7 Ways to Bore the Hell Out of People

7 seems like a great number I was looking at the news flow stream thing on LinkedIn just now. Don’t ask. But you know, I thought I’d see if anything was worth my time. I found that pretty much every post fell into two categories: “go to my thing” or “read my bland and boring article.” So, a fun idea came to mind.

7 Ways to Bore the Hell Out of People

  1. Use graphics everyone else would use. Especially people in suits or weird stick men and dollar signs.
  2. Make sure you use a number in the post title, unless it’s an event. Then just say “new event” or “premier event” or “save your seat.”
  3. Use bombastic titles and claims like, “The most outrageous ___ you’ll ever see, and that’s not the half of it!”
  4. Make splelling errors.

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Become a Better Writer Today – Save Your Work From Falling Off the Cliff

It’s amazing what happens when you become a magazine editor. You get to see a lot of people’s writing and think about what it means to deliver a piece of content that works well. Between my own project and the opportunity I’ve had lately to look at dozens and dozens of prospective authors’ works, I’m noticing something very recurring in people’s work: a strong urge for people to write their way off a cliff.

Become a Better Writer Today

If you’re blogging or writing magazine articles, there’s an important piece of the frame you have to improve upon, if you’re most people.…

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Blog Topics Rides Again

Adventure Starts With Curiosity

One of the most common searches that lands people on my site is “What should I blog about?” One day, while talking with Julien Smith, he said, “You should totally do something with that, like start a project or something.” This was, like most advice Julien gives, great advice, and I did. I ended up gathering hundreds of active weekly subscribers to a product that delivered 10 or more post topic ideas per week, plus more. And then I closed it for a little while, because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do next.

Blog Topics for You

Here it is again: Blog Topics is back in a slightly different format.…

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The Graffiti of Your Soul

Graffi-tea

This picture is reasonably beautiful street art. I like it because the artist put some time and effort into it. Sure, it’s just a tag, but it’s also something that you know she or he worked to design and perfect. Several notebook pages went into making this look just right before the Krylon hit the cinder blocks.

Pac Man's Enemies are Thinking Graffiti is often overlooked, and in that sense, it’s kind of like blogging. A great big chunk of society looks at blogging almost the same way many look at graffiti: oh, that’s that thing some people do. It’s all about themselves. It’s all just a bunch of chatter.…

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Take Pride in Your Craft

Kevin Garnett

After winning Game 5 in the NBA’s Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat, the Boston Celtics power forward Kevin Garnett was asked what kept him going, after 17 years in the NBA. He said that he wanted to show people that he was a true professional and that he took pride in the practice of his craft. It resonated with me, especially because today, I’m at BlogWorld Expo in New York City, where I’m giving a talk about what I’ve learned after 14 years of blogging. I would say that what I’ve learned and what I continue to do in this space has everything to do with the hard work of practicing a craft.…

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Nobody Reads Agency Blogs- Or Why You Need Skin in the Game

Dimbie and I

Thanks to Jason Falls, I just read this post about how many marketing agencies are closing down their blogs and tweeting and Facebooking instead.

“Nobody reads agency blogs, and there are so many out there it’s impossible for people to keep up anyway,” said Sam Weston, director of communications at digital agency Huge.

Nobody Reads ANY Blogs- If They’re Boring

I’ll tell you without even having to look why nobody reads a blog: because it’s boring. Because it’s poorly written. Because it’s utterly self-referential.

Nobody has time to read junk.…

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Where Should You Put Your Content?

Print Room Beamish

I’ve been asked by subscribers of my personal newsletter how I decide what goes on my blog and what goes into my newsletter. I think the answer differs depending on your strategy, but I’m more than happy to tell you how I view it. I put information that sells on my blog, and information that nurtures in my newsletter.

Information that Sells

My job, because people seem confused these days as to what exactly it is I do or am selling, is to help mid-sized to larger companies build business (revenue and growth) by improving their use of the human digital channel (social media, email marketing, mobile marketing, content marketing, and other business applications).…

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Watching Mitch Joel Blog

Mitch Joel

I’m a Mitch Joel fan. I’ve also been lucky to have dinner and then breakfast with him over these few days. I’m now watching him blog. It’s fascinating. Mitch is such a smarter writer than me, such a better, more thoughtful blogger. You know, Mitch has a huge past in music journalism. He was a BIG TIME journalist back in the day. And maybe that’s what I’m seeing.

When I watch Mitch blog, what I see is someone who can synthesize other materials around his core idea. Right now, he’s writing about ideas. In a way, I’m scooping him with this blog post because I’ll publish mine much faster than Mitch will publish his.…

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Our Responsibility as Media Channels

Jacqueline Carly

Going into 2012, I’m thinking that we are very responsible to consider what we publish and curate as media channels, should attention, platform-building, and better community relationships be our goal. In thinking about all your various uses of social networks, if you are working with the mindset that they are all tied together as a larger media property for yourself, it becomes important to think about what you’re putting through those channels. Attention is a currency, and if we spend too much of other people’s attention on frivolous posts and shares, we risk losing that attention.…

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We’re No Experts

No Expert

I’m listening to Patton Oswalt read his book (amazon affiliate link) for nerds. It’s a totally wonderful book, and his narration makes it pop up even better still. Why? Because he’s a professional actor, as well as a darned good writer. His voice for this is perfect. His reading isn’t literal to the book. He keeps adding in liner notes. Hell, Michael Stipe from REM shows up in the reading.

This comes the day after I finished reading my own new book. This comes one week after Joe and I interviewed Sean Pratt, professional audiobook reader. Sean points out in that interview that most authors can’t read their own book for crap.…

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