I occasionally get a question about which blog posts I have authored get accessed the most frequently. My posts tend to fall into one of four categories.
- Insights into the American Dream including use in economic development.
- Tips on creating/judging effective advertising.
- General business leadership advice.
- How to self-brand for success.
The question is interesting to me, because the subject of greatest personal passion is helping people understand what the American Dream actually is and how to use Xavier University’s American Dream Composite Index as a success metric for economic development. This is the space I think I can make the greatest personal difference. But, it turns out the most frequently accessed posts on my website are actually about advertising tips and self-branding.
Here are the top five most visited pages from my website in 2019 to date.
Note, not a single post about the American Dream is in the top five.
From a practical perspective, I get it. I made a living as a Brand Builder at Procter & Gamble. General business leadership and advertising skills were drivers of my professional success and that knowledge can be helpful to a wide range of marketers and general managers.
From an emotional perspective, I wish more people were reading the posts about the American Dream. There is no other concept more important to the success of the United States and yet more misunderstood. The Media continually gets it wrong when they attempt to describe the American Dream in articles, and several different groups have tried to usurp the American Dream for their own self-interest (housing industry and education industry). Elected Officials pontificate about the American Dream, but do so in superlatives that educate nobody and seem to never influence legislation.
The fact is the American Dream is a fairly complex concept. Xavier University has done seminal work to statistically define what the American Dream actually is. For some people it includes home ownership, for some it includes a college education, but for many it includes much more. The Xavier University research is the basis underpinning the blog posts I author on the subject. Understanding the American Dream is key for the investment decisions championed by economic development professionals and ultimately made by elected officials. It is my belief that the true measure of success for communities, states and our nation is the degree to which residents perceive they are achieving their American Dream. Decisions on how to use our taxpayer dollars should be strongly influenced by whether the investment will help us achieve more of our American Dream or not. Otherwise, what is the point?
I recently wrote a post sharing the latest look at cities and states that meet the criteria of an American Dream location. These are places current residents perceive they are realizing more of their American Dream than national average. There are lessons to be learned from these locations that can help economic development professionals and elected officials in other locations better serve their residents.
I encourage you to read the post, even if it is simply to see if where you live made the cut to earn the American Dream location title. I would also ask you to share the post link with your personal network on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc., as well as your local media. Help me create awareness of what the American Dream really is. With your help, maybe a post about the American Dream will make the top five list of most frequently accessed posts on my website.