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Brendan Cooper is Editor-in-Chief at byyd, the leading mobile Demand-side Platform.

Praise be, my subscriptions have fallen

Easy as cake. Click image for source.

Easy as cake. Click image for source.

Running a blog about social media and PR is a piece of pie. Just start it up and make the right noises, eventually you wind up with several hundred subscribers.

Same with Twitter. What is everyone talking about on Twitter? Mostly social media, it seems to me.

So it’s with a sense of satisfaction that I notice my subscription rate is going down.

Did I say down? Yes, I meant down. Not up.

Because it means the people who were reading me because they thought I was going to wax lyrical about social media are all disappointed now I’m copywriting for a living. It means my audience is changing to copywriting, which is less popular right now. And this is what I want because I need my audience to change. I don’t care if it’s smaller.

I mean, I’ll still occasionally post about social media – and in fact I’m still doing it in a limited capacity for a couple of clients – but it’s not my primary profession any more.

Piece of pie. Click image for source.

Piece of pie. Click image for source.

Some people think I’m mad. They say I should have continued with it. I’m certainly (or at least probably) going to earn quite a lot less as a fusty old freelance copywriter than a rockstar social media dude, but while I’d rather be rich and happy, if I can’t have both, I’ll take happy any day.

So it might sound like the most bizarre communications strategy to tell people to go away, but I’ve never done things in the Normal Way. If you don’t like what I write, then go away. If you do, then subscribe.

It’s easy as cake.

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3 Comments on “Praise be, my subscriptions have fallen”

  1. paulstallard May 3, 2009 at 11:35 am #

    PR professionals can be a fickle bunch can’t they Brendan. I found that when I changed who I wanted my blog to appeal to I also lost a lot of readers. That said, it didn’t take too long for my new audience to start stumbling accross my blog and the figures soon rose. It is more important to communicate with the right people than the masses.

  2. Ike Pigott May 4, 2009 at 3:41 pm #

    Brendan, you’re hitting at one of the obstacles to RSS as mainstream adoption.

    If you want to have a “top blog” with high-levels of subscription, you need either a team of writers loading it with content or a narrow enough niche that you can own.

    I had many people tell me that I needed to “focus” my site, because it wasn’t apparent to new readers what I was about. (As though ‘getting readers’ is the be-all end-all motive.)

    Write what you wish. I read you because you are a great writer, and you bring original insights to the table. Every time. You aren’t a parrot out to chase the trendy subjects like those who are really chasing subscribers to feed their validation.

    Those who play the game may have bigger numbers, but they don’t have a loyal audience.

    I’m not leaving. ;)

  3. Brendan May 4, 2009 at 7:03 pm #

    @ike – I’m glad you’re sticking around! Nice one. :)

    @Paul – yes, and that’s my point: I’m actually quite surprised at how the audience changeover is so apparent. Having said which, for some strange reason I’m starting to get lots of subs to my friendfeed. This interests me. I wonder whether friendfeed is going to be a new Big Thing. I’ve been thinking this for a while but I really don’t know why suddenly, people are starting to use it. Food for a new post maybe?