People jump into blogging hoping it’s a magic bullet that will bring them or their company a huge boost in exposure, credibility and sales. This is the very reason the web is littered with MILLIONS of abandoned blogs. In the rush to establish an online presence, most forget to include the most important planning elements: heart & soul. There are three crucial things most bloggers forget as they’re developing their blogs…

 

1. Develop YOUR vision. When I decorate a room, I love browsing stores and magazines to find ideas. I love finding the perfect blend of colors or that just-right accessory that pulls the room together. And I love that months or years later I can move things around a bit or add a new piece to give a room new energy without changing the overall look. You can do the same with your blog.

 

Rather than just add random musings to a blank canvas/screen, take some time to think about what you want to – and can – put out into the world. What’s the primary focus of your blog? Is it about life as an artist? Muddling through mamahood? The trials and tribulations of working in your industry? That’s one of the critical questions you should let bounce around in your head and heart before you finalize the look, feel and purpose of your blog.

 

2. Let the true you come out to play ~ and trust people want to read what you have to say. Every month, 70 million Americans read blogs; there are bound to be a whole bunch in there who’d be interested in your views on life as you know it. As you create or renovate your blog, this is no time to shy away from who you are and where you’ve been. But it is a great opportunity to consider how you’re unique, what you have to offer that others may not, and what kinds of topics pump you up. Bloggers who write for others first – writing what they think people want to hear instead of what comes straight from the heart – wind up getting disillusioned and bored with the process.

 

3. Give yourself room to grow. Finding your niche is good, but many new bloggers pigeonhole themselves by focusing too narrowly on a specific subject. Want an example? As a radio host who needs to research guests and review pitches frequently and efficiently, I find it completely frustrating when an author has a different blog for each book he or she has published. It happens frequently – perhaps because they’re not always with the same publisher or because one title is vastly different from another. Sadly, it usually drives me {and, I suspect, others} away.

 

Whether you’re an author or a scientist or a busy mom, we’re all evolving and juggling on any given day. Find the common denominator in all of that commotion to be the inspiration and focus for your blog. For an author, the common denominator may be YOU, as a writer.  Readers want an inside peek at what it’s like to be you, see the world through your eyes and feel invested in the projects you’re facing. Write about the creation and launch of each book, tales from the trenches of a book tour, learnings from writing conferences, conversations with fellow writers. Find a theme that ties your wide range of experiences together and suddenly your blog grows wings, your journey takes shape for readers and the possibilities of what you’ll write in the future become limitless. Most importantly, your blog will feel like play more than work.

 

Want more? Check out my How To Build a Blog You Truly Love ecourse.

{You are welcome to re-post this article if you include a byline credited to Liv Lane with a link back to livlane.com or blog.livlane.com.}