An exclusive interview with Harsh Agrawal: Less is new more
There is hardly anyone in the blogosphere who is not acquainted with a blogger “Harsh Agrawal” having a unique beard and style to represent him or the domain named “ShoutMeLoud“. Yes, these two are one of the most admired things in the blogging world and also claimed globally to be one of the topmost bloggers.
TechnoTactics: “ShoutMeLoud”, a name which has always made me fascinate about its origin, please share that moment behind naming your internet space “ShoutMeLoud”.
Harsh Agrawal: There is an interesting story behind name “Shout Me Loud”. When I was planning to buy my first domain name, I wanted to pick a name which is not only unique but also is memorable. Instead of going for a keyword rich name, I decided to pick up a name which can easily be brandable. I was thinking of name for long and couldn’t finalize anything concrete. One day while traveling (Coming back from office), I saw the word “Shout” on a billboard ad and name “ShoutMeLoud” came into my mind. I reached home, checked the availability of domain name, borrowed my friend credit card and booked hosting and domain name right away.
TechnoTactics: How far you believe this quote :
Harsh Agrawal: As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others. —Bill Gates
Bill Gates is a legend and above quote is the key to happiness. The real happiness for anyone is by giving or doing something for others.
TechnoTactics: What have you obeyed in your adventurous career of blogging that made you commanding?
Harsh Agrawal: One thing which I always stick to and stand by is; doing what is right. Honesty is something which I believe is the thing that helped me most, and most important writing things which matters rather than writing something for the sake of being there.
TechnoTactics: We all have a point/moment where something or someone have left an impact which works like an image which is constantly been processed by our neurons. Which is that moment/failure in your life for which you will always thank to and cherish, which you think was the most important incident to curve your life and making you a persona you are today?
Harsh Agrawal: There are many incidents in the past which taught me most valuable lesson in life. One of the best one I remember is from my elder brother “Gaurav Agarwal” who told me the most beautiful lines ever. When I was joining RHCP course (Linux) and on the first day he told me: “When ever you go to a new place, be silent and try to learn things from basics even if you are master in it. Being a good listener is the key to learning.”
Something that I’m following since then, and when ever I meet someone; I pass his wisdom to others.
TechnoTactics: I have modified a quote by “People don’t read for logical reasons. They read for emotional reasons.” How will you relate this quote with blogging?
Harsh Agrawal: You actually diving into the world of emotional psychology with this question. Let me give you my take on it, as your quote fits perfect but on certain scenario. What I believe is, emotions will let people connect to you and relate with your story or article, but it’s logic which is more important than just the emotions.
TechnoTactics: What are these things according to you:
Leadership: Person who gives credit to others for great work!
Happiness: Letting go!
Innovation: Accident or solution to a problem!
Writing: Talking to your inner-self and an art.
Time: Is now!
TechnoTactics: What do you think is the main cause of the current peak rate of blogs production? Is it recession or people finding it a “Happy go lucky” thing to earn online?
Harsh Agrawal: I believe it’s a mixture of understanding and misconception. There are many people who understand the importance and blogging in todays’ date and they are riding the wave. I call them smart people as they have a vision with their blog. At the same time, there is big misconception that blogging is easy income source, and a big chunk of newbies are trying their hand and leave blogging soon. I don’t blame those newbies, as they have seen others talking about money from blogging; and they missed out seeing the real work and dedication require to achieve that.
I don’t really call blogging as “Happy go lucky” profession, because it requires not only great deal of time and energy, but it also require a passion from inside. At the same time, if you love your work, you are happy!
TechnoTactics: Is blogging all about content? I mean just putting up some great content works out or any extra efforts are needed?
Harsh Agrawal: Good content is indeed the primary fuel for a blog, but a lot needs to be done to make blogging work for you. Only good content sounds like throwing a party in the middle of jungle and you are the only host and the guest.
Promotion is key ingredient to ensure you are heard and people will reach to your masterpiece. Be it a new blog or a popular blog, promotion is the key. For old and popular blog it’s quite easy, as most of the promotion is done by existing readers, in form of social-sharing. My suggestion for new blogger is to work on promotion after publishing, and at the same time focus on building readership for their blog. Which could easily be achieved with the help of offering various subscription options like Email subscription, FB Like box, Twitter follow to name a few. The key is to give an easy way for your first-time reader to subscribe to your blog.
TechnoTactics: You have been blogging since last 4-5 years and you have seen two phases of blogging and a significant shift from “Writing to Share” to “Competition to earn”. What would you like to say?
Harsh Agrawal: “Writing to share” and “Competition to earn” is something which existed 5 years ago and even in today’s date, and it will keep happening in near future. With the rise of blogging, competition has definitely increased but I guess “Writing to share” still wins the race. A blog which is created just to earn is short lived and failed to create an impact. There is nothing wrong with that strategy, as money is certainly an important element to survive and to live, but once you have crossed that stage of earning; you would realize “Less is new more”.
TechnoTactics: What do you think about “whether blogs will replace traditional newspapers” in the coming time?
Harsh Agrawal: I would rather reframe this question as “Whether websites will replace traditional newspapers”.
This shift is already happening and with the change in the way of; how we consume information, we are already seeing significant decline in newspaper and print media consumption. Blogs/Websites delivers news in real-time where as news via newspapers are usually one day old. Newspapers are still popular among certain age-group and I believe in next 4-5 years, newspapers will be thing of the past in metros atleast. They will face the same fate as Radio did in the past.
TechnoTactics: “A life without a cause is a life without effect.” So what cause is Harsh Agrawal fond of and longing to do always?
Harsh Agrawal: I’m a learner and at the same time I love to share stuff that I believe improved my life and will help other. I was not really blessed with a mentor or a guide to help me get through the life, and I believe having one is blessing for anyone. I just want to be that same mentor for others which I never had. After all, life is all about giving something valuable to others, and nothing is more valuable than an experience.
TechnoTactics: Your message for all.
Harsh Agrawal: Plan > Start > Keep moving forward > Don’t question your decisions> Learn from Mistakes > Don’t look back >Take a break > Resume your Journey > and remember Success is not a one shot game …It’s a Marathon…So keep moving forward!
Hope you enjoyed reading this interaction.