Why “Just Write From the Heart” Is Such Unhelpful Writing Advice
“Just write from the heart.”
That’s the blog-writing advice I got once upon a time after downloading a free 60-page report. It advertised itself as revealing “5 Ways to Make a Blog Go Viral” or some such thing. And so I subscribed to the guy’s list to see what it said.
Honestly, I figured it was going to be a giant waste of time. So it’s not like I was all that disappointed when a thorough skimming yielded 60-pages worth of unhelpful blog-writing advice.
I can’t even remember what the other four points were. They were that uninspiring.
For that matter, the only reason I can remember, “Just write from the heart,” is because it’s so cliché on top of being uninspiring.
How many people actually become mid- to long-term blog writers if they’re not writing about subject matter they care about? I haven’t taken a scientific poll, admittedly, but I’m guessing most people who blog do so because they like to blog.
As a professional freelance blogger, believe me, I come across small businesses all the time who don’t have that passion. And so they just don’t bother. They hire me to do it instead.
So all of that “Be free. Don’t let the man define you! Rah rah” blather is downright condescending. We already know to “write from the heart.”
What we want to know is how to make a blog go viral already. That’s why we clicked on your stupid 60-page report in the first place: for you to give us something worthwhile, not just to pad out your subscription list and your ego along with it.
Or is that just me?
On the assumption that it’s not, completely forget the “Write from the heart” report filler. For that matter, forget “5 Ways to Make a Blog Go Viral” altogether.
Focusing on any ways to make a blog go viral is a waste of your time. You’re either going to go viral or you’re not. It's really not up to you one way or the other.
Ask anyone who did – it’s literal luck of the draw.
What is up to you, however, is your marketing scheme and therefore your ability to get a healthy amount of subscribers or followers.
Not billions, mind you. But a healthy amount nonetheless.
And no, it’s not through search engine optimization.
Gone are the days when you can reasonably rely on SEO tricks and tactics to rank up nice and high on a Google search. The internet gods changed the whole game this year, and now you have to write 1,500-word pieces to get recognized.
If you’re anything like me, you don’t have time for that. Which means you’re going to have to pay to play instead.
Before you point out that you also don’t have the kind of financial resources to throw thousands of dollars at a marketing company every month… breathe. There are ways to handle this without breaking the bank.
You probably don’t even have to give up your weekly Starbucks habit. (Maybe your daily one though. I don’t know.)
Check into running Facebook ads, Pinterest ads, Instagram ads or something similar. Facebook especially is a good idea for the following reasons:
Despite its negative public perception at the moment, it’s not dead. Far from it.
The “older” crowd is still on Facebook, and those people are probably the ones with the resources you’re looking for (i.e., the $$).
It’s really quite cheap to run an ad there, allowing you to test out different marketing messages on different audiences.
Yes, it’s cheaper to “just write from the heart.” Or to download a free report on “5 Ways to Make a Blog Go Viral.”
But if you want worthwhile blog-writing advice, here it is... You have a much better chance of making it somewhere by running the right kind of ad.