The Death of the Personal Blog

When I started writing this blog, I was very aware of the irony of starting a personal blog in 2017.

Today I was having lunch with my friend and ex-L'Oréal colleague Marie-Sophie Désormeau. She runs HOX académie in Montréal. They focus on digital education and transformation, without all the buzzwords, and with a lot of operational and managerial experience. Here's a photo I took of their business card.

Marie-Sophie told me she liked the blogging approach I took but had many questions about it. She was wondering why I was using my own platform (vs Linkedin for example), what was the content strategy, etc. I told her I didn't think about and I'd write about it.

First, my objectives with blogging are very different from what brands, personalities or public speakers might have. My goal is not real, engagement or conversion. My goal is to write every day, develop my English writing skills and wrap my head around new topics.

My strategy would be a disaster from a marketer's perspective.

I don't have a brand. I didn't create a custom website that represents my brand image, values, etc. I write on my own domain via Squarespace because I like to control the environment. I chose it because it's easy to write on it. There's little customization I can do. But I like to mess around with the software and play with a bit of HTML. It's good enough to get me excited about writing every day. And I'm not afraid someone else will change it.

I don't have a content strategy. I write about things I care about right now. It is focused on strategy, marketing, digital and entrepreneurship. But I can talk about design, arts, money, culture, etc. The content strategy is what's going on in my mind. It will be and should be different in 6 months. It is a bit messy but it works for me.

I don't have a distribution strategy. I post here every day, tweet the articles on my personal account and post once in a while on other platforms. I curate some articles I like and put them on Medium. But I'm not tapping into the power of huge publishing platforms such as Linked In.

I don't have conversion goals. Except clarifying my mind and drawing interesting discussions on few topics I care about. I set up a newsletter opt-in but I'm not sure what I'll do with that.

So no, I don't recommend everyone/every brand start a blog. It is kind of a thing of the past. But it works for me. It is my daily meditation.

Also, I'm thinking about what I read personally and I realize I always end up on the same few blogs. I don't really care about magazines, generic publications or newspapers. I care about what people think. I like to discover and meet people. So I guess I'm trying to do the same here.

Finally, here's a quote that captures the idea of this post:

I don’t read blogs just for information — I read them to get to know the person over time.
— Semil Shah