The best reason to blog your blogging schedule and not publish a post
Feb. 26, 2016
Last week, I didn’t publish a post. I came close. The post I almost published is saved on my hard drive, right next to the Word Document containing this one. It’s over 1,000 words, with a headline and a target keyword and a snappy introduction.
So, why didn’t I publish it?
Good question. Here’s the answer: It was crap.
If that’s not the best reason for not publishing a post according to the good ol’ blogging schedule, then I don’t know what it.
I don’t know what it’s like to be in your head when you’re writing crappy content, but when I’m in my head, I can tell in real time if what I’m writing just doesn’t measure up. How? I’m just not into it. After eons of writing good stuff and bad stuff, I know that I write at my highest level when I am feeling it. The words just flow.
Now, I’m not saying they’re all good words, or that there’s no editing required, or that my first draft isn’t rough. But the flow is very much there. I don’t have to reach for what to say next and I don’t have to stretch to fill the space.
I am willing to concede, however, that the writing climate in your head is unlike the writing climate in my head. So, use this handy checklist to see if you are quite possibly (probably, rather) in the middle of a truly terrible, no good, very bad blog post:
Crappy blog posts don’t just damage your psyche, guys. They hurt your relationship with your audience.
What you think of as one post out of the hundred you might publish this year, a new reader might come be introduced to you through this crappy post and assume the rest of your content is crappy.
A loyal reader might be on an “unsubscribe” tear and let this one crappy post be the deciding factor on whether or not they keep reading your stuff.
A potential client might love the promise of your headline but feel disappointed by the delivery. That potential client isn’t going to convert.
Publishing crappy content doesn’t pay dividends. It doesn’t do anything but keep your blogging schedule on track. Here’s a question I want you to ask yourself: Would I rather have a reputation for posting like clockwork, or for writing really great content?
I know which one I’d pick. Unless you’re still the kid with the coveted perfect attendance certificate, I’m pretty sure which one you’ll pick, too.
I want you to close your eyes. Envision a winged book floating down from the heavens. It’s old and enormous, the type of book that would be stored by archival librarians behind glass on a lovely little pedestal. A ribbon holds the page open. And here’s what that page says:
That’s it, guys. That’s the golden rule. Publish content that you’re proud you wrote. Publish content that you want to show off. Publish content that you can’t wait for other people to read.
Got that? Good.