I don’t remember the exact number, but I have been following Seth Godin’s blog for a few years now. He has a blog that breaks a few rules of blogging – the blog is hosted on typepad and does not have comments enabled – yet his blog’s twitter account has more than 500 thousand followers. I am sure most of us would be happy with one third of that number.
I have often wondered what it is that makes his blog work, and I have come up with a few things that he does that make people fall in love with his blog. I think these can be used by bloggers, and writers alike to improve their craft.
A blog about ideas
Almost all of Seth Godin’s posts are about ideas. He usually talks about how small changes in your lives, and in your thinking, can make a great impact on how your life turns out to be in the end. Without being preachy or patronising, he talks about ideas that can improve an individual’s personal and work life. Isn’t that something most of us are looking for?
As a blogger and a writers, you should try to focus on content more than anything else. People will read what you write, only if you have something meaningful and relevant to say. Seth Godin seems to have understood that. You need to too.
Brevity, the soul of wit
Seth Godin’s posts are short.
In today’s time, when you are bombarded with hundreds of links with catchy titles every day, I think it is especially important to convey your message in as few words as possible. Brevity, anyway, has been a writer’s best friend for ages. On occasion, Seth Godin may write a long post, but usually his posts are really short. You can go through most of his posts in under a minute.
If you don’t believe me, take a look at one of his shorter posts:
“Don’t touch it, you might break it.” (Title)
This is, of course, the opposite of,
“Touch it, you can make it better.”
What’s the default where you work?
The Reader as an intelligent being
Another great thing about Seth Godin’s posts is that they don’t try to explain everything. The posts mostly end with a question, or a statement, that have the ability to initiate a chain of thought in the reader’s mind. You, as a reader, enjoy that. It also helps you internalize the ideas being advocated in the blog.
Addressing a global audience
A truly successful blog is one that has a worldwide appeal. One may be based in Canada, USA, or India, but there are some fundamental rules about human lives that remain unchanged. If you can write about these ideas, you are bound to attract the attention of a global audience. In today’s age, when giant leaps in technology are bringing the world right to your doorsteps, the number of concepts that have a worldwide appeal are increasing. Seth Godin seems to have got a good handle on what these ideas are. If you want to attract a global audience, you need to too.
If you want to we a good writer, or a good blogger, the one thing that have to do is to write a lot. If you want to be a writer, you have to write everyday, and if you want to be a blogger, you have to blog regularly. Daily, if you can, but, at least, regularly if you can’t. Seth Godin updates his blog on an almost daily basis. So, every time you open his blog, he has a new post waiting for you. Who wouldn’t like that?
Do you follow his blog? What do you think works for him?
(Seth Godin’s image used in the post has been taken from the Internet)