August 23, 2011


building trust with a squirrelYou're reading a blog. That's easy.
Why not write a blog? That's easy
— probably easier than you expect.

A is for Apple

When you were a child, reading took practice. Yet you wanted to learn. Maybe you started with cloth books that jingled when you shook them. You were soon ready for Dr. Seuss. Now you can read (and understand) these 10 difficult books. I can't but you can. Congratulations!

B is for Blogging

Consuming content is fine but how does that help with your marketing? Creating content sets you apart and helps build trust. Yes, there is a learning curve. Yes, you need discipline. You've shown you have both by getting where you are today.

C is for Concerns

Attend Word11 (click for details)You can certainly blog. What's holding you back? Perhaps concerns like these:
  1. What do I write about?
  2. Is my writing good enough?
  3. How do I get started?
  4. How do I keep shipping?
  5. How much time do I need?
  6. Where do I find the time?
  7. What if I run out of ideas?
  8. How do I invite traffic?
  9. Is blogging better than writing a book?
  10. How authentic must I be?
  11. How do I measure my success?
You sure have a lot of questions. To get answers, immerse yourself in the Word11 blogging festival in Toronto this Saturday (Aug 27, 2011).

S is for Shipping

My approach to blogging is a tad unconventional. Actuaries aren't known for their skill with words. I have no formal training in writing. I wasn’t required to submit a single essay in university. I learned by observing and practicing. Monkey see, monkey do.

I noticed that I was trusting amateur bloggers over paid professionals. Bloggers were more conversational and more engaging. When I started blogging on February 3, 2007, I didn’t know what I was doing or even why. Monkey read, monkey write.

Here’s the first post on the now dormant anything-goes Spark Insight blog: Measure twice. I quickly saw that I needed to focus. On the 13th, I started this blog as a detour to proving my expertise. Here’s the first post: Testing 1-2-3. On the 18th, I started Riscario Insider with What’s in a name? as a direct link to my expertise. Eventually, I got into the rhythm of blogging weekly.

This is my 470th post overall.

In the beginning, you may want to read blogs about blogging. I did for a while until I found my own style and voice. I then focused on shipping my own posts. You may find that writing one blog with two posts per week is better than two blogs with one post per week.

W is for Word11

Let's talk face to face at Word11. I'm the first speaker in the Entrepreneurial stream and most of my session will be Q&A.

There's bound to be energy and buzz. You don’t need any blogging experience. Count on meeting attendees with a range of interests and skills. Enthusiasm is catching. This event may be just what you need to get started and/or keep shipping. Drop by, say "hi" and (maybe) blog about your experience. Your audience is waiting.

(new) Here's the live recording.


PS The advance tickets are gone. There are some at the door. Arrive early to snag yours.

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