Blogger Therapy: Overcoming The Plateau

Dear Coutorture,

I’ve always prided myself in being an early blog adapter.  I started back in 2005, which seems like ages ago when you step back and realize how far blogging has come.  Web 2.0 was a term only the upper echelon of weblogging tossed around.  And I was a naive online boutique owner trying to bring in some buyers through this new miracle buyer magnet — blogs.

But now it’s 2008, and what was once an easy publishing tool to market my store has taken on a life of its own, and in turn, taken over my life.  I now worry about traffic, page ranks, Technorati ranking, and to make matters worse, everyone else is blogging too.  In MY niche.  And, statistically, better.  They have high rankings, and traffic, and they are acknowledged by Guy Kawasaki.  I feel ignored.  I was here first.  I had such a glorious start.  How do I regain it?  Is it even possible?  Have I reached a plateau?  If content is king, why is my once magazine attention-getting content burried in the six-figures land of Technorati?

–Anonymous and Frustrated Blogger

Anonymous,

Ah, the inevitable plateau.  Remember those enthusiastic days when your blog was fresh and you followed all the great tips and tricks?  It’s time to revisit those days.  The best way to pull yourself out of a rut is to get back to basics.

1:  Stop obsessing over analytics

Let’s face it – we all obsesses over the latest traffic numbers.  What post has the most traffic? The most page views? It doesn’t matter!  Blogs aren’t about traffic and trackbacks, they’re about content.  Focus on your content and your readers will notice. Once your readers take note, all the things that you got sidetracked by will right themselves.  Be sure you’re properly tagging your posts for optimum SEO, and you’ll get back on track in no time.

2: Reach out to the blogging community

In the beginning, there were link exchanges and relationship building across the blogging community.  Just because your blog has been around for a substantial period of time isn’t an excuse to isolate yourself.  Think how many blogs have withered away since your blog began.  Double that number, and those are the blogs who have come to take their place.  It’s time to make new blogger friends! Once a week, spend a bit of time hopping from one blogroll to the next to discover new blogs.  You never know, you might discover your new blogging bff.

3: Get a blogging buddy

Make friends with a blogger you don’t feel competitive with, and use each other’s success to motivate one another. You’ll find when you’re unmotivated to post, your buddie’s posting energy will rub off.  It may sound silly, but it works.

4: If all else fails, reinvent yourself

Blogs that have been around since before blogging was cool had a great formula.  Since that time blogging has evolved.  The majority of blog readers now have blogs of their own.  How do you recapture their attention?  Start a new column.  Infuse more personal aspects into your posts. Start producing your own videos. Sponsor a contest or giveaway. If you are enthusiastic about your blog, your readers will be too.

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2 responses to “Blogger Therapy: Overcoming The Plateau

  1. Just when I was feeling that I had reached a plateau along you came with just the ideas I needed to fire me up and help revitalize my blog. Especially interesting were your insights as to the needs of the visually impaired. There is no community the equal of Coutoture . Thank you. Keep up the great work .
    Cheers, Barb

  2. Dear Cootoo Toore,

    I about popped a curler when I saw your “Blog Therapy.” Fortunatley for my hyper-competitive nature, I see you are a serious and qualified advisor about Blogstress. Where in my case, I got into the Blogger Advice Racket for the pure pleasure of flappin my trap. Even though my actual advice ain’t worth the time it takes to decipher, I do enjoy imagining the reader scratching there head. Least they quit fretting for a minute. So…

    1. Analytics – Never take them. Makes me wheeze.
    2. Reach out – I belive it. The Four Tops sang it.
    3. Bloggin Buddy – Why not. You know any still bloggin 90 year olds?
    4. Re-Invent – Have you seen my picture? I ain’t gonna compete with Madonna!

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