I’ve been experimenting with two different approaches to launching a new blog recently: just going live with it, and in contrast, build it up quietly, then launch.
It’s been interesting comparing the two methods and how they’ve affected my attitude towards the blog itself.
Doing it Quietly
Go! Chris! Go! is my new personal blog. Or at least it will be when I finally “push the button” and put it live. I’ve been quietly building it behind a password-protected curtain, writing content, tweaking design details and functionality… Doing the things we often hear recommended to us.
On the whole, I’ve found the process rather uninspiring. When you’re behind a veil where no one can see you there is less motivation to push yourself. Maybe I’m just finding this on this site because it’s a personal blog, but I’m sure I’ve felt this way on any site I’ve worked on. As such, I’m not making much (if any) process on the site and it’s close to being stillborn.
Until you’re in the public firing-line, when the praise and criticism are flying, you’ll never know if you’re going in the right direction or not. Ultimately, if you’re putting anything on the internet – this most public of public forums – it’s because you want other people to see it.
Just Do It!
By contrast, The Get Rich Project(GRP) was done in the most direct manner: a wordpress install, apply the Hemingway theme and write like there’s no tomorrow…
And write I have! In the last week I’ve managed more posts on the GRP than I have in a month on most of my other blogs. There is a lot more energy behind this blog than any I’ve worked on before and it’s proving to be great fun! Even for such a (usually) dry subject as personal finances.
An extension of this type of site launch is the so-called “live” redesign – where a website is redesigned in “real time” while people are still able to visit. I’ve done a couple of this type of redesign and in each case they’ve proven to be fun, enjoyable experiences.
When launching in this way, I made sure I had written a few decent posts before I started doing any of the usual “marketing” – del.icio.us, forums, etc. This way I should hopefully avoid the “empty shell” effect normally associated with launching in this fashion.
Not everything will be optimised off-the-bat, but I’d argue that no blog is optimised on launch – no matter how much planning you put into it. You just never know how people will react until it is in the wild. You can apply your own (and others) past experience as much as you want, but each blog is unique so you’ll never know for sure.
Give it a Go
Next time you have a blog to launch, consider trying the “just launch it” method. With maybe a little prior planning, starting-up this way can prove to be an effective way of igniting that extra little spark of passion that reminds you blogging is still as much about fun and “doing things different” as it is about business and making money.
I’m hoping to repeat the personal feeling of success I now have at the end of this first week of the GRP with two other blogs I now have in the pipeline.