I’ve heard a quote attributed to Jeff Bezos of Amazon that bears repeating, even if it isn’t true. He was reputed to have asked, “Who is the best prospect for a Mexican cookbook? Someone who just bought a Mexican cookbook.”
I guess the corollary in the blogosphere is that the sure way to get comments and discussion on a blog post is to post about blogging, because nobody comments on a blog post more than a blogger. (That, and coffee, for some reason).
A few interesting facts about blogging have struck me in the past two weeks. Two people whose relationship with me pre-date the internet have found me through my blog. I was pointed to a deep space link dating from the early ’90’s that picked up a reference from the mid-80’s on a Tokyo PC User Group bulletin board with the following:
“Tim and John spoke great Japanese as they grew up there, and another guy had worked with John in the chip deal but never went on his own, so he didn’t score big like John did. His name was Steve Denny, and he was the most educated of all of us, and spoke really good Japanese from studying while he attended one of the Japanese universities. The four of us would go out on Friday as a regular event … we’d start off at a club that had happy hour in Roppongi, drinks were only 150 yen from 6:30-8:00 on Friday, then we would usually end up eating dinner at Victoria Station for a nice slab of prime rib and more drinks, and then we’d end up at Trader Vic’s for the watermelon drink with straws hanging out of it, and the bartender would just dump alcohol in that watermelon shell… We would always tell Victoria Station it was one of our birthdays, and we would always tell them it was “Doctor Alan’s birthday”, or “Doctor John’s birthday”, “Doctor Tim’s birthday”, “Doctor Steve’s birthday”, etc… Of course they knew it wasn’t our birthday every week, but we spent so much money there, they would get all the waiters and waitresses over to sing it to us anyway.”
This log entry has been out there for a few decades, unbeknownst to me, and it’s all true. I still have the somewhat morally dubious habit of getting waitresses to sing Happy Birthday to unwitting friends at the table, for some reason.
Secondly, I got hired the other day to run marketing for a very interesting company partly because of this blog. People introduced themselves with, “I read your blog!”. I was asked in the interviewing process for a sample of my writing. I pointed them to my URL and to The Daily Fix. My new boss has hard copies of my two Squidoo lenses on positioning and branding.
Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, I’ve also been able to crystalize my thinking from this blog. I’ve used this forum to fire test a few ideas, organize the beginning, middle and end of concepts that weren’t necessarily solid to me at first but took stronger physical form once committed to paper (so to speak). I’ve found that writing for an audience is a more provocative excercise than quietly jotting down personal notes for no one in particular.
As if you needed more reasons. Keep writing.
Copyright (c) 2007 Stephen Denny
PS: And thanks to Dr. Alan Duboff for not only writing the above melifluous prose praising my not-really-as-good-as-all-that Japanese from back in the day, but for touching base a few decades later, as well.
Thanks for the inspiring story. I enjoy your writings on positioning and strategy. I’m a young chap hoping to sharpen my senses in marketing through creative writing and learning from others. Although fairly new to this, I’m confident the discipline to participate in this community will push me forward in unique directions.
Congratulations on the new position.
Congratulations on your new job, Steve. I was brave and put my URL on my resume. The thing is blogging changes your brain — and it changes you. So you would want to work with a team that gets that.
In today’s post, I give everyone an A. We must all be on the same wavelength. There are workplaces where they wish they were.
I’ve been blogging since last September. On the whole, it has energized my thinking and writing (similar to you), although I sometimes get tired of it (probably similar to you, as well).
Anyway, it’s allowed me to connect with a younger audience (20-35), many of whom are familiar with the “Creative Whack Pack” but not the book that made it all possible, “A Whack on the Side of the Head.” Cut to the chase: blogging and a new market have given me the impetus to do a 25th Anniversary Edition of “Whack” which Warner Books will publish Spring, 2008. I doubt I would have done it had I not been energized by my recent blogging experience.
That’s my story.