Tuesday, June 10, 2014
I spent this past weekend updating my Art Blog Directory, which now lists 490 links to creative blogs. The update included deleting over 90 former links or nearly 20% of the original total. I deleted links to those blogs that were no longer in existence, that were password protected, and that had no new posts within the last 6 months. There also seemed to be a trend to shifting platforms from a blog-only site (think Blogger or Wordpress) to a link within a website -- and these links were updated too.
As I clicked through the hundreds of links for the update, I took the time to (quickly) scan each blog. I was struck by the fact that some posts captured my attention and others less so. My favorite posts were those that focused on one or more of the following: highlighting artwork - whether completed or in progress, sharing detailed content about the artist's process, discussing issues (positive or negative) related to creativity and life as an artist, presenting tutorials, and reviewing topics (for example, a list of 10 favorite art books or 5 ways to prevent creative block).
My least favorite posts seemed to be those that were overly self promoting. HOWEVER, it is these types of posts that got me to thinking about the balancing act that many bloggers -- including myself -- go through. For those of us who have a blog that supports a creative career and an income generating business, our blogs are almost by definition advertisements. The trick is to find a way to be able to share what you have to offer to your readers in a way that does not become overly self promoting. Not an easy balance to achieve.
I am curious to hear thoughts from other bloggers who may be grappling with a similar issue and thoughts from readers who have experienced both compelling posts and those that are, well...not so much. In other words: what turns you on and what turns you off in a blog?