(((Readers – today we take a break from our normal routine of aimless rambling and wandering prose to actually discuss something about blogging. I know, we don’t know anything about blogging either, but if you can stay awake through this post, I promise we’ll be back to regularly scheduled programming after this.)))
…hello, hello, is this thing on? ….uh…..hi, everyone, my name is Joe.
….and, uh, well….I just wanted to say that I’m taking the Yakezie Challenge.
I think I’m ready. We’ve been practicing for weeks, getting our form “just right” (or more like right enough). We’re ready to take the plunge.
If I slip and say “we”, like I just did, that’s because I have a partner.
We together are taking the Yakezie Challenge. Yakezie is a group of financial bloggers who selflessly help each other promote the personal finance blogging space and who help promote each other’s blogs. I’ve read so many great posts by Yakezie members and Challengers that it’ll be our pleasure to promote more of these people and their work. In the near term, you’ll begin seeing many of them appear on our blogroll (on our Resources page).
For the Yakezie community, let me introduce the FFA team. We’re kind of like cousin Eddie’s family on Christmas Vacation, only our Winnebago is a little dirtier.
I’m Joe, a 16 year financial planning veteran. Not only did I manage $60M working with around 200 families, I was on television and radio in my hometown dispensing financial advice. If you’ve been one of the three readers of our blog, I want to thank you.
Second, I have a partner, TheOtherGuy. He’s a
ten year 13 year veteran of the financial planning industry. Generally, we keep him in the back room with a pile of code and hashtags. From time to time we loosen the chain enough to let him reach the keyboard when we need another article that actually is meaningful. Normally this will be on insurance or investing.
Although I’m declaring that we’re beginning the challenge, I already feel a strange kinship to several people in the Yakezie community already. You’ve made me feel very much at home, even though at times I haven’t deserved it. We had a ton of misconceptions about blogging when we fired up WordPress for the first time. Here are but a couple:
1) We thought “if you write it, they will come.” Here’s our understanding of how this silly “blogging thingy” worked: you threw stuff on a page and people begged you for more.
Instead, we’ve learned that there are two disciplines here (or more). You have to be able to write succinct, edible prose, but you also have to know how to expose your content to other people. I won’t be the first blogger to admit that I had no idea what a “back link” was and I thought affiliate links were connections to other people’s blogs.
2) We believed that financial blogging was a pretty small discipline. Holy $%^@ there are a ton of blogs out there. In the big scheme of things, there aren’t when compared to other fields, but I thought we’d be in a group of about 100 bloggers chasing eyeballs.
This is all the more laughable because we’re the “do your homework” kind of people. I was never the “here, I’ll take your financial plan and do it for you” kind of advisor. I was always the “I’m going to teach you what you need to know to do this yourself” dude. So, we’ve done our homework on financial planning, but ignored the blogging aspects.
What is the challenge?
– We promise to blog at least twice per week (we’ll be keeping our regular four posts per week schedule you’ve come to know and endure.)
– We promise to promote other Yakezie blogs. This will be easy. I have fun with our Blog Post of the Week! every Friday, and like making the rounds to other blogs to read what everyone else is thinking about.
– We’re going to work to place our blog in the top 200k as based on Alexa ranking in the next six months. Currently, today, we’re 549,616. We’ve been a long way, crossing the 4 million mark around October 1 and the 2 million mark at the beginning of November. It’s been rewarding to see that people will read posts whether we’re sober or talking Oompa Loompas.
Thank you to those who’ve been very supportive so far. You know who you are (I’m WAY afraid I’ll forget someone to begin mentioning names). There have been so many people helping us when we’ve had questions.
I’d also like to end with this note: if you’re a Yakezie member or challenger, don’t feel compelled to promote our site and work unless there’s something you really like. I promise, we’ll do the same. I love to network, but only when it actually is meaningful. I know that there are products I just couldn’t recommend in a million years.
As you get to know us, I hope you’ll want to send readers here for advice and humor. That’s great. We’d like to prove that this is a home for good, quality content and earn your respect.
For TheOtherGuy and I, it’s been a short, strange trip so far. I’m sure the adventure is only going to get better from here.