Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Rummaging Around for a Blog Post

In the last week, I've done two posts linked to Wall Street Journal articles that have attracted plenty of hits. I also did one that I thought was a sure-fire hit, but never went anywhere. I still don't quite understand how they link to blogs. The Washington Post links to you on the article's page no matter what. If there are more than five, then they rotate through the blogs linking to their article. For the WSJ, it looks like they only list linking blogs if that story is in their top ten most blogged about stories.

Like I said, it's confusing.

WSJ readers bring their wallets. In the two posts that got the big hits, my AdSense click-through rate rose by a factor of 10. In contrast, my cat and World of Good posts get lots of hits, but have click-through rates near zero.

I just stopped by and checked out the Carnival of the Capitalists and Carnival of Personal Finance and found that the number of people posting had doubled since the last time I looked. That's the definition of the long tail. Lots and lots of content providers.

I also found something called the Carnival of The Law of Attraction. As near as I can tell, The Law of Attraction is a total fraud designed to separate money from suckers. Essentially, it says that certain people have luck because they attract it. Actually, certain people have luck because, statistically, in a nation of 300 million, you're going to find people where the breaks all go their way in life. There's a huge, undeniable correlation of good things happening to people who get and stay married, save money, acquire desired skills and stay sober. Not much luck there.

In rooting around through those finance carnivals, I came up with another reasons I don't like Google as a stock. There is almost no barrier to exit for their customers. There's no lack for competitors as web hosts or search engines. By contrast, there are no competitors for Northrop Grumman's aircraft carrier construction business.

Let's see the folks at Mountain View bend compound curves in 3' thick plate steel. Or anyone but Northrop Grumman, for that matter.

Last in my list of totally disconnected topics, I have to say that I have avoided using Technorati, del.ici.ous and digg in my posts because I hate the way they make them look. I used Technorati for a while and found that it added nearly nothing to my hit count. I'm too far down the long tail to get any hits from viral marketing. I may reconsider that, but as I write this I realize that the start of this blog post shows me why it's not worth it.

What I want are certain visitors, like my friends in the blogosphere and folks coming over from the WSJ, not totally random ones. If I'm going to go for a completely random readership, I might as well subscribe to the theory underlying The Law of Attraction and hope for some magical hit from a big time blogger who falls in love with The Scratching Post and then links to me frequently, like Instapundit does with Ann Althouse.

There's a blog post somewhere in all of that.


Kukka-Maria said...

Generating traffic is a shot in the dark. I've finally given up worrying about the hits and just writing what I want to write. It makes my blogging experience so much richer. (Not that I don't look at my counter daily...)

Sadly, since I wrote the tongue-in-cheek post about Pet Porn, I get about 5-10 hits a day from people Googling that phrase.

Sickos!!! I think I'd much rather have them stay away and my numbers suffer, than know there are sick effers lurking around. :)

Anonymous said...

I agree with you Kukka traffic is a shot in the dark. The only way was to comments and partipate in blog communities.

Love it Pet Porn. hmmm there are real sick people around or maybe its for their pets ;)

Anonymous said...

I disagree with you about The Law Of Attraction!

Here is a copy of a recent post I did at zaletabakman.ca
Is The Law Of Attraction True?

Posted by zaletabakman on January 4th, 2007

If The Law Of Attraction is a new concept to you, I strongly advise that you get your own copy of The Secret.

My friend and business partner Taimour from The Access Group gave me a copy. It came just when I needed it.
(a small joke)

To make a powerful and involved process simple, The “Law Of Attraction” states that anything that happens to you comes because it is attracted to you through your thoughts. Practically speaking, this means if you expect trouble - you get trouble. If you expect good things to happen, good things happen. The main explanation to “The Law Of Attraction” is that the universe changes to provide you what you attract. Hence my small joke.
Before we go to far - I believe in The Law Of Attraction and believe you should too.

However, many people who see a contradiction with “The Law Of Attraction” and reality.

There are those who are at odds with its existence. For example Ming The Mechanic and Naoshi on Vox. Basically, they believe there is no way to prove “The Law of Attraction” works or doesn’t work. Simplified, the proof for “The Law Of Attraction” goes like this - If you don’t believe in it, that’s why things bad things happen. If you do believe in it and good things don’t happen, then you didn’t have complete focus. Effectively there is no proof.

A criticism was mentioned by Steve Pavlin (who is a fellow believer) says: If a child is abused, does that mean the child intended it in some way?

One of my friends criticized it by stating - What happens if somebody focuses on something totally impossible? For example, a fifty year old over-weight guy wanting to play in the NBA?

Many Bloggers give deep metaphysical answers to this quandary. Since I can’t understand most of what they are writing - I prefer a practical solution that will work for me today.

The problem with the above complaints about “The Law Of Attraction”, is that they take it too literally, meaning its a “Law” or they don’t have enough faith in themselves.

The first is easy to explain. Any physical law, such as “The Law Of Attraction” is only a theory that explains our current understanding of reality. For example, “The Law Of Gravity”, “Natural Selection”, “Every action has an equal and opposite reaction”, E=MC2. All these “Laws” are theories that explain natural phenomenon. They are not proven in any literal sense. Experiments are performed, results are observed, and theories are agreed upon. We can “trust” these laws, because it allows engineers to build buildings, it allows man to fly, it allows us to study nature. Science uses this approach to move forward. Many scientific “Laws” have been discredited over the years. Its doesn’t discredit science - it just demonstrates that these laws enable society to advance.

The “Law of Attraction” is the same. Its a theory that works in our world with our current understanding of the world.

So why does it work and why should you take it to heart?

a) You will continually make the choices that gets what you want. For example: if your focus is on getting a Saturn Sky (a great boy toy), instead of going to see a movie you will put in the time to make a few more sales calls, send a few more e-mails, or put another entry into your blog.

b) Your mind will open up to new choices. When a new or different opportunity comes along, you will ask yourself the question - “Will this get me what I want sooner rather than later?” It will push you beyond your comfort zone.

c) Your friends can help you. People are wonderful. I am continually amazed at how helpful people are in helping me achieve my goals. If I tell them what I want to achieve, they will many times help in different ways that I couldn’t have imagined. The larger the goal, the more they are willing to help. But be careful, simply tell people what your goal is, not how they should help you. That way they will feel ownership in helping you achieve your goal.

d) You won’t give up in the face of challenge. Each and every one of us has faced challenges on achieving our goals. And whenever you have met your goal - you can always look back and see that no matter how bleak things looked at some point, you were successful because You Did Not Give Up.

d) A bonus for fellow religious types. It says in Pirkei Avos [2:21] (”The Ethics of Our Fathers”) “You are not required to complete the task, but yet you are not free to withdraw from it” This Mishna refers specifically to the study of Torah - I also take it less more metaphysically - it is my responsibility to start everything - if its important to be completed the Master of the Universe’s will ensure it finishes. If I don’t take my responsibility to start - he won’t help.

So, the first step in achieving your goal is to start believing in “The Law Of Attraction”.

Have a wonderful day.


Anonymous said...

I thought you and your readers might be interested in this...
The Oprah broadcast of "The Secret" will be February 8th. Also, it will be followed by an International Law of
Attraction Teleconference. If you want more info go to http://www.lawofattractionteleconference.com.
Also, the more posts that Oprah gets on her message boards about a particular topic, the more inclined she is to
repeat the topic. So go to www.oprah.com and find the message board for “The Secret” to let her know that you
want more of the same!
Spread the word!