In Like a Lamb, Out Like a Sheep

\"InI have been blogging for one year. And what a year it’s been!

Good News
I’m a Blogging Machine! I have 22 posts (let’s be generous and count this one too, so 23). That, my friends, means an average of almost one post every fortnight. Boom!
Bad News
Apparently the Blogging Gods say you need to post at least once a week, and preferably 2-4x, to be successful. Hmmmm

Good News
My page views and email subscriptions have increased something like a billionfold.
Bad News
They both started at zero, so multiplying is probably not the right function to use. My email list is just some family and close buddies, and a good chunk of my (very modest) pageviews seem to come from foreign robots. Not that I have anything against foreigners. Or robots.

Good News
I’ve really enjoyed writing, and if differentiating from other writers was the goal (hint: it was) my eclectic mix has squarely hit the mark.
Bad News
I’m rather slow at writing. I’m also a little short on “core” finance articles, where I certainly have expertise but am easily distracted.

Overall, I’d say things are looking peachy, but I do need to address the most glaring problems.

More Content

One of the problems I’ve encountered is that I spend a lot more time trying to write each post than is probably warranted (hard to tell, I know), and certainly more than industry standard. But here is where my secret strategy comes to light.

You see, some bloggers say that 2% of their articles drive almost all of their traffic. I think the only reasonable way to interpret that is now, since I have my hand-crafted, Faberge-egg-quality articles for my 2% on such outstanding finance topics as ex-crack-addict entrepreneurs , overflowing toilets , and the AK-47, I just need to write several hundred low-quality filler articles to round out the 98%, and then this ship’s headed to the moon.

Followers, Twitterers, Commenters

My main problem to date in expanding my readership is that my family isn’t larger. Plus I don’t know how to use Twitter. Plus I’ve kept this blog under a bushel, figuratively speaking, from most of my friends and acquaintances. Plus most of the organic search traffic has been interested in Stampylonghead himself, not my exhortation of entrepreneurship with him as the example. Other than the family size issue, though, I think I can fix these pretty easily.

Setting objectives to solve these problems gives me the following for the next year. I know they’re all major stretch goals, but I’m just the kind of go-getter who may be able to pull them off:

  • At least 23 posts, meaning I will have doubled – or more – my galactic contribution to finance
  • Cover some more basic finance stuff. At least one post needs to be about finance, narrowly defined. Maybe two.
  • Get a good bragging montage to put some pop on my “About” page
  • Grow my email list by 100% (EXCLUDING family members)
  • Get like, 100 comments or something
  • Embrace Twitter. I’m not going to be more specific than that, because I don’t yet know how.
  • Give and get a guest post / interview from another finance blogger*

* This seems like an unreachable goal for industry validation, until you realize that I’m a finance blogger myself. It’s a low bar.

I do have some tricks up my sleeve. The first is a concession to my vanity. I’m going to introduce the one-hour post, where I just write for an hour and hit publish. (This post was looking promising, but I started trying to find a good picture of a lamb and that of course takes time.) Self-handicapping in this way will give me a ready excuse for any critical audience (dude, like, I wasn’t even trying). It’ll also be a great way of filling in my 98% of low-quality dribble. (In all seriousness, this may be helpful for me to improve as a writer since it’ll allow me to compare quality over time in a controlled test).

I also need to do a much better job of just re-hashing stuff that is already out there. Why handcraft posts from scratch when you can lob in wit and wisdom from the sidelines? I’ve been a bit hesitant to date – a writer with few posts, few followers, and no authority offering his take on major topics and events? But then I realized that is actually the textbook definition of blogging. When in Rome…


For those of you who have been along for the ride so far, thanks very much for reading. All kidding aside, my real goal is just to try to entertain you and have a little fun with personal finance, broadly defined. That will continue this next year!


Picture courtesy of Rudy And Peter Skitterians

2 thoughts on “In Like a Lamb, Out Like a Sheep”

  1. Nice. Only 99 more comments to go 🙂

    And let me know your heart’s desire for new posts – taking orders for any financial topics you’d like me to tackle.

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