People Really Do Read What You Write

Over the past couple of weeks I have been sharing a few observations about my recent marriage. And it has garnered more responses, likes, shares, and support than I would have ever expected. I have learned people really do read what I write. If you are a writer, too, maybe you can relate. 

I’ve been writing and video-blogging online in one form, or several, for over 10 years. I’m used to average rates of opens and clicks. No marketing firm would lust after my small subscriber lists (not that I would ever share them). My expectations for readership/viewership really haven’t been that high.  

Mostly I try to share a little story, or a helpful tip from an outside source. Frequently I convey a painful lesson, hoping to save others the trouble. My mother once told me, “Never write down anything you wouldn’t want published in the newspaper.” So I haven’t shared all the painful lessons; just the ones fit to (virtually) print.  

Because I wasn’t getting a ton of feedback, I assumed a ton of people weren’t reading. But I guess you were. 

When it came to posting about my marriage, I didn’t expect any more than the typical level of reaction. But I have been overwhelmed by your responses. Thank you, thank you, thank you.  

First the congratulations poured in when I made the announcement with the post about big decisions. Even if you only took a few seconds to “like” or write a few words, it touched me. Then when I posted about going for simplicity in the ceremony and rings, reader after reader shared their own similar story. It’s been heartwarming and humbling to receive so many well-wishes and me-too’s (the good kind). 

So if you find yourself disheartened by putting part of your soul out there online, only to be met with crickets, take heart. Your audience is there: they’re just busy, or preoccupied, or moving on to the next post. It doesn’t mean they didn’t read yours, and it doesn’t mean they don’t care. And there are plenty more who are dying for your connection but just haven’t found you yet. 

Although I’ve never received a great quantity of reader responses in the past, nearly all of them were high quality. It seems from week to week and month to month, someone out there connected on a deeper level with my message-of-the-moment. Perhaps that’s what kept you coming back. 

It’s those connections with you, virtually, that keep me coming back, offering what I have to share. Thanks for reading what I write. ​

Holly Donaldson

Holly P. Donaldson, CFP® writes and consults on the psychology of money. Her fee-only, product-free financial planning practice focuses on increasing financial self-efficacy for those seeking a financial navigator to help them make good decisions. She is the author of The Mindful Money Mentality: How to Find Balance in Your Financial Future (Porchview Publishing, 2013) and publisher of the award-winning monthly e-letter, "The View From the Porch." With a fully virtual practice in Seminole, Florida, she primarily serves clients located in the Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater areas. Holly will also work with clients who are a good fit located elsewhere in the United States.

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