I blog because I like writing. I write to practice communicating clearly. In 2013 one single post “An Apology to my European IT Team” accounted for 99% of my traffic, which led me to add a new goal to the list. How do I develop a sustainable set of readers?
Never forget, you are writing for strangers.Vonnegut
I had a goal of increasing organic traffic to the site and explored several ways to do so. By focusing on books I enjoyed and taking a different approach to book reviews, I was on track to hit that goal last year in 2020. The pandemic gave strong tailwinds, as my personal background in porous materials – including facemasks and indoor air quality (“IAQ”), became popular topics leading to many new readers.
Until the lion learns how to write, every story will glorify the hunter.African Proverb
2021 looks to extend the trend, mostly based on the approach to book reviews and news topics. For book reviews:
- Focus on the writing style
- Take a very thorough, page-by-page approach
- Roll up the page-by-page approach to chapter-by-chapter to full book summaries
- Drive the reader to read the original book – this leads me to focus on books I would recommend
- The target audience is new readers of great books
- Focus on educational and self-help style books with long reading cycles (Mandelbrot, Goldratt, Moore, Sun Tzu)
- Look for derivative activities to drill deep into books – such as YouTube with Dale Carnegie, YouTube Goldratt, Goldratt on #YouTubeShorts with chapter-by-chapter summaries has been well received and was fun to do. By summarizing the subject, it makes the communication crisp.
- Look for topics that will be around a while – even if it is just a post on BBQ or Sous Vide…
- Not everything gets posted – at any time, my ‘Drafts’ section could have 30 or more topics
- Get to topics that lend themself to repeat, daily topics – find a way to make my own rhythm
- Try to be useful to the public – such as with Seabase and Scouts BSA, Peloton, or with Tactical Pants – after all, I’m being selfish in writing to improve my own communication.
For news or topical writing: