Look for the bright spots.
We are taught to find problems and fix them. I bet if I asked you to talk about your blog, you would immediately think of ten things that need to be fixed.
- Stan, I’m not getting enough traffic.
- Stan, I’m not making any money.
- Stan, I can’t get my optin form to work.
This focus on the negative however has a hidden drawback. You overlook the bright spots, the stuff that is working well.
Think about this for a moment. What is going incredibly well for your blog (or business) right now?
Let’s try something different and focus on the positive and go “all-in” on the good stuff. Here’s a few example’s to get your creative juices percolating:
Getting great comments?
Tweet about the discussions happening in your comments. This will pull curious onlookers over to your blog for a look. Look for opportunities to surprise and delight your commenters. Imagine if you spontaneously offered a $25 gift card to Amazon to a someone who submitted a thoughtful contribution.
Getting people to sign-up for blog updates?
Look for other spots to place your blog updates optin form. Try putting it in your blog header or after each post. Up the ante by offering content for free to increase conversions even more.
Getting great mentions and links from other bloggers?
Take advantage of the attention by submitting a guest post to your new admirers. Look for opportunities to mention your blogging fans in posts and on social outposts (Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter).
Doing What Works Saves Time
The hardest decision to make in business is deciding where to spend your time. Diagnosing, studying, and devising solutions to problems is important but time intensive.
I remember spending hours helping a person fix an SEO problem only to find they were doing exceptionally well attracting leads with special reports and other lead magnets. We tabled the SEO debate and worked on a plan to ramp up their content development. The results from focusing on the positive has been quick and positive.
Focusing on the bright spots sounds counterintuitive. But business blogging is about moving quickly and taking advantage of opportunities. Getting bogged down in theoretical exercises saps momentum and wastes valuable time.
What if You Don’t Have any Bright Spots?
Sometimes the news is all bad. Everything is a problem and nothing is working. In this case, focus on the problems that excite and motivate you. Starting here insures that you’ll have the emotional energy and resolve to creatively attack the problem. In this case, you’re looking for the emotional bright spot and using that energy to get quick results.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. We tend to overlook bright spots because our expectations are too high. We ignore a .5% increase because we were looking for a 50% increase. Look through your data and analyze any area that is showing even the slightest performance increase. Focusing on these small wins could lead to bigger improvements down the road.
Stan, You Don’t Get It. My Blog and Business Really Does Suck!
Sometimes the only option you have is to fold your cards. Successful entrepreneurs know how and when to “quit”. Walking away from an ill-fated blog or business is a mark of maturity. Gather your energy and chart a new path.
I’ve learned that the most successful bloggers learned how to pivot from a failing topic to another subject that resonated with their objectives and audience. Sometimes, a blogger will pivot several times before settling on a winning niche.
When To Fix Problems
You can’t ignore the problems forever. Once you’ve squeezed all you can from successful tactics, turn your focus to the problems. Decide if fixing the problem will make a noticeable difference to your goals. If the problem merits attention, set aside time to focus 100% of your attention on fixing it – quickly. The goal is to rapidly diagnose the problem and decide on a course of action to test. In the end, you have to decide if the problem can be fixed and the cost. Many times you’ll find that fixing the problem isn’t worth the investment in time.
What are your bright spots?
Briefly, talk to me about the bright spots you see in your blog. Tell me what you are doing right in the comments.