Posted on December 20, 2007
Filed Under Blogs |
The strategic thinking aspect of an MBA is worthless. Why? Because it is EXACTLY the same strategic thinking that your competitors are using. Think of business like a poker game or trading the stock market…if most people are playing based on the same set of strategic rules, then it is going to be the “maverick” who changes the dynamic of the game and can exploit the weakness of ALL competition with a single strategic difference.
I was thinking about his comment today as I looked at the links to Businesspundit in Technorati. I noticed that my hastily published post Management by Semantics received several incoming links, while a post I spent a lot of time on, The Google of Eden, didn’t get squat. The interesting thing about the former is that it came from a quote I found in a book. The latter was a response to another blog post.
As I thought about this, I realized that over the 5 years I’ve been blogging, my most popular posts have not come from following the blogosphere. They haven’t been the result of me responding to some online conversation. They haven’t been on techmeme. They have all been original stuff, stuff that I thought of when I wasn’t in front of a computer. My most popular post of all time, How to Network For Introverts came from a lunch conversation with a friend. The second most popular post of all time, my criticism of the book “Good to Great”, came when a friend of mine made a random comment about one of the companies in the study. Do you see a pattern emerging? Not one of my top 20 posts was on a popular blogosphere topic. Not one of them was about me “being part of the conversation.” Not one of them was anything other than a random observation or encounter that led to an idea.
In the early days of blogging, I read a lot and linked a lot, but now, to stand out, you have to take Andy’s comment into account. If you read the top blogs on the web, well, so does everyone else. Why are you suddenly going to have different ideas of what to write about?
My advice, if you want to become a better blogger, is not to read so many blogs. Or mix them up, rotating through a different list each week. I know, I know, you are afraid you will “miss something.” Miss what? Anything that is really important will filter up to a higher level of news anyway. Maybe that isn’t what you are concerned about. Maybe you are looking for that diamond in the rough - that unpopular piece of information that will somehow make all the difference to your life. Well, you may find that, but you will have to read so much redundant crap to get to it, that won’t be worth the tradeoff.
If you want to stand out, get your ideas from some place that other people don’t. Blogging is about differentiation, and to get different outputs, you need different inputs. So shut down that RSS reader. Pick up a book or a magazine. Chat with a friend. Find your blogging ideas in life, not in other blogs. You, and your readers, will enjoy your posts more.