I had the chance to attend a pretty high class event the other week. A line of attendants waited patiently to take my orange ski-jacket, they served delicious food out of margarita glasses, and I got to hear a concert by someone I had only seen on television. It was made all the more absurd because I was invited at the last minute and was only dressed appropriately because I came from a meeting. Any other day, I would have been clad in jeans and a t-shirt. Instead, this one time, I fit the part of a young professional.
But the entire time, something was gnawing at the back of my mind. I couldn't remember what it was behind the glitz and glamor of the night.
Before I left work that day, I was a little depressed. I let myself get distracted when I was trying to read this article by Tim Ferriss and Tucker Max. Instead of reading it, I finished up work and went to that event. The thing is, that article is about something that's as true about internet marketing as it is about life: you can't fake quality. I let myself stop working just so I could go to a party and feel starstruck. If I read that article, I would have had a better handle on one of my projects.
There has been so much written about how best to use Google, Twitter, Facebook, etc. to drive traffic to your website, but at the end of the day it's all secondary. If you're not putting at least half of your efforts into producing quality content, then all your time spent marketing is just adding more noise to a seemingly bottomless pit of nonsense. That's how I feel thumbing through blogs some days, and that's how I felt at that event.
Just because I was let in the door and was dressed the part doesn't mean I was a part of that wealthy and accomplished crowd. Just because you can use "SEO" and "SMO" to get your blog in the best places doesn't mean it's worth reading. That's how I felt about my first few entries here, but I kept writing, even when I knew I wouldn't hit "Publish."
That's the important part, and not the glitz and glamor that only distracts you from the important, but harder tasks of producing and contributing.
Those are the things that don't leave you depressed and hungry for distractions. They're good enough by themselves.