In “Blog Exercises: How Many Posts? the exercise asked you to consider how many posts you should publish within a specific time period on your site, such as by day, week, month, or year. The goal was to set self-deadlines and monitor how many posts you felt were appropriate to publish within that time period.
Today’s Blog Exercise takes that exercise to the next level and asks how many posts can your audience handle?
Gina Trapani started the popular Lifehacker site with a mission to publish multiple posts every day, sometimes as many as 10 a day, with tips and techniques for helping people literally “get things done.” It was this passion, dedication, and discipline that turned Lifehacker into an institution on the web, a source for millions to get the help they need staying organized and solving life’s challenges. Along the way, Gina published several Lifehacker books, expanding her reputation as well as publishing exposure. Her goal was to serve as many people as possible with her magazine format and style blog.
People were so hungry for a site like this, they couldn’t get enough. The demand kept increasing, turning Lifehacker into a successful business with multiple employees to keep up with the demand.
Many successful bloggers publish one or two posts a month, totally satisfied, and their audience is content with that number as well.
Others publish many posts every day, but their audience is quickly overwhelmed, thus avoid the site.
What about you? You’ve established your production limits and potential, but what about your audience. How much content do they need from you? How many are you serving?
In “When the Burden of Support is Too Great,” “Feed Fatigue,” and “Blogging Burnout Prevention Tips: How Do You Handle the Information Overload?” I wrote about blog burnout and referenced the burnout of the audience from being overwhelmed by too much information.
In Feed Fatigue” I share a quote from Seth Godin:
Blogs are different than most other forms of media in one key respect: they stretch.
TV and radio confront the reality that there are only 24 hours in a day. They can’t put on more content, because there’s no down time.
Magazines and newspapers have to pay for paper, and that means ads, but there are only a finite number of people willing to pay. So the length finds a natural limit.
…But blogs… you can easily post 100 times a day. With a team, it might be a thousand.
This wouldn’t be a problem except for the fact that in many cases, volume leads to traffic. Take a look at the top 10 blogs and you’ll notice that many of them post dozens of times a day.
Just like the marketers of Oreo (now in 19 flavors of cookies) we’re dealing with clutter by making more clutter.
RSS [feed] fatigue is already setting in. While multiple posts get you more traffic, they also make it easy to lose loyal readers.
There is so much information about there, are you a part of the problem or the solution?
Your blog exercise today is to find out whether or not you are flooding your audience with too much information, or offering too little.
You may wish to blog about this, asking your audience how you are doing and how often they think you should publish articles on your site, or publish a poll or survey. Check in with your social media channels and community to ask them how much is too much on your blog, or too little.
How much does your audience want from you?
Then match their response with your ability to maintain your blogging pace. Do the numbers match?
Remember to include a hat tip link back to this post to create a trackback, or leave a properly formed link in the comments so participants can check out your blog exercise task.