Monthly Archives: October 2010

3 Reasons I Don’t Guest Blog

In theory, I should be all about the idea of guest blogging.  It’s allegedly a great way to get my thoughts in front of someone else’s audience, or to introduce my audience to someone else’s POV.  And, as any marketing or networking guru will tell you, guest blogging is great for boosting both your traffic and your reputation.

But, with rare exception, I don’t do it.  Here’s why:

  • It’s an ad. Even under the best of intentions, my guest blog for you is really an advertisement of me to your audience, paid for (in time spent) by me.  Or, when reversed, the guest blog post you write for me is really an excuse for you to appeal to my audience.  It probably shouldn’t feel this solipsistic, but it does.
  • I’m busy. I currently owe at least four people guest blog posts.  I like these people, I like their audience, and I presume their audience might like me.  So why haven’t I tried to get their attention with a guest blog post?  Because I barely have time to write my own blog anymore, plus the other blogs I’m paid to write, so why would I voluntarily distract someone else’s loyal audience with a guest post that I’d be half-assing?
  • You trust me. You read my blog because, whether you like me (or agree with me) or not, you want to see what I have to say.  So why would I subject you to someone else?  If I want to direct you toward another person’s ideas, I can link to their blog posts from mine and let you decide if you want to explore them further on your own time. I don’t need to drop them into your lap and expect you to react.

I’m sure you can give me 100 reasons why I’m wrong, and most of them might be very good arguments. Do us both a favor: instead of telling me why I should be guest blogging, please go do it yourself.  You’ll get the notoriety, I’ll get something else accomplished, and we’ll both sleep better at night.

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The 10 Reasons Anyone Follows Anyone on Twitter

Twitter is not Facebook.  By and large, Facebook is the people you know, or used to know, or forgot about until they found you (again).  Twitter is a more vague, more surprising, less personal and ultimately arbitrary collection of people you may or may not know, but who still add value to your day — often, a value that’s more relevant than what you get from Facebook.  (Funny how that happens.)

Look at the list of people you’re following on Twitter and you’ll see they’re there because:

1. You know them.

2. You wish you knew them.

3. You’re pretending you know them.

4. You hope they notice you.

5. You feel obligated to follow them.

6. You’re getting paid to follow them.

7. You want something from them.

8. They inspire you.

9. They educate you.

10. They amuse you.

That’s it.  That pretty much sums it up.  And you might think it’s a wide brush, but really it comes down to two base motivations:

  • They provide you with stimuli that no one else does, or
  • You’re desperate for their attention

Despite all the technology, the time and the millions of dollars they (and we) invest in tools like Twitter, in the end, every social media channel boils down to this:

“You’re cool.  Please say hi.”

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10 Questions You Should Ask Yourself More Often

Life is short.

We’re busy.

Things happen.

And then we die.

In the meantime, here are 10 questions you should ask yourself more often, so you don’t end up running in place between now and then.

  1. What did the 18 year-old me think the current me would be doing?
  2. What is the idealized version of me?
  3. What have I believed all my life without questioning?
  4. Where haven’t I been yet?
  5. What’s one thing I don’t know about my own parents, or grandparents, or kids?
  6. How am I sabotaging my own success?
  7. Why do I pay attention to the stimuli that currently monopolizes my time?
  8. What were my ancestors doing 100 years ago?
  9. Which opportunity would I most want my child to have?
  10. Whom can I help?

Because our lives may march ever onward, but it still helps to keep our eyes on the road.

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Life Lessons: A Stephen Fry Interview

Sometimes I hear someone else’s ideas and I realize there’s nothing I could say that’s more important than simply repeating what they’ve said.  The following interview with Stephen Fry is one of those collections of ideas that’s worth more for me to share than creating something new to distract from it would be.


STEPHEN FRY: WHAT I WISH I’D KNOWN WHEN I WAS 18 from Peter Samuelson on Vimeo.

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