Today, because noise is everywhere, we're all surrounded by a screaming horde, an open-outcry marketplace of ideas where the race to be heard appears to be the only race that matters.
The rant isn't over. Just when I thought nothing further could be said on the topic, Seth Godin's pithy post of daily thoughts slid into my in-box. How timely that was.
Granted, what he was referring to is the topic of marketing—in its current state, more noise tossed into an already noisy environment or, as he put it, "just a troop of gorillas, all arguing over the last remaining banana."
What made his post timely for me had nothing to do with marketing per se, of course. I'm not a marketer. But I am a communicator for whom an audience of zero would be a painful kiss of death.
Like most family history bloggers, I like to think what I am doing will—for someone at some time—eventually make a difference. I'm finding myself a blogger for whom the continual thrumming mantra of the demise of blogging is depressing. Whether there is an audience or not, I still have much to say. To think that audience has disappeared, though, could induce a withering away of the verve required to say what needs to be said.
So encouraging, then, to see Seth Godin's response. His advice, whether in the marketing dilemma he described or in facing the current flux in the genea-blogging world:
To stick to the work, to the smallest possible audience, to building something worth talking about.
In Seth Godin's viewpoint, what actually works in a noisy environment isn't more noise. It's getting that one person to listen, take notice, and benefit from what was heard—and then pass it along. A word fitly spoken can evidently go a long way in building a solid blogging reputation, if it's useful enough to be commented upon—"the smallest possible audience, to build something worth talking about."