Sunday, 10 July 2011

What time of day to blog?

I just read an interesting piece on Amanda Hocking's blog,  
Someone working with her agent says she is wrong to blog at three in the morning. Presumably this notion must be derived from some sort of tracking statistics, which in turn must be related to when people are awake in different parts of the world.
I don't know what the English speaking population of each time zone turns out to be, but for sure, it varies a lot. The two graphs come from a web search that is notable for the lack of any kind of ‘official’ statistics, what do they do all day at the United Nations? (Credits are on the graphs)
If like Amanda Hocking, or me for that matter, you are trying to sell ebooks to English speakers who are also on the web, then you are aiming at a subset of these graphs. We can’t assume that everyone on the web speaks English – not even all the English do.
If she blogs at 3am I am likely to read it right after breakfast when I switch on my computer or light up the iPad. If she says something interesting I will probably react, and I'll have the whole day to get on with anything she has influenced me to do, like buy another book or whatever. I may even tell my friends or blog about it.
If her publisher is only interested in the USA, this will look like wasted effort from his point of view. In the world of ebooks however, one has to ask, does this matter. I found one of the most remarkable things about putting a book on Amazon is that half my sales are in the USA. I have no idea who these people are, or what they think of the book, but their dollars count just the same as a sale over here, and I hope they enjoy it just as much as someone at the end of my road. I do wish some of them would write a review, but you can't have everything.

I suspect that this statistic about the ideal time to blog hides more than it shows. Buried in it are some assumptions about who matters in the world and what the blogger might be hoping to achieve. Me, I'm grateful if anyone reads this at all, and I don't mind what time of day they read it, or what they do with the rest of their day. Like Amanda Hocking I propose to go on blogging about what I want to, when I want to. It's nice to have something in common with someone who has apparently sold a million ebooks.

1 comment:

  1. Now look, I'm just not going to get neurotic over this. Honestly. If there's a readership for a blog - and Amanda's certainly got that - they'll read your post whatever time it's posted.