7 trends impacting every blogger at #mnblogcon

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to speak at the sixth annual Minnesota Blogger Conference–an event I helped start with Missy Berggren years ago. Nowadays, Jen Jamar and Mykl Roventine run it, and they are doing a WONDERFUL job. After my limited experience at the event on Saturday, I just can’t say enough good things about what they’ve done with that event.

But, I digress.

I talked about trends impacting bloggers. Specifically, 7 trends impacting almost every blogger at #mnblogcon.

MN Blog Con 2015

In case you missed it, here’s a sneak peek–along with the deck at the tail end.

#1: Avoid the “content shock”

Credit to Mark Schaefer for the term. I talked about how bloggers need to get back to basics, and providing their unique perspective around whatever topic they’re writing about. So many people are using listicles–and I highlighted that with a screen shot of my Feedly account (take a peek below). My argument: When everyone is zigging–try zagging. And get back to why you started blogging–because you had something to say.


#2: RSS=dead. E-newsletters=alive and well.

RSS never really took off like bloggers hoped it would. But, now, I think we can all safely say it is officially over. And, instead of just adding the standard “subscribe to this blog via email” widget to your blog, I argue you should consider starting an e-newsletter. See the deck for a few solid reasons why.

#3: Content syndication=new readers!

Everyone wants new readers, right? But acquiring them is usually a different story. Content syndication is one of those strategies that I’ve felt has always flown under the radar. LinkedIn Publishing, re-posting to Medium and finding industry sties who will run your posts–these are all great ways to re-purpose your posts to reach new audiences.

#4: The rise of DIY tools

The big discussion here–do you use DIY tools and potentially take a hit on the look and feel of your blog (but, not pay extra for help), or do you enlist the help of a professional designer to create a blog, and visuals, that appear a bit more polished? That’s the discussion right now–I fear we may be leaning too far toward the DIY side right now.

#5: Social sharing ain’t what it used to be

Here’s the part where I told everyone to take social counters off their blogs. After all, weren’t they always just an ego-trip anyway? As social behaviors have changed, dark social continues to grow, and more people spend more time on chat apps, social sharing is losing steam. Take a peek at some of the popular blogs in your industry–chances are they may have already taken down their social share buttons.

#6: Blogs are starting to look a lot less like, well, blogs.

Remember what blogs looked like in 2008? I do. They looked like a Blogger blog. Remember Blogger? LOL. Nowadays, blogs are starting to look like this blog (Jungles in Paris, a popular travel blog).

Blog Design 1

Blogs are starting to look more like the new simplified web. Big visuals. Headlines. Minimal navigation. That’s where blogs are heading from a design POV.

#7: The blog comment may officially be dead.

Copyblogger was way ahead of the curve when the popular blog killed its comments a couple years ago. I bet we’ll see many more kill their blog comment sections, too, in the months ahead. You watch.


Want the full deck? Take a peek.


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One comment on “7 trends impacting every blogger at #mnblogcon

  1. Danny Brown says:

    Good stuff, mate, and looked like a solid presentation.

    The listicles male me laugh, and your image highlights the very thing wrong with them – if you’re skimming headlines, and you’re faced with a barrage of numbers, where’s the incentive to read?

    “Oh no, so if I read each of these posts I’m going to have to remember 116 things?” Ain’t nobody got time for that!

    It’s not so much “content shock” as it is shocking content. New web users are coming online every day, so there will always be readers for new blogs. It’s the lazy writers of the web, and the blogs that talk about how much content there is by adding extra content talking about too much content, that we need to avoid and demote down the way to make way for the informative stuff.

    Also, I disagree completely about the comments going away trend, but that’s a whole bigger discussion. 🙂

    Cheers (and thanks for including my Balls post!)