This week I’m pleased to feature Ari Herzog the founder of AriHerzog.com.
Don’t miss the last episode, what I learned from James Chartrand the founder of Men with Pens.
This is the tenth edition of the What I learned interview series.
I discover most of the blogs I read as a result of my research for the #IBCT, but Ari’s is different.
I actually started reading his blog even before I had the idea of creating the tournament last year.
I wanted to share his story because I think it’s an excellent example of how established professionals can use their blog.
Here’s some quick stats:
Domain Registered: 2002
Alexa Traffic rank: 141,439
Twitter followers: 4,161
Google+ circles: 2,398
LinkedIn Connections: 500+
Facebook followers: 305
Is the answer you would get if you asked Ari Herzog:
- Are you an entrepreneur?
- Are you a blogger?
- Are you a politician?
- Are you a founder?
- Are you a president?
- Are you a director?
- Are you an MBA?
How many people do you know that would fit this description?
Now do you see why I’ve been reading his blog?
When it comes to the internet people are most interested in what’s interesting.
I hate to say it like that but it’s true.
This is why I say established professionals and prospective bloggers can learn from Ari.
In order to create interesting content you should first BE interesting yourself.
If you focus on developing WHO you are first then you’ll have an endless well from which you can draw unique experiences that will result in great content that people will actually want to read.
It’s all about strategy.
Ok, enough of me, let’s get to the interview with Ari Herzog the founder of AriHerzog.com.
Last year marked the 10th anniversary of ARIHERZOG.COM.
Most blogs fail after only a few months why do you think people still read your site 11 years later?
It is true I bought the domain, ariherzog.com, in 2002; but I did not start blogging on it until January 2011. The domain was previously used for branding and content storage.
I began blogging in 2005 on LiveJournal and started blogging on a different dot-com domain in 2008 before shifting to its current location in 2011.
Nevertheless, it’s not about the physical location but the content on the location.
If Harley Davidson changes its name to the Bubba Cycling Corporation, people will still buy Bubba bikes because they trust the content regardless of the name behind it.
I noticed from your post On Guns that you’re not afraid to take a stance on important issues even if they’re considered unpopular or controversial.
Is it worth it to talk about these types of topics?
That post — I wrote in May 2008. My blogging at the time was about topics I don’t write about today.
Chalk it up to the evolution of a blogger, as one’s interests and pursuits change.
That said, there is nothing wrong with taking a stance on an issue.
If you write the same content as everyone else, you’re not original but an echo chamber.
Stop echoing. Be yourself. I can only write as me.
What do you think will happen to for profit and institutional education in an internet world where most of the course material is available online for free?
I am on the roster of four colleges today, teaching digital marketing courses to everyone from MBA students to business managers.
I love the free content at the Khan Academy, Coursera, and other websites; but none of that content is the content that I teach.
Also, videos and books can quickly become outdated. Human instructors, who students see on a daily or weekly basis, can provide context that videos and books cannot.
I don’t foresee any colleges closing.
They’ll evolve and adapt but that’s about it.
Finish this sentence:
When I blog I’m trying to __________ not __________.
When I blog I’m trying to be unique not be an echo chamber.
I always strive to give readers my original perspective, not a watered-down or linked version of what someone else wrote on a different blog.
Can you name something positive that your blog brought into your life that otherwise would not have happened?
Blogging has directly led to job offers, when readers enjoyed what I wrote and how I wrote it and wanted to hire me.
You can’t get more positive than that!
What is your favorite smart phone? Apple, Android, Nokia, etc.
My technologies include an iMac as my desktop, an iPad for my tablet,and an Android phone.
I have zero desire to get an iPhone.
What is your favorite social social media platform? Google+, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
If you forced me to pick one, it would be Facebook. But my tastes change every year.
I recently wrote why I’m using Facebook the most this year.
T or F: The Yankees will win the World Series this year.
You know I’m a lifelong Massachusetts resident, right?
The Yankees suck.
T or F: A Republican will be elected president of the U.S. in 2016.
I doubt it but who knows…
What I learned from Ari Herzog the founder of AriHerzog.com:
#1 – BE UNIQUE
I couldn’t agree with Ari more when he says that people come off like an echo chamber.
I’ll never understand it. I guess people are trying to say what they think others want to hear.
NEWSFLASH: People want to hear what YOU have to say. Why do you think they are visiting YOUR BLOG?
Even if you change the type of topics that you discuss people will still respect you because they remember that you kept it real with them.
You shared how you really felt about an important issue instead of just regurgitating the popular talking points.
#2 – YOU NEVER KNOW WHO’S WATCHING
It could be your next client so take every opportunity seriously.
Successful entrepreneurs like Ari know that one happy client can lead to many referrals and repeat business.
Recently I noticed a comment on Twitter from someone who said she heard about Ari’s site from my blog.
Ari’s site was nominated for the 2013 #IBCT so I guess that’s where she heard about it or maybe she’ll stop by and post a comment to explain.
The point is TONS of people are watching, like me and others so always put your best foot forward, you never know how far it could take you.
#3 – YOU ARE THE BRAND.
I know some marketers claim that you can sell bad products with good marketing but for how long?
Sure anyone can trick a person once or even a few times but what will happen long term?
Ultimately people will see through the games and demand quality.
Ari’s point about Harley Davidson motorcycles reminds me of the real history of Porsche:
Few people know that Ferdinand Porsche designed the Volkswagen beetle before he left VW to start making his own cars.
He named the cars and his new company after himself, Porsche.
His company was a success because people knew about his work from the reputation that he built with VW.
Ari’s right, ultimately people don’t trust brands as much as they do the people behind them.
This is why I recommend everyone own their own name domain like AriHerzog.com.
Even if you don’t use it for years it’s your name who else should be using it?
I want to thank Ari Herzog for taking the time to do this interview.
I know you could have went down to Boston and caught a double header of the BoSox vs The Yankees but instead you shared knowledge and I really appreciate that. Thanks a billion.
That’s it for this episode.
Don’t miss the first interview in the what I learned series featuring Steve Scott – The Six-Figure Affiliate Blogger.
You can also browse all of the latest interviews here.
Now it’s over to you.
What did you learn from Ari Herzog?
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