When you measure an activity, you can improve it. Computers make it easy to optimize just about every portion of your life.
Surely, you can optimize a website or a blog for traffic. You can optimize ads to make them yield more results.
And then, at some point, you realize you're spending your best energy on optimization, not on creation.
That's one reason I resist the temptation to optimize this blog for traffic and yield. I'd rather force myself to improve it by having the guts to write better posts instead.
Lawyers entering the blawgosphere want one of two things. They want a locus to post their thoughts or they want to get on the social media gravy train. That there is no such train is beside the point. Too many people are busy telling them that they have to get their sorry butts online or they will shrivel up and die. Die! They actually say that.
Creating something worth reading is hard work. It requires thought. This makes people's head hurt. Nobody likes a hurting head.
Creating something involves risk. People may read your creation and tell you they hate it. They may say you're stupid and ignorant and despicably ugly. There is no shortage of critics.
Creating something can be counterproductive. It usually involves making choices, and once a choice is made, there's an extremely good chance that it will alienate someone who would make a different choice.
On the other hand, there are a few enterprising folks out there who will be happy, for a small fee, to provide you with a shortcut to wealth and success. There is search engine optimization (they even use the "O" word in the title of their services). They can teach anyone, even you, how to strategically place words and links in posts to trick Google into thinking you're a major player. And players drive that gravy train. Players get to call themselves things like "thought leader" and "social media rock star."
And SEO is only one of the many tricks in the social media bag. There are many others, from backlinking to running around the interwebz pretending to care deeply about every insipid poster or twitterer in the neighborhood. A tried and true method of becoming a player is getting everybody to love you, and all you need to accomplish that is to pretend to love everyone else. Nowhere else but the blogosphere has rank insecurity and the need for validation been raised to such high art.
Or you can write good posts that other people, for whatever reason, want to read.
But creating something that others might want to read is hard work and risky. Why chance it?