Over the last decade I’ve come across some common blogging challenges. I’ve experienced many myself. And they have been recurring. And I’ve seen others mention specific challenges. They seem to be consistent. They seem to occur in just about every situation.
The good news is that persistence seems to be the main key to overcoming just about any blogging challenge. The long you fight through something the more likely you are to find the right solution. The one that works for your unique situation.
First, let’s go over a few of the common blogging challenges. Then, let’s look at some of the solutions.
1. Lack Of Inspiration
A common issue with any type of content creation is lack of inspiration. Creating a blog post is easy when inspiration suddenly hits. You reach for the keyboard and the words just flow. You’re actually in the flow state or in the zone. You see things clearly. You’re not focused on anything else. It’s all going into the new blog post.
But then lack of inspiration hits. One week goes by. You wait for things to get back to normal. Then a month goes by. Now you’re starting to panic. You’re thinking about giving up on the blog.
You’re not alone, there are lots of empty blogs out there because the owners lost their source of inspiration…
2. Lack Of Engagement
Many bloggers go through a period of frustration with the lack of engagement they’re getting. They look at the views and aren’t satisfied. They look at the sharing on social media and don’t see likes and comments. These types of things give us little boosts of energy. They make us want to write and publish more. They make us feel good about what we’re doing.
But engagement doesn’t come quickly in the blogging world. Not if you don’t have an established audience from something else you’ve already done. If, for example, John Grisham would start publishing on his blog I’m sure his large audience of book readers would love to engage.
But if you’re starting from scratch it’s going to take time. Usually years. So it’s a mismatch of expectations for a lot of people and that can drive many blogs to suffer just months into their existence.
3. Lack Of Importance
We all lose interest in something when we lose the feeling of importance. It can creep into our work. It can creep into our personal lives. We start to wonder if the task is fulfilling. We start to wonder if there is reason to continue. We wonder if what we’re doing is making the world a better place.
Blogging can certainly take on this challenge. It can simply start to feel that it lacks importance. Especially with other activities that take higher priority. Blogging is a long-term effort and many times, especially in business, more “urgent” things can take over even if those things aren’t as good as blogging in the long-term.
Now let’s look at a few solutions to these and other challenges…
1. Find A New Muse
A muse is a source of inspiration. Hank Williams famously said that every good songwriter needs to go through a difficult relationship and breakup at least once before they begin writing great songs. Was that true for all? Perhaps not, but the point is that an ex-partner can become a muse. At least for awhile. But eventually you can tap a well dry. You can’t keep going back to it all the time for the same source of inspiration.
This happens in the blogging world too. Without even knowing it we could be running dry from our current well of inspiration. To find another muse you have to look for new sources of inspiration. You have to change your routine a little. You have to read different books, watch different shows, meet and talk with new people.
Change your environment and you change your perspective on life. It awakens your brand (and creativity) after it becomes bored with the same old same.
2. Smaller Tasks + Scheduling
Blogging is actually a fairly involved process. When it’s new and exciting it’s possible to sit at the computer and just hammer out a post and publish it right there. But that isn’t sustainable. Eventually you need to break the entire process of blogging into smaller tasks. And you also need to schedule recurring times for those tasks.
You can still enjoy those moments of spontaneity. Just supplement them with the regular schedule of work.
Songwriting is a great example. The best and most successful songwriters schedule time to write. They keep notebooks of ideas. They schedule time to write and they do this consistently. That doesn’t mean that if inspiration strikes that they won’t write a song “in the moment”. They just make sure to keep the muscle worked out so they keep producing great work.
3. Find New Collaborators
The best partnerships usually only last so long.
Don Henley and Glenn Frey were leading forces in the band, the Eagles. They worked together for a decade creating some of the greatest American rock songs. But toward the end of their run they realized that they needed a break. They couldn’t keep making music together.
After the band took a break, Frey knew he wanted a co-writer for his future solo work. So he asked Jack Tempchin if he would want to get together and see what happened. They did and they were able to create some very successful songs. Henley did the same with Danny Kortchmar and Mike Campbell along with others.
Sometimes when content creation turns stale it’s good to work with someone new. This can be songwriting, video, podcasting and even blogging. If you’re looking for a change, start collaborating on blog posts with someone new. It doesn’t have to work with the first person. Keep looking until you find something that clicks. Then see how far you can take the new partnership.
There are challenges to anything in life and business. Blogging is no different. There will be times when you’re in a rut. Sometimes they last a long time. But hopefully these tips can help you get out of those ruts. You can’t avoid them. And actually in a way they can be a good thing. They get you out of the old habits and into something that could be much better.