Excuse Posts – How to Let Your Blog Go #6

Another sign a blogger is letting his blog go is the Excuse Post. You know the one – “Sorry I haven’t posted for a while. My dog had diarrhea /my kids had diarrhea /I’ve had a terrible case of diarrhea.” (For some reason bloggers think they have to spill all the gory details to make their excuse posts sound more believable.)

Actually, it’s the repeated use of the excuse post that signals a blog might be headed for the trash heap. Sometimes things do happen that pull you away from your blog for an extended period of time, and that’s understandable.

It’s when those excuse posts are the only thing being posted… and there are sometimes weeks between posts. That’s when it becomes apparent that the blogger is letting his blog go.

When An Excuse Post Is Appropriate

There are two times you can get away with an excuse post:

  1. If you’ve been absent from your blog because you were researching an extensive blog post. For example, maybe you need to spend a week learning how to use a new software program so you can write it up for your readers.
  2. If you just briefly touch on your excuse and then get on with your post, as in, “Sorry I’ve been gone a few days. I hope you found plenty to read in the archives while I was gone. Now, let’s get back to business.

Never reveal nasty details, like “I had to fly to Reno for a divorce” or “Everybody in my house had explosive diarrhea.” Your regular readers might be sympathetic and that’s nice, we all like to feel loved. But you have to remember that that post might be the first post a new reader lands on. Is that really how you want to make your first impression?

Why Excuse Posts Are Bad For Your Blog

Aside from the fact that you only get one chance to make a good first impression, there are three reasons you should avoid using excuse posts:

  1. Nobody likes to be reminded of their own problems: Your readers come to your blog for information, not a guilt trip or a reminder of how unfair life can be.
  2. You lose credibility: Too many excuse posts and you start looking like you just don’t care, like there’s something in your life that’s more important than your readers. Especially if there’s nothing but silence in between.
  3. There are plenty of fish in the sea: There are dozens of blogs in every niche. Your readers can easily find a reliable blogger who posts frequently and regularly, and who’s concerned about their needs.

How To Avoid The Need For An Excuse

Emergencies happen. Good things happen to take you away from your blog, too. But no matter why you’re away from your blog for a while, it’s always best to avoid those excuse posts. Here are some things you can do:

  1. Revisit your reason for blogging: Perhaps your goals have changed and it’s time to make some changes on your blog.
  2. Revisit your niche: Maybe you’re neglecting your blog because you’re tired of your topic.
  3. Plan ahead: Start writing a few extra evergreen blog posts every week and put them in an emergency file. That way you’ll always have content to post no matter what happens.
  4. Line up guest bloggers: Even if you’re not using guest bloggers now, start looking around for two or three people who can provide content while you’re gone.
Sté Kerwer
Article written by Sté Kerwer (1993 Posts)
Bonjour from a french guy. My name is Sté Kerwer and Dukeo is my blog. I do most of the heavy lifting in here but from time to time, you may see some guest posts. To receive updates from Dukeo, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.
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3 Comments (Add one)

  1. Bethany Lee

    Haha! I know exactly what you are talking about on these excuse posts! I stopped writing those in the first six months of blogging. Now, I’m pretty well down to a consistent post per week, so I don’t need to write them anymore. So that’s a good way to avoid the excuse blog post: just blog. Consistently. No excuses. :-)

  2. colbymarshall
    colbymarshall

    You’re absolutely right- my old blog before I started “back” to blogging recently ended in 2010 right after several of these types of posts. It’s definitely bad sign.

  3. Holly
    Holly

    Who needs an excuse? Only the blogger with a big ego who doesn’t realize that there are plenty of other blogs out there to take up the momentary slack. I don’t apologize for my “days off.”

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