral……:)

        I like the debate part of the commenting. I think Lori Gosselin’s post promotes this as opposed to just ‘dropping by’. There is many a time I will see the responses and it will provide a different point of view or take me in another direction.

        Ultimately, the more you can be yourself the more appealing it will be to me. I also like the mix of industry/job specific and general musings as well; that makes it more ‘human’.

        Every once in awhile I’ll run into someone w/ real attitude but I usually end up thinking “what side of the bed did you wake up on”.

        Thanks for pimpin’ me; if you get a minute look at the Youtube video “Taming the torrent” by Diamond Management Tech. Sobering……

  11. There’s this guy I know by the name of Bill Dorman and boy does he keep it real!

    Hi Bill!

    Here’s my philosophy…

    Pick which is most important: quantity or quality. For anyone who picks quantity, I question their reason for blogging…I question is it about making a difference and giving value, or what?

    For me; it’s not business, it’s not for monetary gain – it’s to give value. So, my priority must start with quality.

    Given my schedule, I’m hardpressed to do one article per week; so that’s about as far as I can stretch it. And even then – I don’t have a scheduled day of the week…it just falls wherever it falls!

    There have been weeks where I simply didn’t hit publish on anything because I didn’t feel that I had brought the level of quality that I want to represent – so I took my sweet time until the “idea” came to light!

    Here’s the kicker though Bill. What is trash to you and I, may actually be someone else’s treasure. It may be just what someone needs at the time.
    I tend to give a lot of myself when I comment. So it’s very time consuming…and my time is precious. When I notice someone’s quality starting to decrease, so does my participation in comments. For me it’s a natural progression.

    One tread I’ve seen over and over in my short tenure in this blogging game is that when most people increase their blogging schedule, they decrease their blogging content quality. I’ve seen others who blogged 3 times per week drop off to twice per week and their quality and readership took off.

    Okay that’s my nickel.

    I hope you have a great week Bill. I subscribed to your RSS…thought I had already done so last week – but I hadn’t.

    Have a great week!

  12. Hey JK, I think we are on the same page. Your comment about bringing ‘value’ is spot on. If you can do that then you are already way ahead of the game.

    I think the challenge for people like us (and I see Griddy struggle with it at times) is that we put so much into it at what point does it become overwhelming? I’m nowhere close to having to worry about it now, but who knows.

    I think some people put something out there just to keep their name in the mix. It might not be inspiring but it’s content, right? If you do too much of this I feel it will diminish the product and you might have trouble holding on to what you have built.

    I would rather read you once a week if I know it’s going to be worthwhile.

    Thanks for sharing and stopping by; I’m still taking baby steps but trying to find some direction with this.

    I hope you have a good week.

    • Hi Bill – thanks for the reply. Sounds like we have much in common!

      one thing that I’d suggest is that there’s no rush in finding “the direction”. It will come naturally. I would keep pluggin’ as you are!

  13. Hi Bill, this is a great post and some great comments, I’ve enjoyed both.

    My apologies for my tardiness visiting your blog. We are both active in several of the same communities… I’m just a bit slower than the others. I’m all subscribed up to your blog now 🙂

    From what I’ve experienced from you to date, you’re well on your way to being a most excellent blogger. You really connect with people and that isn’t as easy as it sounds. There are millions of people on social networks just cranking along to cluelessness. The value is seeing the bigger picture, experincing the potential and feeding the monster.

    And it sounds like your serious about delivering awesomeness. Count me in Bill, and I hope to get to know you much better in the comming weeks, months and years 🙂

    • Hey Mark, thanks for stopping by and the nice comments.

      Yeah, I see you out there in some of the same neighborhoods. You can blame Gini Dietrich, she opened the door for me and I just crashed in. She did help me with getting engaged and then everything started falling into place.

      I’m going to clean things up a little bit and get a little more direction, but welcome you to drop by anytime.

      Good to see you and look forward to getting to know you better.

  14. Bill, you do make me laugh-sweet lord I think we are all going to drop a turd on the dinner table occasionally, lol. The trick is not to do it to often. I try to put my best out there, as I’m sure most bloggers do, but I think the problem can be were get to attached to a piece of writing and struggle to edit it well. So we can turn our turd into a shiny piece of gold, that doesn’t stink, but is priceless.

    I love,love, love the new look your sporting here. All hail Bill the SM rockstar in the making

  15. And I think I’m going to get a wedge cut in my hair and die it purple….a true rock star.

    I will get over to your site and take a look.

    It’s funny as you try to gain position and visibility what that looks like. This article is very similar to one I saw posted a few day ago and RT’d by an ‘A’ lister. It was a good article and getting plenty of comments, but essentially the same thing I was saying. Of course with me being under the radar, I’m surprised I have as many comments as I do.

    So it begs the question, is it really content or is it who you know?

    Some of your content just blows me away; it is really good. I think you are headed in the right direction however. I’m just wondering if you would be more effective doing one post a wk and then jumping in to other sites and making comments and dragging your post with you?

    This can be a fickle world at times, can’t it?

    Good to see you and thanks for the comments.

    • Bill you know, you got me. I read sooooooo much, and as you can tell, I write. But some often I read a stream of comments under a great post, especially if its about social media, and I think ” jeez, what can I add to that”. I read, I learn and I kind of sit in the shadows.

      Someone asked me what my strategy was for getting twitter followers that other day, and I was stumped,

      “strategy”.you telling me I need a strategy? Your right Bill, instead of just reading, I should add my 2 British pence, maybe I’m just scared of looking like the newbie fool, who doesn’t get the acronyms of whatever else. Despite the way it looks, I’m can be incredibly shy.

      Thanks for the tip bill, you put into written words, that which I vocalised only today.

      Also I find the social media blogs seam to foster the best over all sense of community. I can’t tell you the amount of PD blogs I have commented on in the past, and the blog authors has not responded, or even moderated. I think there is a different communal vibe about the SM/blogging community

      Any way that was a griddy length comment ( see I do read the big boys, just fraid to speak up, lol)


      • I even have some followers who haven’t commented to my replies; huh, what’s up with that?

        I don’t really have a strategy because I’m not monetizing, but I think by actively engaging and not just doing a ‘drive-by’ I have picked up some quality people. I can live with that.

        Thanks for dropping by again…….

  16. Bill, nice to see such participation here. I think when you hit the 5K or 10K comment mark, you SHOULD die your hair purple and take a picture for us.

    JK makes a great point about how different people perceive quality; that’s what makes it interesting and I think it builds over time. I’ve stopped reading some blogs not b/c of a one bad post, but b/c over time I didn’t feel the quality was there or was not scalable to my business; or maybe the engagement was lacking in the discussion. Mark is right about the big picture, and going in with a plan of engaging around quality content is certainly an excellent starting point. FWIW.

    • Purple w/ the wedge cut and a tat……..

      It is kind of neat to see the responses; whereas if someone were to see my post just floating out there it probably won’t get read, but if I attach it to a comment on a site seems to drive some traffic.

      There are a few nuances I am picking up on and just about the time I think I have it down pat and ready to go, somebody slips a curve ball in there.

      I’m not unhappy w/ my effort and it has been a learning experience, but it’s great people like you that make it all worthwhile.

      I appreciate your support and thanks for taking the time to stop by again.

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