Blogging Rules I’m choosing to ignore
When I started my blog I had no clear direction, no sense of the blogging universe, and I just wanted to share my words with others. As you start entering the blogging universe you start reading a million resources on what to do, how to do it, why you should do it, what you should do, and what you shouldn’t do.
I’m sure you’ve probably read some sort of post like “Things Bloggers do to be Successful”, “Golden rules to SEO”, “How to blog the right way”. While these posts bring valuable information, I don’t necessarily believe in any ‘rules’.
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I mean, phew, there’s so much to blogging depending on if you want to monetize your blog and how successful you want to be. But let’s back up here, first, you should not blog with the only intention of monetizing your blog. YES, you can monetize your blog and you should BUT if that’s your only goal you won’t achieve much. Why? Because if you’re not trying to add value to your readers and provide them with content that’s relevant they won’t reach your content. If they don’t read your content you won’t have much luck with traffic.
Secondly, how we measure success is different. Some people measure success by the number of page views they have, the number of followers they have, how much money they make, or how many blog posts they post a week. Because we all view success as different than we should stop treating our blogs like everyone else’s blogs.
Because we all view success as different than we should stop treating our blogs like everyone else's blogs.Click To Tweet
With that being said I do think there are some ‘rules’ we should follow as bloggers, but I’m choosing to ignore 5 of them. I found myself a few months ago, overwhelmed and drained in need of a big break. I needed to find creativity and inspiration again because all the things I was making myself do I wasn’t sure of why I was doing it. I needed clarity and inspiration.
I had forgotten my purpose and my why. I was too focused on increasing numbers, and traffic, that I stopped caring about why I was creating content and the purpose of my blogging. So in the blogging world, you should follow some ‘rules’ if you want to be successful, but keep in mind how you define success is different to how I define success.
Related Post: Find your Voice as a Blogger
You need to have a niche
I will address the elephant in the room- I do not believe in niches. Why yes I believe that finding a niche is great for audience purposes, and having a clear brand at the same time I find it boring. I don’t want to just talk about blogging, and I don’t want to just talk about travel. I believe you can still reach your ideal audience, without having a niche.
you can still reach your ideal audience, without having a niche.Click To Tweet
Instead, I believe with a focus. I also believe in the power of 3’s. And I also believe that you don’t need to limit yourself. Focus is a vast term, right? When I say focus I mean a collective group of ideas on which you talk about. The power of 3’s is like a mantra for me. I always focus on 3 goals a month, a week, a day and I also have 3 ‘categories’ in which I blog about. Those categories also have ‘subcategories’ as well.
So if you’re just starting to blog, blog about whatever the hell you want to blog about. You’ll find out what you really love to talk about and what you could talk about for years on end, and you’ll also find the things that just don’t jive with you. While we want to keep our audience in mind, you should never write something you simply don’t care about. That takes the passion and purpose out of blogging.
SEO, SEO, SEO
Yes, the dreaded SEO. What the hell is SEO exactly? It stands for Search Engine Optimization meaning that you want your blog posts to rank in SEO so they can be found on the internet. When you research things in Pinterest and Google you are using keywords. As bloggers who search for those keywords to incorporate into our blog posts so they can be found in search engines.
I believe in SEO, for ranking to a certain extent. I’m not super OCD about SEO to be honest because I already have a following and yes I’d love more organic traffic. The thing is if you get too hooked on making your SEO ranking, your writing can start to sound kind of robotic and mundane.
So my tip when it comes to SEO is researching your keywords first, writing your blog post, then going back in and adding keywords where they fit.
So my tip when it comes to SEO is researching your keywords first, writing your blog post, then going back in and adding keywords where they fit.Click To Tweet
Monetize Your Blog as Fast as Possible
You can monetize your blog in the next 3o seconds if you do this!
Gotcha! When I found out you can monetize your blog, I’m like YES this is my ticket to the free world. Just kidding. The idea of monetizing your blog is either too far-fetched or seems to be impossible. You’re reading a million posts on how people made XYZ amount of money in just XYZ days. The truth is it doesn’t happen overnight.
Hard work must be put in overnight, but before you even think about monetizing your blog you should be creating valuable content for your readers. They need to know why they need this affiliate product, and how it benefits them. While yes, you should monetize your blog it shouldn’t be your sole focus 24/7.
I believe creating loyal readers and creating valuable content should come first. Making money overnight isn’t a sure thing, so focus on the value first, and then put in the hard work so you can monetize your blog- because it is possible.
Beauty > Content
You have to have a beautiful website to attract readers. While a beautiful and responsive layout is ideal it’s not the end all be all. Content > everything. To be honest I’d rather read a blog post on a site that isn’t aesthetically pleasing that brings me value and inspires me over a blog post on a beautiful site with little to no value.
Don’t Get Personal
A lot of bloggers choose not to discuss their personal lives and leave as little as possible. To me, I want to know about the author and where they are coming from so that I can relate and resonate with them. Now I’m not saying go pouring out your entire lifestyle in your about me page, but don’t forget to add your personality to your blog. If you guys know me I talk about my family and my husband a lot. It’s personal, but I feel like I can’t give you the whole story or truth about this site without mentioning them.
My goal in blogging is to be as authentic and raw with my readers, and that means I do have to talk about my personal life and struggles. Blogging is like story-telling, we want to know the background story first. I want to know who you are as a person. I tell these stories, so my readers can resonate and realize they’re not the only ones. Navigating the adult world is hard. We shouldn’t have to face it alone.
However, I want to point out there is a point to ‘oversharing’. Meaning no matter what you should bring value to your readers, or send a message. So if you want to be vulnerable in storytelling, create a relationship with your viewers and give them value in sharing that vulnerability.
I learned this from a really great podcast by Melyssa Griffin’s podcast: Pursuit with Purpose. The episode with her interview on Vienna Pharaon a licensed marriage and family therapist. I highly recommend this episode for anyone, it really resonated with me. It’s not just for bloggers- it’s really for anyone. This particular part just really spoke to me when it comes to blogging and being vulnerable.
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