Monday, December 22, 2014

Social Media Monday—The Worst Thing You can do When You Take a Day Off from Blogging

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Social Media Monday
We all know consistency is an important part of social media, especially with blogging. But our digital life isn’t the end all be all of all life. It's just one small part. Because of that, there are times when we aren’t consistent—either by choice or by circumstances. And that’s okay, life happens and we all need some time off to regroup and recharge.

This past week was just such a time for me. Friday evening our middle son got married. It was a joyous celebration, and I chose to experience the whole of it—unplugged.

So when the time comes for you to make that choice, I’d like to share the very WORST thing you can do when you take a day off from blogging.
Don’t post an apology.

Don't post an apology.
That’s it in a nutshell. But in case you’re curious, here are the reasons why.

If you’ve been following my directions, you have a way for your audience to follow your blog through email and RSS updates. The last thing you want to do is clog your audience’s inbox with false hope. And that’s what an email update that turns out to be an apology is. Here’s the scenario that you’ve unwittingly set up:
  • Your audience is expecting a post, they get an email from you.
  • They open the email and instead of the post they expect, they get an apology and a notice that there’s not going to be a post today.
  • OR even worse, they don’t click on the email. They choose to go directly to your site, and instead of the post they’re expecting, they get a short apology stating that there’s not going to be a post.

Don't waste your audience's time.
Both scenarios result in wasted time and energy for your audience. Wasted time and energy is also frustrating, especially during the holidays when time is at a premium. So don’t apologize or announce there’s not going to be a post. If you want to apologize, do it at the end of your next post.

Under the heading of don’t waste someone’s time. You also shouldn’t spend a lot of time explaining what happened to make you decide not to post. Let’s face it, life happens to all of us. Your audience gets that. Don’t waste their time on a long explanation. Just pick up where you left off.

So I’m curious. Am I the only person who gets irritated at wasted time? I appreciate the sentiment that a blogger has in wanting to apologize and warn me that there’s not going to be post. But I’m not watching any single blog that closely. If there hadn’t been an apology in my inbox I probably wouldn’t have even noticed. I wouldn’t have unsubscribed or even been irritated even if I had noticed. I get that life happens. But I trust a lot of the blogs I follow and don’t read them in email, but go directly to the blog. When I get there, expecting a post—because I got an email notification—I feel cheated and irritated. If that happens too often, I have even unsubscribed.

What about you? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

And don’t forget to join the conversation!



  1. I have to admit, Edie, I've been guilty of apologizing a time or two. That you for the heads up that it is not the thing to do!

    Have a Merry Christmas and many blessings throughout the New Year.

    1. Patti, your heart's in the right place! thanks for sharing, Blessings, E

  2. I might feel guilty for not being consistent in blogging, but I don't send out apologies for it. I do send out notices when I've blogged about something worth reading

  3. P.S. Congrats on your middle son's marriage. Friday was also my middle son's birthday.

    1. Marissa, Happy Birthday to your son! Thanks for stopping by! Blessings, E

  4. It may not always be possible but I always appreciate a heads up from the subject line so that before I even click on the blog, I can see "No post today" or the topic of the email so that I can later find it easily in my files. For example, rather than see The Write Conversation twice on my screen, I'd see the email is from The Write Conversation and the subject is: Writers, Make the Most of Your 15-Minute Conference Appointments (your Dec. 10 post). Does that make sense?

    1. Julie, That's a valid thought, although not always possible. For example, with Feedburner, we don't have the option of designating the subject line. In the new year I'm migrating all my email notification to another company, and that was the main reason why. I'll be posting about my decision to migrate and how I did it in January. Thanks for sharing! Blessings, E

  5. Edie, I feel better now and glad I read this before starting my next blog post with an apology. I've been shaming myself for not being consistent with my Monday Markers post for single moms. It's been over a month. In November my mother in law died and just over 2 weeks ago my mom died. Life happens. When I emerge again, my prayer is that my writing reflects the deeper awareness of God's grace and presence I've experienced during such a sad time, rather than just writing a post for the sake of a post. Merry Christmas and congrats on your son's marriage.

    1. Terri, I'm so sorry for you loss! I'll be praying for you and your family during this holiday season. You already have an awesome ministry and I know that you'll let these recent events deepen it even further. Merry Christmas! E