Trafficado

So I wrote a guest post! What’s that you say? You barely post on your own blog, but you’ll post on other sites? Yes. But they asked!

The post is on the Trafficado blog. Trafficado is an awesome local (Utah) agency full of some really fun, but also extremely talented marketers. Highly recommend them actually, and that was before they asked me to write. :)

So for the post, I actually collaborated with a friend and coworker, Roger Gibson. Two minds are better than one right? The post is entitled What your enterprise client expects from you. Check it out! Let me know what you think on twitter, or comment on the post on Trafficado’s site.

I got the email from Bluehost that I’ve been dreading. The email that says that I’m going to have to pony up for another year of hosting if I want RickGalan.com to stay up. In a way it’s really a good thing though. It has springboarded an effort to get some value out of that money I’m spending. That effort has started with a quick retheming and redesign of the blog.
I have opted to go with a free theme called The Bootstrap. It’s a really clean and simple theme, which I think is necessary to remove barriers to writing. Low maintenance.
The other thing that is great about the theme, and one of the key reasons that I chose it was because it has what’s called a responsive layout. Responsive design  is a relatively recent design technique driven by the fact that there are a myriad devices and screen sizes people use to access the web. Content should be dynamic and respond to fit the different sizes and formats without having to load a completely different version of the site.
Want to see it in action? Visit the blog on your smartphone, tablet, or simply resize the window in Chrome or Firefox (pretty sure IE doesn’t do it). I still have a little work to do with the logo, but I think it’s slick. :)
Besides compatibility with mobile devices, another reason that I went to a responsive theme for the blog is because Google has flat out said that this is how they prefer websites to be designed in order to be crawled most efficiently for all devices. Pierre Far, a Webmaster Central Analyst for Google, mentioned this at SMX Advanced in June, and posted it on the Google Webmaster Central blog as well. I’ve found that when Google “strongly recommends” something, it’s worth looking into.
So there you have it. Renewed effort in blogging. At least this year’s hosting will have this post to show for it. :)

 

So I have to apologize – I left today’s post in my other pants..err.. blog. :) Yesterday I wrote a post called Which Metric is Best and posted it to the NewMixMarketing Blog (NMMBlog). NewMixMarketing is a new site that my good friend and social media consultant, blogger & author Josh Peters has started, in collaboration with some experts in various fields. It’s a group effort, where each of us posts on a specific topic once a week (my topic being PPC or Paid Search). We’ve got the written stylings of Josh Peters, Scott Duehlmeier, Nick Johnson, Darin “Doc” Berntson, Jessica Petersen & myself, covering Social Media, PR, Branding, SEO, PPC, Design, etc. There are already some great posts up, so I’m really excited about where this is going.

My post yesterday dealt with choosing the right metrics to track your paid search campaigns. It’s my first post on the blog, but you can expect more every week on Thursday. Take a look! :)

So I’ve come to a decision. I am going to be migrating this blog to a new domain: RickGalan.com. I have found that I simply cannot stay fully on a topic (like conversational marketing), and let slide a lot of good posts because they don’t fully align with the theme of the blog. Since I basically suck at writing here anyway, I feel like I should remove any barriers I can.

I have a few other URLs that I want to use (in conjunction with other writers) to have more focused content. So that should be a good time.

I would love some feedback… Good idea? Bad idea? Why? Should I simply start a new blog and leave this one alone, or should I migrate everything over and redirect everything (which is what I’m leaning towards)?

If you have any thoughts I would love to hear them – either in the comments or hit me up on Twitter: @RickGalan

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to attend a local mini-conference (or summit, or meetup, or something)  where 3 online business rockstars spoke. In Utah this is a pretty big deal. I was able to hear from Mitch Joel, Julien Smith and Chris Brogan. It was really, really good – the Women Tech Council did a great job putting on the event. You should buy their books and read their blogs and all that stuff. There is a reason they are rockstars.

But that’s not really my point in bringing it up. My point is that I am constantly amazed by the continual quality of work and content that these guys produce online. I mean it really baffles me. They were actually asked how they do it during the summit, and their answers boiled down to two things:

  • They make it a priority
  • They make sacrifices

These are not uncommon answers for the “how do you find time to blog” question. In fact, they are both things I have heard before. I have been giving it a lot of thought lately though, because my own writing and content creation has been seriously neglected over the last… forever, and it’s about time it stopped. Or started. You know what I mean.

As I said, I have been giving it a lot of thought. So as of about 6 minutes ago, I am instituting a “blog for at least 15 minutes a day” policy in my life. Why? How? Let me break it down for you…

“I don’t have the time” and other such nonsense

A common hurdle to get over when to writing is the “I just don’t have the time to devote to writing” problem. Well I’m solving that one first. I’ll tell you right now, I don’t have the time. I have a full-time job I spend an unholy amount of hours working at, I have a family (including a new born), a house, and a number of side projects that take up all my waking hours, and some of my sleeping ones. But I also know that creating content is important, and it’s a skill I want to improve.

So instead of doing the whole “1000 words”, “a post a day” or “3 posts a week” or whatever, I am blogging for 15 minutes a day. Now whether I can get something posted in that time frame is not what’s important. What is important is that 15 minutes is something I can plan for, schedule in, and accomplish without being pulled away to something else. You can’t really say “I don’t have the time to do X for 15 minutes every day” because then you are saying that you don’t have 15 minutes free. Which is a lie.

Why it’s not “Write for 15 minutes a day”

If you have ever blogged, you will know that it’s a lot more than writing. There is coming up with ideas, outlining and organizing them, writing, editing, revising, looking for fancy images, creating links, posting, tagging, promoting, etc. If I limited this 15 minutes to just writing, I would still never get anything posted. I would have volumes of unpostable drivel.

Now there will of course be some days that I will want to spend more time than just 15 minutes. For example, I hit the 15 minute mark about 42 seconds ago, but I’m still going. But according to my self-inflicted rules, I don’t have to. I could stop right here (.) and pick it up tomorrow, and post it then. But I happen to find myself with a little extra time tonight, so I will keep at it a bit longer.

I’m hoping that this system I have devised is going to do the trick. What’s the trick you ask? What’s the outcome I am hoping for?

The Endgame

The point of all this is to build the habit. Classical conditioning at work here. Very Pavlovian. I want to create content easier, blog more often, develop my thoughts better, share them with my peers and followers, have conversations and build relationships. All in 15 minutes a day!

I’m joking around a lot, but I am really serious. I am putting in the time. I’m getting out the laptop (not the phone or iPad or netbook or whatever – the workhorse), turning off the distractions that off buttons (Phone, Twitter, Facebook, IM, iPod, Pandora, Hulu, TV, etc.), hiding from the ones that don’t (the wife, the babies, the mom looking for tech support) and putting in 15 solid minutes of straight blogging every day.

So what do you think? I have a few questions I would love for you to answer in the comments:

  • How do you find the time to blog? What have you found that works for you?
  • Do you think my plan will work? Why or why not?
  • Do you want to join me?

If you do want to join me in the 15-a-day plan, let me know. We’ll start an awesome club or something.

ChrisG.comOne of my favorite blogs (just added to the blogroll, as a matter of fact) had a great post today entitled 41 Blog Success Tips from 10 Years of Blogging You Can Learn Today. The author is Chris Garrett, who is a professional blogger and consultant in the UK. If you haven’t read chrisg.com, I highly recommend it. Back to the topic at hand, Chris lists 41 blog success tips that he has learned over the years. As I read through these (realizing how much better I should be doing with my own sad little blog), I came to the conclusion that these tips are not just good blogging advice, but good advice for any marketer/manager/worker to follow as well. Continue reading

I have been spending a lot of time thinking about what makes a great blogger. I am obviously still trying to figure it out, but I think you can break bloggers down into 3 types:

  • Personal
  • Professional
  • Passionate

I am immensely proud of the superb use of alliteration there. Just rockin’ the 8th grade English. Let’s get into more detail, and find out which type I think is best… Continue reading

With Technorati tracking more than 108.4 million blogs, why on earth would anyone add to the already overcrowded world of blogging? Especially a blog about internet marketing! To be honest, it was a hard decision to make. I mean, who really has the time, you know? Between work, school, wife, kids & my aggressive television viewing schedule there just doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day to sit down and type. So why do it? Well, here are my 5 best reasons for writing a blogContinue reading