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Quality Versus Quantity

When I started this blog back in 2009, I wanted to vent about media relations. At the time, PR people were taking a lot of heat for spamming bloggers. It seemed like every day there was some story about a PR person that had pissed off a blogger. Most of the attacks were probably justified, though the result of years of built up tension in most cases. As I started blogging, I didn’t think it would stick. When I launched my personal blog in 2007, I wrote two posts, then deleted them. I’d write them again, then I deleted them. I ultimately decided blogging wasn’t for me. I eventually came around.

With Journalistics, it was different. In 2009, social media was starting to take off. I had 12 years of PR experience under my belt – and I knew a thing or two about SEO. I never thought of myself as an expert, but as I started to share my suggestions, a lot of great feedback started coming in. I was actually helping people. Some people said my blog had become their favorite (but that’s what mom’s are supposed to say, right?).

If you had told me that hundreds of thousands of people would read my posts, I wouldn’t have believed you. But that’s what happened. Then the posts started being mentioned by people I respected in the industry. And then I’d have people come up to me at conferences and say, “I read your blog. I love it.” I always thought they had me confused for a similar-sounding blog.

After three years of building my audience, making tons of friends, getting posts regularly picked up in trade outlets, being listed on Alltop for “journalism” and “PR” and even breaking the Top 100 on the AdAge Power 150 at one point, things were going pretty good. So what did I do next? I stopped blogging. Call it writer’s block. Call it dealing with stress and other personal stuff. Call it whatever you want, but they’d all be excuses.

I haven’t blogged since December. I have no idea how that happened. Granted, I am a big believer in quality over quantity, but at some point that argument loses its weight. You know, like when you don’t post in three months. If you’re reading this blog, it’s a miracle. I’ve given you no reason to check back here lately – and there’s no shortage of PR and journalism blogs out there.

I may not be listed on the AdAge 150 anymore. And it looks like Alltop took me off their lists of journalism and PR blogs. So that’s the bad news… But I don’t lose as much sleep over that as I would if you stopped reading. Let’s make a deal. If you keep reading, I’ll never let another month go by without posting something decent. Over the past three years, I’ve averaged six posts a month. I think that’s the write balance for one moonlighting blogger.

The Good News?

The good news is, facing the choice of shutting down the blog or cranking things back up, I opt for the latter. Why? One word… you. I’m so grateful for everyone that reads this blog. I don’t write for money (I barely cover hosting). I write to help students and young professionals. I write to stimulate meaningful dialogue with my peers (and experts that know a lot more about this stuff than I do). And I write because its fun and I love it. I can’t believe I’ve let this much time go by – but it’s not like I haven’t been thinking about things I want to write about, or ways to improve the blog.

If you were thinking of unsubscribing or taking me off your blog roll, hold your horses. I’ve got a lot of good things up my sleeve. Here are some of the content categories you can expect moving forward. Some you’ll recognize, some are new, and some will remain a surprise.

  • “How Tos” for media and PR pros – not just limited to PR – historically, you’ve asked for these posts the most – from how to write a boilerplate or how to work a room, you’ve told me these posts help (help me help you with more ideas)
  • “Tips and Tricks” to help you work smarter/faster
  • Guides and resources for PR and journalism – there are some great posts from the past that need to be updated (like that infamous post on ‘best’ J-schools)
  • Analysis and opinion on current industry issues and news stories – there’s a couple of things I need to chime in on
  • Career-related advice for finding work (or making more moola working for somebody or yourself)
  • Interviews with people doing cool work in journalism and PR – people you wouldn’t get to talk to everyday
  • Topics you want to know about (comment on this post and I’ll consider your ideas)
  • Guest blogs from really smart people (as a side note – I’ve dropped the ball with some guest blogs in the past; my standards will be much higher moving forward)
  • Reports from events I attend nationally – or good scoops on regional happenings in Atlanta
  • Updates on our projects outside of Journalistics – because I know some of you care about that stuff
  • Stuff you won’t see on every other PR blog out there (like the truth on how to get covered in certain pubs – or tough love for things like press release writing)

For you loyal readers that have resisted the temptation to unsubscribe from the feed, thank you. Let’s just look at this time as my sabbatical. It was time to recharge and get fresh ideas. Please let me know what you’d like to see here. And, if you’re still reading and attending SXSW this year, let me know. I’ll be there Friday to Monday and would love to connect with some of our readers. Cheers!

(Image Credit: Quality Ice Cream Mural by KB35 / Flickr)

About Jeremy Porter

Jeremy Porter is co-founder and editor of Journalistics, a lively blog about public relations and journalism topics.

  • Melanie Spink

    Hi.
    I would love to say I’m a loyal follower of your blog but I have to admit that I only happened upon it earlier today. The reason being that for my first assignment for one of my first year Media subjects was to analyse an item of media, with Journalistics being one of the options given to us by our tutor. The tutor outlining that an important section of the criteria was to follow your work for the coming month. I love what you have to say and it is very encouraging to me as a hopeful upcoming journalist. I can’t wait to continue reading your work in the future, particularly the next few weeks. Anyhow my reason for posting is therefore to encourage you in return to continue blogging – providing me as an inexperienced, rather nervous student with more insight into the challenging world of media.

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      Melanie – thanks for taking the time to leave me this comment. See? This is exactly what I’m talking about… now I need to give you some good stuff to read this month. Let me know of any hot topics you’re covering in your classes. Thanks!

  • john bagnall

    Proof that Google Reader works miracles? Welcome back.

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      I love Google Reader – and a bunch of other Google products. Well, I did before they changed the way all their account settings worked and locked me out of Feedburner… but that has nothing to do with this comment. Thanks for reading John.

  • http://prinpink.wordpress.com Krista

    I too was pleasantly surprised this morning when your post popped up in my Google Reader. I agree, it’s hard to keep up the crazy train of blogging when you work and have a life in real life. But I’m glad to hear you’re not giving up the ship– looking forward to reading your new posts :)

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      I grew up growing plants in the family business – a plant nursery in CT. What do plants and blogs have in common? You have to take care of them everyday, or they die. My blog has been that pot of dirt in the corner of the room for months – the one with the brown leaves. It’s been a rose garden in full bloom at one point in time – I’ll get it back there. Thanks for reading!

  • http://soloprpro.com/ Kellye Crane

    Go Jeremy go! Glad to see you gearing back up, my friend. We’ve missed you.

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      KC – thanks for the note. Looks like I had moderation on for some reason. I hope things are going well for you. I’m back and refreshed. I’m sure I’ll be super-charged after SXSW this weekend. Send your post ideas my way!

    • http://www.twitter.com/tressalynne Tressa Robbins

      Same here, Jeremy. I’m so far behind on my Google Reader that I didn’t really notice but glad you’re back. :)

  • Clara Persand

    Nice to have you back. I find most articles helpful and insightful. Hope it keeps getting better and better.

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      It just got better by one comment. Thanks. What topics are you most interested in right now Clara?

      • Clara Persand

        I am interested in media relations, social media and new ways to work with journalists.

  • Dave

    Glad to have you back blogging again. I teach PR and have frequently used your posts in class. My students and I will look forward to all of the new content.

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      Dave – where do you teach? Ask your students what topics they want to hear about – I want to know what you guys are talking about in your classes. I’d also be open to picking a topic and having some objective competition – best post gets published on the blog… or something like that. Brainstorm ideas with your students and email me at jporter AT journalistics DOT com. Seriously, when readers comment, I get so excited to write. Keep ‘em coming.

  • Melanie Spink

    Thanks also for your response. I think as first year students coming into examining the media industry on a broad bases our main focus at the moment is asking, “what does make a story news worthy?” and “how should we approach Journalism and working in the media in a world that is so focused on social media?” Any response to either of these questions would be excellent :)

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      Hey there mind reader… no, seriously – I have a draft going on the first one (what makes a story newsworthy). Well, with my own Journalistics spin of course. I think there’s potential on the second on too. Thanks for the suggestions.

  • http://identitypr.com/blog/ Nikki Little

    Glad you’re planning to stick with blogging! I’m a firm believer in quality over quantity, too. I’m slowly starting to remove the blogs from my Reader that aim for the opposite. Sure, they’ll have a gem every so often, but it’s not worth my time to sift through 20 posts to find one that’s valuable.

    Looking forward to the new content you have planned. Sorry we didn’t get the chance to meet the past two years at SXSW. Maybe next year. :)

  • http://www.thesportsprblog.com Katrina Younce

    Welcome back, Jeremy! You were definitely missed and I look forward to reading new posts from you. Journalistics is a staple on my google reader and I appreciate your outlook on quality vs. quantity.

    • http://blog.journalistics.com Jeremy Porter

      Thanks for the note Katrina. I appreciate the encouragement and am happy you’re still reading.