Being unique and standing out in the online world is crucial to your blog's success. Learning how to blog differently is easier than it might seem. While other's are trying to copy the big blogs, find your own mojo and really hit your blogging stride.
One of the first lessons I learned when I started my blog was that I didn't need to follow anyone else's rules. You don't have to blog X times per week or write posts that are X many words long. [clickToTweet tweet=”Passionately write when you have an idea worth sharing. Make quality your calling card.” quote=”Passionately write when you have an idea worth sharing. Make quality your calling card. “] Nailing down what you're passionate about is key to making your blog different.
Finding your own voice in your writing sets the tone for your blog. The other things that make it unique are your style, fonts, image choices, and other visuals. Always strive to be as original as possible in every piece of your blog. You want people to come to know and love you and your blog.
If you're stuck on design and branding your your visual style, try working with a pro to help hone your brand. It's a challenge to interpret ideas and passion into color and style. Working with the right person makes all the difference!
Additional reading: 3 Steps to Finding Your True Writing Voice
If what you're doing is a knock-off of someone else, people will know it. You have the power to create something all your own – do it. There's not a shortcut to the blogging process but you'll find that once you dig in and put in the time, you'll find the essence of your personality and be able to translate that into writing and creating visuals.
Let's face it, it's not easy to be creative but it's fun and it can be really rewarding. You hear things like there's no new ideas but I believe that all the pieces that have made you what you are (where you grew up, books you love, what you studied in school) can create interesting perspectives and ideas that others may not have had.
Blog differently to be you!
Step one: Be organized
Create a plan for your blog. Random acts of blogging aren't going to fuel your success. Being consistent with your ideas becomes a solid habit when you stick to your plan.
When you have a bad week, and you know it's going to happen, your plan keeps you on track and focused. Focus is crucial for success.
I use Trello to plan blog posts from idea, to research, to graphics, to publishing. Having the steps planned out for each blog post and following my blog plan helps my content be more consistent and reliable for my blog readers.
Plan your article flow with Trello
Trello is a gift to bloggers to keep things organized and on track. It provides a solid foundation for working solo or with a team who can edit and add to your Trello.
You can add cards for tasks and add to-do lists in each card, then move it along in your writing process. An example of a blog post work flow:
- Blog idea – add your raw ideas for blog posts.
- Researching – add your links to articles and quotes for experts to include.
- On hold – park your ideas so they don’t get lost.
- Editing and graphics
- Ready to publish
Trust me that the time you spend organizing your ideas will pay off down the road. When life happens, focus keeps you on track.
Additional reading: Creatively Boost your Editorial Calendar
Step two: Be generous
One thing that I see all too frequently on social media and in blogging is that people get into a “Me Me Me” mentality and are actively competing with everyone and everything. That's a losing proposition. Focus on your goals and help others.
[clickToTweet tweet=”‘A rising tide floats all boats.' John F. Kennedy ” quote=”‘A rising tide floats all boats.' John F. Kennedy”]
Be the helping hand that you wish you had when you started. The good karma will pay off for you.
When you're researching your blog posts or are inspired by someone else's content, make sure to generously link to them as sources in your blog. This makes your articles richer and more inspiring for your readers.
An added bonus is that the blogs you link to might love your article and share with their social following. This is a bonus, not a guarantee – please don't try high pressured email to influencers with a lame form email that you got in an online class. Guess what, everyone's spam email is filled with them.
Being generous in your writing and social sharing can help to build a strong network that will strengthen your blog. It truly takes a community and network of friends to spread your articles across the web and to help new people find your content.
Step three: Be intentional
Speaking of networking, my blogging buddy Rebekah Radice is going to share one of the things that helps her blog differently. Rebekah's blog is super popular and people love to share her articles. Here are Rebekah's thoughts on blogging with intention.
Here are Rebekah's thoughts on blogging with intention:
My content (blog or otherwise) focuses on the struggling moment of my audience. It’s that moment of frustration, decision and search. In that moment, readers turn to Google or any other search engine for answers. I want to know what they're actually searching for.
Identifying what they're typing into search gives me the real intent. Once I know the true nature of their search, I gain a deeper understanding of how I can provide the solution.
For example, I'm writing an article on how to create a social media marketing plan. I determine that the intent of my audience is, “what is the best social media strategy?”
I then spend time researching alternative keyword expressions. I want to know who's ranking and what other keywords I might be able to rank for are.
This is the same strategy we use at Post Planner to map out our content. Here's a sample of our blog worksheet.
Additional resource: Dramatically Improve your Blog Content
I hope this gives you some ideas to blog differently and helps you find your fantastic focus to create something that you can truly be proud to call your own. Being intentional, generous, and organized are just three of the many ways that you can blog differently.
Find what works for you and be amazing. Be-YOU-tiful. Once you reach this stage of blogging, you'll be happy and free. Enjoy the journey!
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