I am aware that you might consider this an extraordinarily tenuous link.
Worse still, many of you may be thinking, “What on earth is cricket?” The specifics are not particularly important — I could be talking about any sport. What is important is how my experience today provides a great metaphor for the fickle world of blogging.
What Does This Have to Do With Blogging?
Bear with me for two minutes and it will all come together — I promise.
I play for my local village cricket team (very English, I know). We had a great day today. We batted first and put on a decent score. We then bowled them out for 31.
In case you don’t know, that is a spectacularly low score. In fact, in my 15 or so years of watching and playing cricket, I have never seen such a low score in either amateur or professional formats of the game. Look to a 70-0 American Football Score or a 15-0 soccer score as comparisons.
Where Are You Going With This?
Here’s the twist: I woke up this morning and loathed the thought of playing cricket. I have had an absolute nightmare of a season. I was ready to throw the towel in for the foreseeable future. I hated cricket. I was a failure.
And now? I can’t wait to get out there again. I took 9 wickets, for 23 runs, in 9 overs — my best ever figures, an all-time club record, and better figures than most cricketers could ever possibly hope to achieve in all of their years of playing. All of this, on the back of a completely hopeless run, where it felt like success was an unreachable target.
How Does This Link to Blogging?
Blogging is often just like my cricketing experience.
You might spend weeks or months working your tail off, for little or no reward. You are ready to throw the towel in, just like I was. It seems hopeless, and you’re getting nowhere. But then, completely out of the blue, you get a spike of traffic. Perhaps a big time blogger mentions you. Perhaps Google finally sits up, takes notice, and plonks your site on the front page.
All that hard work, in one moment of pure concentrated glory, becomes entirely worth it. Everything suddenly gets easier. You’re not scrounging around for scraps of traffic — people are piling in through the front entrance.
This is not a unique occurrence – ask almost any successful blogger and they will talk of this phenomenon. Almost every successful blogger was once a low-traffic, desperate blogger.
So What Can I Learn From This?
Have confidence in the quality of your content, have patience in the knowledge that success can be just around the corner, and capitalize when the traffic arrives on your doorstep. Bear those three things in mind and you can go far. When you are at your wit’s end and ready to give up, don’t give up.
And as for my cricketing future? Well, I’m certainly playing again next week, that’s for sure! Wild horses couldn’t stop me!