Generally speaking, I have never enjoyed participating in contests or Prom or anything that allowed someone to be singled out based on their popularity. I mean, who am I kidding, I was never the cool kid in High School and, as a bald guy in my mid-30's, my popularity ain't getting any better.
But, in order to understand why this blogging is such a great marketing tool, I have to put my teenage nightmares aside because this is the easiest way to explain it.
I am sure there are plenty of you out there who are, like me, still wondering where the proverbial rabbit gets pulled from when I do a google search. How do those pages get ranked? It can't be strictly on the "best" match because when I put in "Art Linkletter" and number three in the list ends up being a link to "...I wrote a letter to the Art school I attended last week. Here is a link to it online..." from www.IowaAnnie.com, there has to be more to it. (don't waste your time googling Art's name...it was just a hypothetical)
So, I had a guy sit me down and explain it to me. How the how system works with websearches. When he got to the point where the expression on my face went from the glazed over look to "oh my god, I think my brain is going to explode" look, he finally stopped, realizing that I understood nothing he just said.
I got the words "Landing Pages" from the whole 10 minutes and that was about it. Let me save you from this pain so you don't go out and ask your web wizard friend, or your eight year old nephew, which will only cause you to raid your kitchen cupboards looking for anything that says "relief" on it and you end up taking a laxative in your haste instead of a chewable aspirin. (Thus adding to your misery...)
Here it is in a nutshell. A crowd attracts a bigger crowd. Just as the "hot blogs" get more hits because they are being presented as "hot", the more pages that are 'pointing' or linked to another page, the more popular it is. It's like putting fliers up on a college campus. All the fliers are going to point you to that kegger happening this Saturday night. So, putting up a blog is like putting up a flier. The problem is that nobody is going to read the flier if it isn't on HOT PINK paper with catchy lettering and a picture of a guy doing a funnel, right? So, you have to find something witty or insightful or informative to say. (This blog is NOT a good example of that...but I know you guys can come up with something good.)
So, if you have an image in your portfolio that you think is great, but has yet to get alot of traffic, try including it in every single one of your blog posts. Try putting a link to it in your personal webpage. Try putting a link to it in your "I have over 1,000 cats living in my home with me" forum on "Why my pets are all named after Greek Gods" club website.
(Of course, it should be relevant and not simply spam, like I get comments on the blog I have on my personal website (anyone else have problems with the guy who is trying to place Viagra links in comments on your blog???? No? Just me??? ok...moving on.)
By interconnecting a few of your favorite images, it boosts the popularity of both pages, increasing the hits, too (which, I am told, also plays into the status of the google list placement).
So, if you are shying away from diving into the deep end of the blog pool, don't worry! The water's great! Come on in! Enjoy. Just make sure you bring baggy swim trunks (Nobody wants to see you in a speedo, honestly!)
Hope this helps some of you out there. If not, I hope it was at least entertaining to read.