Don’t Listen to Self-Righteous A-Listers and Read Blogs


Don’t listen to self-righteous A-Listers and read blogs…

If I read one more “A-Lister” blog post preaching the doctrine of:

“Don’t waste time reading blogs and get to work…” 

…seriously I might lose all faith in what we’re trying to do here as bloggers.

Let’s get something clear:

The Internet is One Huge Crowdsource!

Read BlogsYou can’t inovate in a bubble.

Success, change and growth don’t happen on an Island… Ever hear of Darwin?

We all feed off each other constantly and forever, building, learning and adapting from the thoughts and experience of those around us.

We grow together as a community as a society by sharing, by explaining, by fishing out all the crap that doesn’t work and building on the designs that do.

We do that by reading, watching and listening to each others content!

Don’t read blog posts?

…get bent.

Read blogs and be awesome!

Read Blogs and Grow

I read approximately 35-40 blogs a week and probably comment on 25-30 of those.

I read…

…to learn

…to laugh

…to apply

…to focus

…to strategize

…to question

…to test

…to grow

…to inspire

…to motivate

…to activate.

If I can read the thoughts and ideas of Derek Halpern, Marcus Sheridan, Pat Flynn, Danny Brown, Chris Brogan, Jay Baer, Ana Hoffman, Danny Iny, Jason Fonceca, Tom Treanor, Stanford Smith, Brent Kelly, Sonia Simone, Francisco Rosales, Kristi Hines, Neil Patel, Craig McBreen, Paul Wolfe, Ms. Ileane, Mark Schaefer

If I can read the work of these masters, learn from them and then infuse my own thoughts, beliefs, passions, ideas and apply that mixture to my own online presence…

…why would I not do that?

Blogs provide free access to the minds of very smart, very creative, very driven people and you’re an idiot if you’re not taking advantage of that access.

Read Blogs and Succeed

Do you know how much it would cost to sit down and get consulting from one of these cats?

A lot.


Because they’re really good at what they do and their time costs money.

But for some reason they’re all stupid enough to give away many of their fantastic ideas for free… in a blog post.

All you have to do is read it.

Apply those ideas to your blog.

Then succeed just like they do.

It’s truly that easy.

Read Blogs and Connect

Read blogs of masters, such as those I listed above, and connect with like minded people.

I read Marcus Sheridan’s blog all the time.

Do you know how many supremely talented and Awesome cats I’ve connected with just being a part of Marcus’s community?

A ton… John Falchetto, Ameena Falchetto, Paul Wolfe, Jeevan Jacob John, Craig McBreen, Matthew Stock, Rebecca Livermore just to name a few… there are more.

Everyone of these connections have affected me as a blogger and person and I’m thankful for every relationship.

I met them all because I read blogs.

The Rub

You have to work on your business and make money…

…but you must also read blogs.

Reading blogs is how bloggers network.

It’s how we grow.

Don’t let self-righteous A-Listers who want you to think they’re so busy and so successful they don’t have time to read blogs make you feel guilty about reading blogs.

Especially if it’s any of the blogs I’ve linked to in this post. Every single one of them is AMAZING.

Now go!

Read blogs and be Awesome!

Thank you and Good luck,

I am Ryan Hanley

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  • Does anyone else see the irony of an A list blogger telling you to stop wasting time reading blogs!? If it wasn’t for their readers, they wouldn’t be A-listers to begin with!

    Something else I have a problem with lately is that all these A-listers are trying to sell sell sell. I understand that they need to capitalize from their hard work and/or make a living but it is starting to become over the top. I follow a lot of minimalist and simple living blogs. The foundation of most of these would tell you to remove the excess and clutter from your life and reduce spending…but with the next breath you hear…hey buy my book for $14.95. Which is it?

    Don’t worry… I will keep reading your blogs! Thanks for the value-added content!

    • Brian,

      That’s the problem… Don’t read other blogs, but please please keep reading mine so I can “Monetize” you… Horrible.

      Look bloggers have to make money too… I have products on this site that you can by that I highly recommend.

      But the blog shouldn’t be about the sale it should be about the information and the sale should be an after thought.

      Appreciate you comments buddy!

      • Thanks!

        I totally get that as a blogger, you might want to make some money…the problem I have is when it becomes evident in each and every post. The blog goes from a useful fun site to a always being sold Don’t worry! I don’t get that feeling here!

        Thanks again!

  • Totally agree, I try to set aside some time to read blogs on a regular basis as it helps to stimulate my mind when it comes to producing new content for my own blog.

  • Ryan,
    Great post! As a newbie blogger,I sometimes feel guilty for reading, because of I’m reading I’m not blogging and that’s what I’m trying to do right? I realize that reading other blogs help me to become a better blogger myself.I also learn several tips and tricks by reading.We do not live in a vacuum.Each one, teach one.
    A taste of Jae Mac’s work: The Best Day Ever…Part 2

  • I absolutely agree.
    I can also add that A-Listers are hypocrites – they might say you shouldn’t read and write, but they hire best bloggers and social media people money can buy. Plus reading is a great way to improve my English.

  • Check it –

    First off, thrilled, flattered and touched that reading my stuff helps you at all. Psyched to be included with such esteemed names in the community :)

    Secondly, I have something to add –

    Don’t read blogs, read blogs, which is the way?

    I see it more as phases and cycles.

    When you’re starting out, phase 1 = read + comment on blogs. Make a splash and a presence in “other people’s houses”.

    As you grow, phase 2 = focus on doin’ you, content, publishing, ignore the masses as you get busy.

    Eventually you’ll get to ‘losing touch’, phase 3 = re-establishing presence, making the rounds.


    A taste of Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca’s work: Pop Songs Own My Soul (Do They Own Yours?)

    • That seems a very natural course of action for sure.

      I think we determine what we like and don’t like, what makes us feel good and what doesn’t, what we want to be known for Online by first reading the work already done and applying some of it to our own presence, adding our own opinions and seeing what happens.

      Then you get more confidence and you don’t need that was much… But the communication. The collaboration… That always remains…

      I don’t think that phase 2 has to happen on an Island.

      Otherwise I’m right with you.

      Thanks dude!

  • Dear Ryan:

    You are spot on with this article!

    I am a content curator, so I read a lot of articles every week. Like you, I try to leave comments as well.

    I have learnt so much from reading other blogs! I love it!

    Thank you for writing this article!

  • I start what you advised here Ryan, reading your stuff :). You are so right about reading blogs. It’s not just a matter of relationship, you can get inspiration too on what you can write next. That’s mean reading could ease your efforts to content updates. That’s cool.
    A taste of Lana’s work: Remedies of Bad Breath

  • Ryan,

    First of all, thanks so much for the mention.

    I really don’t understand bloggers who tell people not to read blogs. Why in the world would any of us be blogging if what we write isn’t worth reading?

    I definitely learn a lot from reading blogs, and I also find that reading what other people write helps me to clarify my own opinions. This is true even when I don’t happen to agree with what I read — or perhaps especially when I don’t happen to agree, because reading opinions contrary to my own makes me really think about why I believe what I believe.

    I also agree about relationships that form as a result of blogging. Though I also connect with people on Twitter and Facebook, I find that some of my best relationships have come through interacting with people on blogs.

  • Internet is free to read and learn. Every blogs and websites offering us a free knowledge
    that might help for us or our business to grow. That is an awesome post Ryan. You have really layed out your points in great detail. Great job ;)
    A taste of Becca’s work: Hello world!

  • Hi Ryan,

    First of all, thank you for the mention!

    Actually, I’m now working on a post about this hive we are in, and how we bounce ideas off each other and learn, and laugh and test … ;) It’s an awesome space for all that, and we do grow together. My life has changed quite a bit since I started commenting on blogs a little over a year ago.

    What is also amazing are the friendships you develop online. They move into IRL and soon you are fast friends or talking business. All good.

    I read many blogs, and I’m always adding to my reader. I also listen to more than a few podcasts, which have also helped me in many ways, from writing new posts to dealing directly with clients. So, I’m not reading nearly as many books as I used to, but I’m still learning a ton.

    Oh, and you, Sir are simply killing it! I love what you are doing and it’s been great to connect with you.
    A taste of Craig McBreen’s work: The key to online success? YOU

    • Craig,

      It has absolutely been my pleasure getting to know you and exchange ideas. I can attribute my growth as a businessman almost 100% to connecting and learning from bloggers and thought-leaders like yourself.

      The best part is we’re only getting starting…

      All the best bro!!


  • Blog commenting is great tool, Ryan, especially for building relationships ;)

    Recently, I have been spending more and more time reading and commenting on blogs (and I have already started getting more results). It’s great – learning, discussing, conversing, building relationship, sharing all at once, right?

    PS: Thanks for the mention, buddy! Honored to be in a list with people like Craig, whom I respect and follow :D
    A taste of Jeevan Jacob John’s work: Facebook Interview Chat, Productivity Challenge and Podcasts!

  • Totally agree with you here Ryan. I’ve learned a ton from you, Marcus and many others out there in your communities. You guys helped educate and inspire me to start my own Inbound Marketing consulting biz. It’s off to a great start.

    One thing I think that’s missing out there content-wise in the blog-o-sphere is how to actually make $ !!! I’m not talking from the potential client’s perspective, but from the Inbound Marketer’s who is trying to reach those clients.
    Why is that?

    I’m working on a blog right now to address that very subject. I probably won’t release it until I get a few more notches under my belt, but I hope to make some noise.

    Likes, friends, and tweets don’t pay the bills. Clients do.
    A taste of Matthew Stock’s work: How Inbound Marketing Shortens Sales Cycles and Improves Profits

    • Dude,

      I’m very excited for your new venture (and that guest post is coming I promise)… Do you read Pat Flynn at all? He’s very good at that. Derek Halpern is another one.

      Maybe these are household names to you but if not I would start there.


      Ryan H.

    • Ana,

      I love really great ideas from smart bloggers and then implementing them into my own online presence… testing which work and which don’t and doing that again!

      Thanks for stopping by!!

  • “Information management” will be one of the most important skills of the 21st century. It requires a plan. Finding the best use of your blog time is a discovery process. Look for bloggers who tell you something you don’t already know and you can site specific reasons how their blog has benefitted you. More on social media here:
    A taste of Mark Grimm’s work: Mitt’s VP Pick of Paul Ryan: A Line in the Sand

  • Thank you Ryan. Excellent post. I agree 100%. I read tons of blogs every day, and many of my business relationships started by reading other people’s blogs. For example, I’m a partner in the new Social Habit research project. Our team is Jason Falls, Mark Schaefer, Tom Webster, and me. All of us met through blogging.

    • Jay,

      Thank you for sharing… That is the kind of experience that I want people to understand is possible. Participating in other blog communities builds the same kind of networking opportunities as going to a local chamber function.

      Appreciate you stopping by for being such a great resource!


  • Hey Ryan

    Thanks for the mention…glad you’re learning some stuff. What’s important – most important actually – is you work out what works for YOU, and implement that. Too many people just read the blog posts and don’t do anything with the information.

    Really looking forward to our interview in September!

    A taste of Paul Wolfe’s work: How Seth Godin Broke My Analytics!

    • No doubt Paul… Thanks for stopping by.

      Taking action is one of the characteristics of the people that actually get a head online versus those that don’t…

      And I VERY MUCH looking forward to our chat!



  • I didn’t realize such fancy pants bloggers were telling their peeps NOT to read blogs! That’s so weird! I guess I just don’t surround myself around bloggers who think like that. They’re essentially saying that nobody should read THEIR blog…so why are they blogging if they don’t want people to read their blog?! LOL

    I completely agree with you, though. Not only does reading blogs enlighten and educate us as a people, it also lets us connect with other like-minded individuals from all around the world! I don’t know what I would do without blogging. :)

    Thanks for the post!
    A taste of Morgan’s work: Opportunities Come From Everywhere

  • Hmmm, the primary place to hear this is your boss and your parents. I’m surprised bloggers would actually say not to read blogs. Do they want people to stop reading their blog. Pretty silly.

    Ryan – are you getting updates from ? I encourage people to read blogs including mine. Happy reading!

  • Spot fricking ON! Ryan. Extremely well-said, especially coming from within the insurance community. It’s telling that one major insurance company I won’t name (but which has a really big tower in Boston) BLOCKS BLOGS on their internet servers. WTF! Sorry – just had to say it. The other thought that comes to mind is the video by Steven Johnson about Where Good Ideas Come From … that “chance favors the connected mind.”
    A taste of Mike Wise’s work: Will “Social” Go Away? Most certainly…

  • I understand why some people say “Stop reading blogs and get to work” and a solid reason is that many people get in the habit of always learning and never doing.

    I don’t read blogs or open up a browser until my content is written. I also break up my online work into 3 sections.

    1. Content creation
    2. Marketing and promotion
    3. Training and Education

    Reading and commenting on blogs falls into category 3 with an added benefit of traffic or links. This 3 step process guarantees that I do work, get traffic and leads, AND get free coaching (to some degree), which all top marketers recommend.

    Thanks a bunch,

    • Gabe,

      That is an excellent process… I’m glad you shared it because I think that many people will find it useful. It’s great that you have the discipline to not read other blogs till you have your own content created for that day!

      All the best.

      Ryan H.

  • Ryan, I am continually amazed at the wealth of information available on blogs for free. People are missing the boat if the ignore them. Thanks for the post and the mention. Your blog is definitely a must read for me. I will make sure to add those blogs you mentioned to my reader.