As a blogger, I’ve done my “rounds” and paid my “dues” in order to create successful websites and online assets. Get around enough and you’ll realize that there is a lot of the same information being passed around as being “expert” information. Unfortunately, people take a lot of that information to heart and this leads them down a path, in their blogging, that ultimately doesn’t sync with their unique style and branding.
In an effort to explain what goes into blogging, I am going to share some of the things that you won’t learn from simply reading this (or any) blog post about blogging.
Unlearn #1: The “Traffic” Secrets
Do a Google search for “traffic tips” and you’ll be bombarded with thousands of articles that explain the greatest list of tips on website traffic (usually in a list post). You could read a few of those, get a sense of what’s required to build up traffic but the overall problem with the vast majority of these articles is that they do not fit every type of blog.
The reality is that it is completely up to you to find out how to reach your target audience. You can certainly write guest posts for relevant blogs but are you talking to your core audience that will come and visit after the fact? You could start a link building campaign but have you crafted your blog to market to people that will buy? Like anything, you shouldn’t take a blanket approach to traffic generation nor should you fall for “secrets”; the reality is that it comes down to creating great information for the people that want to learn about the topic you know about.
Unlearn #2: The Monetization “Rules”
How many times have you read “build a list!” or “create a product!” when you read blog posts about making money. The overall problem with these approaches is that these techniques are certainly affective when it comes to topics like blogging about blogging or make money online. Unfortunately, you could be in an entirely different niche that it doesn’t fit at all.
You could always learn ways to integrate a list or build a product but have you asked yourself whether your audience even wants those items? Instead of going down a path that may not be rewarding, focus on what has worked in the past by doing your own thing and naturally evolve from there.
Unlearn #3: The Sense of “Community”
Take a look at the comments on your blog; I can assure you that the majority of them are coming from fellow bloggers. A comment makes you feel great inside; it shows that people are paying attention to your articles and gives you a small sense of reward for your hard work but the problem with comments from fellow bloggers is that they are generally not the audience you’re aiming for.
You need to understand that the majority of people reading your blog will never comment; they read your content, may come back time to time but ultimately see something they like and move along with their day. Entertaining your content and direction based on what you’ve heard from fellow bloggers makes you miss the point of reaching your true audience – the ones that aren’t commenting all the time. Paint a picture of who your real reader is and keep up the good fight of reaching them rather than entertaining your peers because this is what allows you to expand your blog into a business in the long run.
The only real way to understand how blogging will work out for you is to do it on your own. However, it’s very important to educate yourself with common practices in blogging because it generates ideas for your direction. However, if you plan to build a successful blog than you want to take everything with a grain of salt and be doing your own, unique approach to things instead of simply following a checklist.