New bloggers will not have many readers. So when there aren’t any, how to get the motivation one needs to go on and keep blogging.
The toughest part of writing is when you realize no one is reading. It hurts and doesn’t find the motivation to blog. Then slowly, things start falling apart as you recognize no one is reading what you have written with so much passion.
The point where you trip upon the idea – Should I still keep writing?
And then the self-doubt engulfs our thinking process.
No one will read what you have written unless they know what you write is worth reading.
And if you expect someone will consider your work as worth reading from the very first day, you aren’t assessing it well.
You will make mistakes and learn out of it.
If I go through some of my articles written in 2009, I feel, they need either a makeover or needs to be deleted. I have removed many of my old articles or redirected them to new versions.
If I asses the situation now, I should thank Google for not sending much traffic to those articles because if it would have got the traffic then, I may not have improved as a writer and blogger.
I have seen people start blogging, but within 3 to 6 days, they stop because no one is reading what they have written with passion. On top of that, they find below the belt blogging tricks get readerships and lose track of blogging.
So, the point is, should how to keep on writing and blogging when no one is reading?
Blogging Motivation: The Japanese Fresh Fish Story
Here is one story I found here
The Japanese have always loved fresh fish. But the waters close to Japan have not held much fish for decades. So the fishermen had to go further out to sea to catch their supply of fish, the fishing boats got bigger and bigger.
The farther the fishermen went, the longer it took to bring in the fish. If the return trip took more than a few days, the fish was not fresh and they lost their fresh taste.
To solve this problem, fishing companies installed freezers on their boats. They would catch the fish and freeze them at sea. Freezers allowed the boats to go farther and stay longer. However, the Japanese could taste the difference between fresh and frozen and they did not like frozen fish. Also, the frozen fish brought a lower price. So fishing companies installed fish tanks. They would catch the fish and stuff them in the tanks, fin to fin. After a little thrashing around, the fish stopped moving. They were tired and dull, but alive. Unfortunately, the Japanese could still taste the difference; because the fish did not move for days, they lost their fresh-fish taste.
The Japanese preferred the lively taste of fresh fish, not sluggish fish.
So how did Japanese fishing companies solve this problem? How do they get fresh-tasting fish to Japan? To keep the fish tasting fresh, the Japanese fishing companies added a small shark to the tanks that the fish were kept in. The shark, of course, eats a few fish, but most of the fish arrive in a very lively state due to the fact that the fish are challenged.
The moral of the story is, you need to have the shark in the tank to keep going. As a blogger, you need that shark behind you to keep writing.
The one-line answer is “Motivation to be a Blogger.”
To avoid stuff that can derail you to remain motivated as a blogger.
1. Don’t Look at Traffic Stats if they Demotivate You
You don’t need to be looking at how many people have visited your site. I prefer not to have any stats tracking software on my new blogs either because it doesn’t do any good, but it can have a very lasting demotivating effect.
Both my blogs (BizTips.co and shabbir.in) had no traffic to start with. However, there wasn’t much traffic even after the first year.
The point is blogging is never about high traffic numbers. It is about passion. For me, it is marketing, freelancing, programming & finance. Hence, I gave a shot of blogging around it. And things worked.
Writing has influenced my thought process. It has changed my perception to look at things differently.
Writing for something you love and making it available for others to read has an added advantage of personal growth.
But then the question is, what’s the point of writing if there’s nobody to read?
The reason to blog is to enjoy the process of blogging and not fascinated by the number of readers and followers.
2. Remember the “Why” Of Blogging
You remember this Ted Talk by Simon Sinek.
Your why will be the inspiration and the motivation for you to keep blogging even when no one wants to be reading just yet what you share online.
Let me share an incident.
I came across a guy who is in his mid-40s. He got in touch with me through a mutual connection—a nutritionist, exercise enthusiast, a marathoner, life coach, etc.
He manages to lose a considerable amount of weight using his diet plans. So, he had an idea of sharing his weight loss experience with others for motivation (Read as make quick money online).
He wanted me to be part of it. And I often get such offers.
The easiest way to get such people off me is – give them a website and ask them to get in touch once they have completed ten articles.
He agreed and assured me of doing it quickly and in the next few days.
To date, I haven’t heard back from him.
My point here is not to blog because it is something you hear from a friend blogging can make millions.
Your WHY will decide how far you go with your blog.
3. Set Right Goals for the Task; not of Results
Goals are essential because they give us direction. They keep reminding us what to do and where one needs to reach.
One should set the right goals.
As an example, if you happen to start a blog, your goal should not be to reach certain traffic levels. Traffic is the result of your efforts to write and market.
The goal should be what you can do.
So goals should be like:
- I will write one article daily/weekly.
- I will write one guest post daily/weekly.
- Write more articles related to keywords to gain authority.
- I will share one quote on my Instagram/Twitter.
- 1,000 visitors per day.
- $X amount of money from Adsense.
- Get 1000 blog subscribers.
- Ranking in Google for the term
Because if you set the targets for results, the focus to build a better blog for readers can vanish in thin air and will change to better those numbers. Again, once the number is the target, you can become a stat addict.
Remember, ranking factors, traffic, subscribers, or Adsense earning must not be the ultimate goal while writing.
The kind of target I have for BizTips is:
- I have plans to write 1000 words daily for all my blogs, articles, and ebooks combined.
- Publish three articles on BizTips and one on my Investment blog weekly
- Always reply to readers’ questions as soon as humanly possible.
I have no target set for income or traffic levels. They are the result of my efforts.
4. Be Self Motivate; Don’t Seek Motivation Outside
If you hope that few magic words from a friend, family member, or even a client will keep you motivated to write, it won’t work. It will help for the time being but not to keep on writing.
There is only one thing that works; there is only one person who can keep you going – Your inner self, You, Yourself.
If the fire, the hunger to write every day doesn’t motivate you, then blogging is not your cup of tea. If one believes that writing is the only purpose of his/her life, no amount of distraction can compromise them.
Asking others to encourage you to keep writing is silly. I might sound harsh, but that’s true.
Let’s say you are reading motivational blogs & quotes, watching videos for inspiration. How long do you think it’s going to work? Even if someone is doing that to you, how long he/she will continue?
The problem starts when these things are no longer available to inspire you. Unknowingly you dwelled upon them.
The whole scenario will look like, “You need someone to motivate you to keep writing for someone else or yourself.”
5. Watch the Progress of Whatever Can Motivate You
I know it can be contradictory to the first point where you should not focus on the stats, but what I mean to watch the progress is not for the growth in stats but anything that is moving the needle.
If only that is growing for your blog is post count, keep a close watch on it. It can help you get motivation.
Let’s understand this from a different perspective.
When you see the progress, it will always motivate you. Will you keep playing a game where you are stuck at a point and keep trying, or will you play the game where you are making progress?
Progress is addictive and motivates an individual to keep doing things for a long time. Apply the same for writing and blogging.
6. Reward Yourself for Accomplishing Small tasks
Reward yourself for sticking to a diet with a cheat day. Take a day off after completing a research-based long article or finishing up a complex code.
Often, as far as I know, writers and developers don’t work that way.
Successful bloggers acknowledge accomplishing a task even if it’s a small one by rewarding themselves.
Hence, I devised a reward mechanism for myself. For example, eating outdoors, spending quality with my family, playing games, or taking a week off work completely, going for long vacations.
It motivates me to carry on doing what I love to do.
The key is to recognize and celebrate the progress even if it’s a small one. Reward yourself with more minor successes to keep up the enthusiasm to get bigger things done over time.
7. Blog for Fun and Authority, Not for Money
We read about highly successful bloggers like Pat Flynn, Marie Forleo, Tim Ferris. These bloggers make a full time living out of their blogs.
But did they start making money on the first day from their blogs? The answer is No.
All the bloggers started with a passion, not an income goal. They worked hard towards creating stuff that eventually made a difference in the reader’s life or changed their life altogether.
Hence, if an individual’s mind is to only make money out of the blog, then he/she has selected the wrong path.
The money will eventually follow if you have readers are hungry to read what you have to offer, but it can never be the case from day one.
8. Read Success Stories of other Bloggers
The idea is not to get the motivation from outside but being self-motivated. But time and again, one needs to rejuvenate it as well.
It is when blogging success stories can help.
Successful bloggers share their blog journey in a detailed step by step. Read them to get motivation, which is a vital ingredient to keep blogging for a long time.
The idea is to take inspiration from successful bloggers and not about their income. The problem arises when new bloggers focus on “money” instead of how to blog effectively.
Hence, reading stories of successful bloggers and get inspired by their dedication to being a blogger
9. Surround Yourself with Positive People
I completely agree with the fact that we are an average of people around us.
Kids take up inspiration from parents because they are around them. Friends become an inspiration. I even realized some habits I have developed are because of the people around me.
Having a strong network of positive people is a gateway to success.
Any successful blogger who has achieved success will always attribute some aspect of their success to others.
Now, these “other” can be a peer support group, life partners, family members, or even a mentor. They have positive people around encourage us to do things that lead to success.
10. It is ok to take a break
I took the break from blogging for BizTips in Mar 2019.
The main reason to take the break was, I had so many commitments like accounting, my kids getting into SSC and so they needed some time, I went for a vacation pre to kids starting 10th Std, My Dad had a heart attack in Feb, so, I had to move him from my home town Dhoraji to Surat, etc.
Everything in that list needed my attention more than BizTips for sure, but as soon as I could, I am back to blogging ways again.
It can again happen such that in May, we have Ramzan and I may lighten up my publishing schedule or take a break as well.
There is no harm in taking a break, but getting back to blogging ways is also important. Remember, the break should not be a break forever from blogging.
If you enjoy the process of blogging and being a blogger, there is nothing that can stop you.