The Blogofear

In short, blogging terrifies me. Well maybe not “terrifies”, but it certainly makes me uneasy. Why would anyone want to read what I’ve got to say? Won’t it just help fill up a hard drive somewhere in the “cloud” that will be deleted and crushed by some giant robot rubbish compactor well into the post-apocalyptic future?

Well…maybe not, but reading Ryan Rancotore’s post entitled “The 85% Rule of Personal Branding” resonated with me a great deal, because of this fear of creating rubbish content. He clearly and in my mind quite rightly points out that the majority of work needs to be done “behind the scenes”.  So one of my biggest takeaways from this is that I really need to spend more time reading other’s blogs to begin to comprehend what it is that makes a good one. As I don’t normally read them, I’m starting off from a pretty hollow place when it comes to understanding them, critiquing them and especially creating them.

Add to this that I’ve never really considered personal branding in any way beyond my linked in page and my online portfolio. Which only my linked in page has had any upkeep since 2010, and does that break any cardinal rules of personal branding? Who knows…? I generally try to keep my online presence segregated into my personal life and my professional (which I guess is this brand we’re all talking about). For instance I’ve now got two twitter accounts, one for personal use and now one for this subject. I guess some people are able to have the all in one approach, but I don’t want to be “on” all the time. Am I the only one? And is this a flaw into my approach to personal branding?

Whilst thinking about how to tackle this project, I realised that this is unlike any other “project” I’ve ever undertaken. Especially because a project is generally defined as having a start and end date, whereas this will require constant research, development and improvement for it to be successful. It was for this reason I really liked Amanda Belton’s first post this week. Not only because it was clear, concise and really focussed, but most of all because her strategy really honed in on this sense of continual improvement. Which, when considered, proves the 85% strategy mentioned earlier. While content is the driver of your brand, most of the time shouldn’t be spent developing it, it ought to focus on research, reflection, self-assessment & evolution.

I expect this viewpoint will no doubt change over time and I’m really curious to know how.


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About andrewdcook

Project Manager/Animator/Beer Snob

8 responses to “The Blogofear”

  1. Amanda Belton says :

    That’s a great article highlighting the need for the ‘below the waterline’ work that needs to be done. It’s a good balance to the branding advice that talks about how to get your personal brand out there. It’s certainly been a different project thinking about our own personal brand, I’ve found it a discomforting but ultimately worthwhile exercise, how about you – now that you’ve finished the post do you feel like it’s been worthwhile?

  2. andrewdcook says :

    Cheers Amanda, still relatively unsure how worthwhile it’s been but it was good to get the ball rolling, I think that the greatest source of anxiety was just breaking the duck so to speak. 🙂

  3. aureliequt says :

    Good morning Andrew!
    You’re asking if it is a flaw to your personal branding strategy to separate your personal from your professional online identity. In my opinion it is exactly what personal branding should be about!
    As you’re addressing to two different kind of audiences who don’t have the same interests and needs (your friends and family OR your future employer, coworkers or people working in your field) you need to adapt your blog content to these different targeted readers.
    It works the same way as if you were developping a branding strategy for a product. You would adapt the product itself, its price, the way you advertise the product to your targeted customers depending on if it was designed for children or for adults.
    Therefore the segmentation marketing theory should also be applicable in a personal branding strategy if you want to provide relevant content to your followers and turn them into loyal readers.

    Nice title by the way! I love the wordplay 😉

    • andrewdcook says :

      Good evening Aurelie 🙂
      I’m really glad to hear that you feel the same about the branding strategy, good to know there’s more of us out there 🙂 I do however get the feeling that it will become an ever increasing challenge to keep the two completely separate!

  4. shaungoossens says :

    Hi Andrew,

    Just like you I have tried to keep my online presence to a minimum, guess we are now both forced into the open.
    Will be interesting to see how this journey goes for us!

    – Shaun

  5. PrapatW says :

    Hi Andrew, I was confused by your title before I read the post but it turn out quite interesting as a concept about blogging. I’m new to blogging as well and I was a little bit “terrified” too. I hope we overcome our fear and make our blog successful.


    Prapat W.

    • andrewdcook says :

      Hi Prapat, you know the more i think about it the more i realise that it’s probably a lot like public speaking, we just gotta keep doing it over and over again until it becomes like second nature 🙂

  6. sukhshans says :

    Hi Andrew,
    Being new to the social media concept and blogging, it was hard for me to come up with something to write on my blog. I too started to question myself on what i should write and would that get audience. After reading through other blogs and quite a bit of thinking, I decided to go with what I am comfortable with and hope that would bring out my passion to the readers. Hope you would enjoy writing your post and I have learned to enjoy mine.


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