Well look at that! This blog is actually bringing in traffic!
At this point I’ve got what… ten posts? Maybe eleven?
If I would’ve listened to the doomgloom lately on r/blogging and r/juststart, I wouldn’t have even tried. They’re over there posting all this stuff about how the Google Helpful Content Core Update ruined their lives and their businesses. Everything’s on fire, their site traffic has plummeted, and now they’re making a fraction of what they used to.
Well, I’d certainly feel that way too if I spent years writing about topics I didn’t really care about just to capture views so I could show them ads. Imagine devoting every day of your life writing about something super niche like tires. Your income depends on how in-depth you get about these tires. If you ever decide to write about things other than tires, your audience begins to lose the association between you and tires and your business weakens. And then the majority of them go to your competitor, because with writing online, most of the time you’re building a castle with no moat. Competitors can come right in and do what you’re doing, only with an army of Fiverr guys churning out content at a velocity you could never match.
Writing about a niche topic to make a quick buck—that’s a losing game.
I suspect that it’s better to just write what you want. Your passion will come through, and even though it’s drilled into us that no one cares about our personal lives, I’ve found that to be false. People crave humanness and authenticity in this increasingly chatgpt-driven internet, ruled by algorithms that incentivize us to blend in and post the same nonsense that some influencer is promoting. We’re trained to stay on these dopamine treadmills, hypnotizing ourselves with all this “content,” brainwashed into believing things about ourselves and buying things to fill the void created by those beliefs.
A satisfied customer is no longer profitable. So our digital social landscape has shifted into a rage machine that is incentivized in every way to keep us dissatisfied. But wait! It has the cure for that. It’ll just be $39.99 per month.
I don’t want anything to do with that type of business model, and it feels wrong to me in every single way. Maybe that means I will fail (again), but I’m an artist, so I’m playing a slightly different game. My business’ success is 100% about my ability to create emotional resonance between my work and the observers of my work. All other endpoints of my business—page views, art sales, book sales, newsletter signups—even the amount of money I make—all come secondary to striking that resonance just right.