This guest post is by Jared Latigo.
I’ve come across possibly hundreds of articles from prominent sites around the web that tackle the 10, 15, or 101 reasons your blog isn’t getting the traffic it deserves. But the interesting thing is that none of the ones I’ve found mention the real reason, the core reason, as to why no one is reading your blog.
This isn’t a stretch, in fact, we all know it. It’s not even something that we’re oblivious to. In fact, it’s obvious but we tend to forget it often.
The simple reason is entitlement. Let me explain.
Your mom is the only one reading your posts
That’s great. I’m glad she thinks you’re awesome. I mean, my mom reads mine and she thinks I’m awesome. At least, I think so. But that’s a problem.
It would be perfectly okay with me if it were her plus, say, 400 other people every day. But that’s not the case. So how do we fix it?
It’s a mindset thing.
The real problem is this
You are writing awesome, compelling, new-to-the-world content that will change the course of history, yet no one is reading it. Except your mom. And the reason is that we forget that we’re not entitled to anyone’s attention. Not any more.
We forget that everyone else thinks they are just as awesome as we think we are. It’s really a problem. We forget to ask permission to talk to them and then wonder why we’re losing followers on Twitter when we post 30 times a day about our recent blog post!
Seth Godin, who I’m a huge fan of, talks about permission marketing. He says that in order to market these days, we have to get people to want us to market to them. And we have to keep that promise forever.
“Permission marketing is the privilege (not the right) of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to people who actually want to get them.”—Seth Godin
The interesting thing is that Dale Carnegie wrote about this in 1936. This is nothing new. The book is called How to Win Friends and Influence People. It’s amazing. But in it, he talks not about marketing a company, but about getting along with people. He references incredible people like Abraham Lincoln, who was known as “Honest Abe” for a reason: he was honest!
But the key takeaway from that book, for me anyway, was this.
“There is only on way under the high Heaven to get anybody to do anything. Did you every stop to think of that? Yes, just one way. And that is by making the other person want to do it. Remember, there is no other way.”—Dale Carnegie
The two takeaways from that quote are:
- The other person has to want to do it.
And we forget.
I have no idea why, but we forget that no one owes us their time, or their money, or their attention. We have to make them want to give us each of those. That’s the only way anyone is going to buy your product or read your blog. You have to make them want to read it.
Seth Godin and Dale Carnegie are a good two generations apart, but they understand the same core tenet of getting people to do something. The same is true for our blogs.
(Luckily) The solution is simple
Well, it’s not really simple in action, but it’s simple in terms of what to do. We need to remember a few things everyday, regardless of the day.
- Not one single person on this planet owes us their attention, not even your mom.
- We must make the other person want to read us or share us with their friends.
- We must never take readership, friendships, or relationships for granted.
- We must fulfill our promises, forever.
- We must never feel entitled to anyone’s time or resources. They are finite.
But how do we implement this?
It takes work. It takes lots and lots of work. I’m not going to define a step-by-step list here because I believe every person and every situation is different. I think it will take some trial and error and some serious creative thought.
But I will leave you with this.
The road to gaining more blog readership is long. I’ve just begun, and it’s slow and hard. But I believe that getting rid of entitlement thinking is the core way, the number one, real way, to get more traffic to your blog.
Sure, there are other things that go along with that, many are on those lists I’ve read plenty of. But, when we get rid of that mindset that people owe us their attention, we open up a door to endless possibilites. And behind it we will be more willing to share content, give free stuff away, ask for permission, and get creative in building a tribe around our platforms.
Will you commit to this mindset? Sign up in the comment area by saying a simple “I’m In!” Feel free to tell us any ideas you have to help others. Post articles you may have stashed away that are great insight into building a blog. And all with the core remembrance of “I’m not entitled to anyone’s attention!”
Jared Latigo is a designer, writer, speaker, and passion guy. As a bonus, an exclusive ebook “The Big Blog Push: How to Turn Your Struggling Blog Into an Empire” has been written for you. Grab yours at JaredLatigo.com/problogger! You can also follow him on Twitter and read his posts on his blog.