I started writing a blog almost 8 years ago, maybe more. The first one was on Blogger and that was, by far, the most rewarding blogging experience of my entire blogging “life”. Blogger was basic, easy to use, blogging was just starting, we had less of this “I blog professionally” shit and people had more options to discover other people they thought worthy of reading.
Somehow I got popular so people suggested I start blogging “professionally” which meant that I was to get my own name-domain (which I still own and it’s giving me a constant headache, find it here www.bogdanabutnar.ro), switch from blogging in English and move to Wordpress where I could get better exposure in Google and have more control over the design and “accessories”. I’d say there were a couple of good years doing that but eventually managing a self-hosted Wordpress blog became a huge pain in the butt. I was clearly not going to be a professional blogger. My profession is digital marketing and, as it happens, blogging is a small part of that, but I was not going to make money from writing on my blog. So the design, constant updates, SEO and Cache and whatnot plugins started to really bug me. I was lucky to have my blog hosted by a dear friend but even the minimal server updates sometimes left my Wordpress blog crippled because of lack of constant care.
I also did not want to write so that people could find me in Google. I find that to be a Quixotic attempt when you are hell-bent on writing in English. I also find that it tends to skew your writing towards what is searched for versus what you care about. I wanted to write so that people who thought like me could read what I cared about. I wanted to have a small community not “traffic”.
Finally, after reading this post (http://bbh-labs.com/bbhpublab/)on the BBH Labs blog it dawned on me: they were right, I am a digital professional and not interested in making money from writing. Why was I not experimenting with other forms of publishing? Why did I cling to that burdensome wordpress blog? Simple answer is that I believe personal branding is connected to owning your personal brand so having my name on top of the blog was important. But since I am now living in a different country and unsure of what the future holds for me, who was I building the personal brand for, really?
I considered only a couple of options when deciding to start experimenting with other forms of publishing. I hold a deep and undying contempt for Facebook (maybe from my days as a Googler). I have seen so much useful thinking get buried deep inside an algorithm which is clearly NOT built to showcase and surface content but interactions that I never even thought I could start publishing using their Notes function. I already feel like everything I place there is forever lost. I was considering Tumblr because of their simple design, great interface and growing popularity but their skew towards images is such that it makes it inaccessible to me. I thought of LinkedIn but the medium strikes me as simply to self promotional and uptight.
I came to Medium. I loved the simplicity and cleanliness. I am going to give it a try.
I plan to do a bit of writing here. I will start with what I used to do in my blog every end of year, resolutions. They’re useful for me and may be useful for other people. I will try to understand how to streamline my personal blog even further and maybe turn it into something I can call home again.
This may not be permanent but it’s the best for right now.