Performancing Metrics

Lessons From “Planet Mars” – Do Men Make Better Bloggers?

It happened quite by accident.
I kid you not.
It was an average week where I was posting content to my personal blog, when I made a discovery.
I was in the process of doing a review type post where I was sharing my favorite blogs on blogging, and discovered that most of them were written by men!

There must have been some mistake, I thought.
Everybody knows that women are better communicators, right?
Remember the book by John Gray, “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”?

So, like Santa Claus, I made my list and I checked it twice.

For every chick blog that I enjoyed there were 3 men’s. Hmm?
What did that say?

I went even further to review the top dogs in terms of earnings. Who dominated? The men. Don’t believe my little informal “study” on gender and blogging?
Think to yourself—who are the bloggers that you study most to enhance your success. Are there more men than women?
You decide.

What’s my point?
Rather than pout, I think that us “chick bloggers” (as one of my blogging buddies describes us) should poise ourselves to learn more from the fellas.

Of course I don’t want to appear sexist, but success is success.
Don’t shoot the messenger!

Here are four fabulous tips I’ve learned by studying the opposite sex. Don’t be bitter, be better.

1. Men mean business—No matter what the topic, they tend to be more action and results oriented in their blog posts. They often have “calls to action” or tell us what we should be doing in no uncertain terms.
2. Men often appeal to our desire to achieve success, rather than connect on an emotional basis. They don’t typically care about “hurting other’s feelings.” And I must admit sometimes that we do. Take for instance a post I wrote on readers not making comments. I debated back and forth before posting it, because I didn’t want to offend. Guess what? It ended up being one of my most popular posts.
3. Men are more original. They dismiss fads, or popularity, or conformity. Many do their own thing, regardless as to the consequences.
4. Men aren’t afraid to court controversy. They often dismiss “protocol” for principle. Franky Branckaute of Blogging Pro is a good example.  :-)

So, that’s my take on today’s topic. But women, take heart. Although we may not rule the “blog world”, we still have the “real power” in relationships!
Rock on!

Your turn. Do you agree or disagree with my findings? Have you noticed any gender related differences in women and men bloggers? Do tell.

Categories: Blogging Tips, Blogging: How To
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Comments

  1. Amy ) says: 5/3/2010

    Jen:

    Great topic/question! Maybe YOU just like men more. :0) (kidding!).

    Actually, going back to that whole Mars v. Venus thing, I think men are more focused on measuring themselves against others — as in ‘I’m better than him, or he’s better than me’. So, they would likely get a head start when blogging for popularity or money by tweeting ‘look at me’ type tweets or just being more comfortable, in general, drawing attention to themselves. Women, on the other hand, focus first on collecting followers or readers by trying to get a lot of people to ‘like’ them. It’s more of a community building kind of thing – you follow me I’ll follow you.

    A male blogger might sound more like ‘Look at my blog. It’s good. You’ll want to check it out’.
    A woman would say… ‘hey, I saw your blog, it’s really good. (and, maybe if she was feeling really aggressive she might add…). I write about a lot of similar stuff.’ …in hopes that there would be some return love.

    One of the great ‘side effects’ of blogging may be that it affords women the opportunity to say ‘hey look at me!’ …for what they think…not how they look.

    I think it will be interesting to look at this conversation down the road and see if culture or race are influencing factors as well!

    Thanks as always.

    Amy

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/3/2010

      Amy,

      You figured me out; I do like men more…”let me count the ways”! :-)
      Great observations and examples on your part–women tend to be more community oriented in their efforts–which I totally dig. And as a result, have “connected” with some really smart, savvy, diva writers like yourself. Thanks for your thoughts today.

      Reply

    • Franky Branckaute ) says: 5/3/2010

      Amy, I don’t think that men are more competitive than women, but a competitive man usually is more focused and will make less ‘side steps’ when trying to reach their target, goal. On the risk of sounding sexist, I think it has to do with men looking for less validation while on the road to their target. Once they achieve ‘popularity’, they aren’t afraid either to play the achieved popularity, play it as in ‘calling themselves influencers’.

      All in all though, I have seen much more creative and less ‘protocol’ writing from women. Women who are driven and targeted generally are much more successful… if they can set aside the gene Y and even on the bad days stay focused. Forget emotion, stay focused and driven, there’s no place for bad days.
      Sadly, as a woman you’ll be judged more on how you write on those ‘bad days’ than during the rest of the month. Stand out during these, don’t look for confirmation on the road to success just be successful. Be like Robyn, if you blog since only 3 months and write content like this you’ll be a star very soon. Stay focused, there’s only one thing you should look at: success. Don’t get sidetracked, don’t look too much at what others do, be driven and don’t let anything get in your way.

      Many great bloggers are women and I do think that their are more successful female bloggers than there are successful women in business. Even in the ‘how to blog’ scene, I can think of many popular female writers.

      Reply

  2. Franky Branckaute ) says: 5/3/2010

    What have I done to be involved, mentioned here?

    Joking aside, the story of “James Chartrand” is a great one as well in this topic.

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/3/2010

      Franky,

      I’m familiar with the story. Thanks for highlighting it and sharing it.

      Reply

  3. Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/3/2010

    I think it’s important to add to the conversation that both sexes have their strengths.
    For example, as a woman I can be a successful blogger and engage people, but relationships are important to me as well. If it were not for our “fans, friends and followers” how successful would any of us be? And what would be the point? We’d just as soon be very efficient “robots”. To quote a popular expression, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

    Reply

    • Franky Branckaute ) says: 5/3/2010

      I kind of ‘hate’ this conversation as it has all things required to go down as a battle of the sexes. I myself could not care less about anyone’s gender when it comes to publishing online or any job. I guess being a Cylon makes things easier. :D

      Reply

  4. Lou Belcher ) says: 5/3/2010

    Great topic. I hadn’t thought much about it before, but you’re right — many of the bigees in this field are men. I’ll have to do some thinking about this. It always seemed that the best writers were women as I was studying, but now I’m wondering about the ratio of men to women in literature as well. So, is it the writing or is it the orientation to conquering the business aspect of blogging that makes the difference?

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/4/2010

      Thanks for your thoughts, Lou.
      You pose some interesting points to ponder. I think literature might be a little different, though I don’t have statistics to support my theory, I believe women are more successful. A few names that come to mind would be J.K. Rowling, Terry McMillan, Danielle Steele, Iyanla Vanzant, etc.

      I think that it’s more the orientation to conquer the business aspects of blogging that makes the difference.

      Reply

  5. Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/3/2010

    Oh yeah,

    I do agree. Robyn is a great blogger and groovy-all-around guy. :-)

    Reply

  6. Tia - BizChickBlogs ) says: 5/3/2010

    Ha! Glad you broached this subject as I have “almost” done it many times. Another chick blogger mistake!

    I do think there is a commonality to successful male bloggers and the few women who are on par with them in terms of readership. It’s really tough to nail down. I’m sure somewhere, some sociology student is studying blogger habits and is probably putting men and women in different groups.

    You’ve done a great job of highlighting some differences; they have not been so clear cut to me. All I know is that if a chick wants to be successful she’s got to blog like a man. lol How to do that? I guess that’s for the next post! :)

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/3/2010

      Thanks, Tia,

      I think that as mature adults we can look at the different ideas, styles and strategies and learn how to improve as a community, and not become divisive in our differences. I love learning from the fellas, which is not to say that we females are not “fierce” in our own way too!

      I’ll leave the next post on blogging gender differences to you.:-) Thanks for your intelligent input today.

      Reply

  7. Franky Branckaute ) says: 5/3/2010

    Tia, I will answer your question. As a post in the comments.

    All I know is that if a chick wants to be successful she’s got to blog like a man. lol How to do that? I guess that’s for the next post!

    It’s not about gender, it’s about mentality. Set out to be a winner, aim high. Set out to inspire, it’s more fun to lecture than to be lectured. Aim to score with every post, but know that the conversion rate will be low if you post every day. Even in basketball only one out of several hits target. Some are good enough to publish only once or twice monthly.

    Follow thought leaders (provokers?) and participate but cut out the noise, don’t participate too long. Community is important but also time consuming. Do you think top probloggers have time to follow every discussion, read every post? No, instead they are working at the next post already or playing with data they could at some point turn into new, awesome content. The pros don’t need to follow what the other does, they will get there by analysing ‘what does work’ alone, I know several top bloggers who don’t read blogs. (Of course they all hang out in IM and occasionally share the odd link)

    The main question though: how do you define success? Numbers, traffic, subscribers, comments, active community, influence or a mix of all these? Or is it when you do something and without any of the previous ‘success’, you see other people follow your lead?

    Reply

    • Tia - BizChickBlogs ) says: 5/3/2010

      Hey Frank! Great thoughts. I guess I was being a bit facetious there. I was going with Jennifer’s thought in the post: it seems many or even most of the top bloggers are, in fact, men. Then again, that’s in the “blogging” industry, for lack of a better term.

      Fashion bloggers, behavioral therapy or relationship bloggers may have a totally different viewpoint. Maybe it depends on what we are all talking about?

      Reply

      • Franky Branckaute ) says: 5/4/2010

        Tia, spot on. It all depends on the niche. I would be tempted to say that it’s almost 50-50. About blogging, Marketing, Politics and Tech are mainly dominated by men but especially in tech women have started putting their stamp on things and top multi-authored blogs all have at least one female blogger and more so even when looking at a niche such as ‘geek’ and sci-fi, women are starting to be more and more present. But I will say that these niches traditionally have been dominated by the male species, the internet is a reflexion of ‘real life’ after all now it’s as huge as it is.

        If we look at other niches, there is lots of content out there, also written by women, and popular content. You mentioned some niches, there’s also the parenting and ‘for kids’ niche, which is mainly dominated by women and even when it comes to ‘writing’ you’ll see many women running top blogs. Some of the earliest professional bloggers indeed were women.

        But the reason why there’s more men is historically. Five to seven years ago the internet was mainly male, still very ‘tech savvy’, closed almost. Many of these men who now have very popular blogs, have managed to carve out their niche years ago already, just like Dooce did, but many also were in Tech. Even today, especially among blogs, tech still dominates (Technorati).

        Reply

      • Franky Branckaute ) says: 5/4/2010

        And an element I forgot: what I do see more with men though are bloggers who will hit out 15-25 posts/day. I know fewer women who do this. Otherwise I think it’s almost equal and that’s how it should be.

        Reply

  8. Amit Banerjee says: 5/3/2010

    There are more “Men” blogs than “Women” blogs. That’s why the percentage of successful “Men” blogs are higher. I would like to see a ratio of female bloggers vs Men bloggers and then compare them ..hm

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/3/2010

      Amit,

      Interesting observation…thanks for sharing your perspective.

      Reply

  9. Baklava says: 5/4/2010

    Jennifer Brown Banks;
    Thanks for you sharing with us;

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/4/2010

      Baklava,

      You are welcome. Thanks for your time.

      Reply

  10. Marcie Hill ) says: 5/4/2010

    All of the blogs I follow about blogging are written by men. They are the most successful and they all support each other in sharing news and products to their readers. I also find they market their blogs heavily with their calls to action. And, many of them have several mean to stay in their audiences faces – frequent newsletters, free offers, and email updates.

    On a more official note, In the 2009 State of the Blogosphere report by Technorati, two-thirds of bloggers are men.

    Reply

    • Jennifer Brown Banks ) says: 5/4/2010

      Great insights and information, Marcie. Thanks for sharing it here.

      Reply