Ten years ago tonight, I became a blogger. I’ve always loved writing, and on New Year’s Eve 2005 took the plunge with TypePad. Within minutes, I had a blog, which I called Ertblog, and as Big Ben sounded the start of 2006 I published my first post, Welcome to 2006.
That first post, above, was very short, but it marked my entry to the blogosphere. Later that year, I highlighted the growing influence of blogging in my keynote speech to the Chartered Institute of Public Relations’ 2006 Northern Conference.
A decade on, I’m a more occasional blogger. I moved from TypePad to WordPress in 2012 to take advantage of WordPress’s more sophisticated and mobile-friendly platform. (The smartphone was barely out of nappies when I started blogging 10 years ago; now it’s got kids of its own.) I go through phases when I blog several times a week, such as during our Dorset holiday at Greenwood Grange, Lower Bockhampton, in 2014. But life usually gets in the way – and in the summer, I’d rather be out on the bike.
To echo Stephen Waddington’s blogpost this week, ‘How to’ posts often generate the most traffic. My most popular post in recent years explained how to edit GoPro videos on Apple’s iMovie. Another explained how to show BBC iPlayer programmes on Apple TV.
Stephen also comments that personal posts do well. I agree. Looking back on my 10 years of blogging, two early posts that did very well featured my reflections on the Falklands War in 1982 and memories of Dai Woodham’s famous steam locomotive graveyard at Barry Island, South Wales. By coincidence, I visited Barry three days before Argentina invaded the Falklands. That day, I saw the remarkable sight of two British Railways logos on this Southern Railway S15 loco, along with the original Southern lettering, 34 years after the railways were nationalised.
Like Stephen, I’ll try to give my blogging a personal touch in 2016.
Happy new year!
Congrats. 🙂 My, how time flies, eh!
Respect for a decade in the game. I’ve only been at it for two years but recognise your acomplishment – people who don’t do it themselves probably wouldn’t understand just how much effort it takes. How did you build an audience though before Facebook/Twitter?
Thanks Twm! To be honest, I’ve got a modest audience, although writing about subjects you care about and commenting on other people’s content makes a difference.