I’ve had my domain name for ages. I’ve installed – and unistalled -Wordpress more times than I care to count, I’ve wadded knee deep in PHP code, created my own funky themes, tweaked existing templates and downloaded a bundle of plugins.
And yet, as years go by, I’ve still got nothing to show, except a bleak, drab and overall boring small collection of irrelevant posts.
So yes, my blog is currently a solid piece of crap.
I’ve been taking a closer look at blogs that I really like and trying to understand why I enjoy reading their stuff. There is no one size fits all magic formula to produce great content. There’s no easy shortcuts to develop a great blog. We all know that. But there are some underlying basic, common sense principles.
One of the first principles is deciding what the blog is going to be about. This seems so obvious and yet, I think it’s the main reason why my blog sucks. I never took the time and energy to decide what I wanted to talk about. I’m interested in all kinds of stuff, from marketing to vintage guitars, from photography to graphic design. Is it possible to encompass all those fields in a single blog? Sure, it’s up to me, after all. But unless I can somehow produce a large volume of relevant content about all these fields, focusing on one topic and avoiding spreading myself too thin seems to be a more efficient path to tread. The majority of the blogs I enjoy reading are crafted around a specific topic. And this, in turn, helps develop an engaged and loyal following.
We’ve all got things to say, stuff to share, stories to tell. The most interesting bloggers out there do so in a unique and personal way. It makes their writing pretty damn interesting and creates a strong connection with their audience. My blog is currently voiceless. I need to find my own tone. I’ve got to open up, learn to have some grit. And of course accept that I won’t be able to please everyone. That’s actually a little daunting.
Finding my voice will come thru practice. So, I’ve got to get in the habit of blogging. I’ve never given myself the opportunity to make blogging part of my daily – or weekly – ritual. I need to build in a routine of specifically writing for my blog. And post consistently.
But what I really need to do is to take the pressure off myself and know (or remember) why I’m blogging. Oddly enough, this is a tough one for me. There is so much jazz about building your own platform and creating content, it’s easy to get all worked up and forget why we’re doing this in the first place.
We’re not all in this game to build the next Mashable.
No one is forcing me to write, no one is pressuring me to produce content. I do so because I think it’s fun and enjoyable. And I want to keep it that way. So I’ve got to lighten up and accept that there are no rules: it’s my own space, I’m in charge and it’s all up to me to decide what I want to do with it.