• On Not Taking My Own Blogging Advice

    by  •  • Featured, Life Skills

    Dinner in Hampstead last week.

    So at the moment I am remotely helping someone set up a food blog on the other side of the world.

    This is something I can do with my eyes closed:

    • Assess market size and competitiveness.
    • Find a USP/branding position.
    • Understand which keywords to go after.
    • Create 20 pieces of high quality content that match these keywords.
    • Find and follow the alpha and beta bloggers in your space.
    • Launch.

    Except as I am freely giving this strategy advice it occurs to me that I’m not really following it and I don’t care.

    All this premature talk of the death of blogs actually points to an unavoidable phenomena over the last couple of years: the fragmentation of your digital footprint.

    For me there is twitter as the most accurate representation of my day to day life, posterous for the amusing things the internet throws up and a home for images of my surroundings (sidebar: I fucking hate instagram).

    In addition to this there are a number of niche writing projects I am involved with that are going really well but don’t strictly belong at this URL. (This technically isn’t even my core blog.)

    So where does that leave gordonwhite.co.uk?

    Well, to be honest, this exists at the moment solely for SEO purposes. The thing about working in digital media -and soon every industry- is that if you aren’t found online then you don’t exist.

    Do you really think recruiters and potential employers DON’T Google stalk you before offering a job?

    So this blog was to be a space where I talk about what happens in my life and then ‘universalise’ it into some worthwhile tips for you in your own life.

    This is a noble goal and maybe I’ll get back to doing it some day. The gods know there is a lot of information to draw from. Here’s a taste of what happened since turning thirty a couple of months ago. Plenty of posts up in here:

    1. Went to the south of France with a bunch of gays. Odd moment where I appear to speak and understand fluent French but only when I am on a vineyard.
    2. Went to Paris for James’s birthday. French so bad I started telling people I was Australian so they wouldn’t hate me for not even attempting to speak their language. (Fortunately they like Australians because we have to travel very far to get to Paris. Naturally I didn’t correct them as to my current location.)
    3. Came within a day of being fired but then got promoted and now Google invites me to fancy secret dinners. Had tickets to Melbourne and job interviews booked and everything. Was totes gonna go HAM.
    4. Travelling all over Europe for work, including giant conferences like Dmexco.
    5. Hung out with/teased senior management at Facebook because their Dmexco keynote was like something from 2008. EARLY 2008.
    6. Got an awesome new flatmate.
    7. Having/losing an ongoing Cold War with a fucking MOUSE that lives behind my washing machine.
    8. Work from home in a poorly decorated home office. There’s a bunch of tips there.
    9. Giving a presentation at the end of the month to a large room full of European marketing directors on mobile strategy for 2012.
    10. Julie-and-Julia-ing my way through Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s latest book which is changing my life. (Buy it.)
    11. Spent £400 on a 3 michelin star dinner. (Not by choice.)
    12. Seen some frankly amazing theatre. London is killing it right now.
    13. Almost moved to Winchester. MIGHT be moving to Germany soon.
    14. Speaking of Germany: That feeling when you work for a German company as the Eurozone collapses all around you.

    But much of this stuff pours into my other digital writing projects. So when it comes time to update this blog it feels like reruns.

    What do I do instead?

    Post recipes from my rented crapshack of a kitchen. With phone photos. Which is good because obviously this is something the internet is severely short of.

    And you know what?

    I don’t care. I have about twenty meals worth of phone photos stored on the iphone because I initially promised that only one in three posts would be a recipe. I wanted the rest of it to be ‘quality’ content (ha).

    But the thing about the fragmentation of your digital footprint is that you leak all over the internet. My life lessons are elsewhere, my social commentary is elsewhere, my photos are elsewhere.

    What’s left?

    Recipes. Food. The cornerstone of my life, the yardstick by which I judge my maturity, my mental health. The amount which I am changed by my travels, the seasons and even the global economy.

    And, perhaps more than anything else, I really need somewhere to keep track of them because I seem to only be able to hold five recipes in my head at any one time. All the earlier ones get pushed out and I have complete amnesia as to whether I have cooked with smoked mackerel before.

    So yeah. It’s recipes until further notice.

    Liberally sprinkled with rants like this one.

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