So you’ve started blogging. Great, there are literally 700M other people doing exactly what you do. What you do being writing 300 to 500-word posts at a regular interval. You see, just blogging by itself isn’t enough any more when it comes to standing out. When a 12 year old with an internet connection can do what you do, and a professional writer can do it better where does that leave the rest of us? Instead of focusing on what you do, focus on why you do it and build a unique brand for your blog.
Nervous? It’s good to be a little nervous, it is your blog (and possibly your business after all). Look at us for example, how many marketing blogs are out there? Enough to make you sick that’s how many, and we could be the one that is funny, or swears or, gag, the best one but that’s not enough. Instead we fall back on our mission: that blogging is great, but hard, and to succeed you need craft a compelling message and story to share.
So rather than read me babble further, let’s get to it.
Where to start
Branding is hard, there’s a reason that people can charge exorbitant prices to do it for you. You don’t need that though. Instead you need a pad of paper, a pencil, some music, and whatever else you’re into that helps you focus. For me it’s the ‘Classic Rock’ radio station on Pandora and a walk up and down the street in Boston. Whether that’s optimal or not I don’t know I just care that it works.
The point is, find a strategy that works for you to help get the juices flowing. This is a creative process and one that requires thought. While I’d be tempted to say that a beer or two could help (seriously it can help with creativity) it’s also a serious undertaking so sobriety may be a good move.
We’ve written on finding your why, so to keep things brief there are a few questions you should answer in finding your unique brand.
- What fundamental problem are you trying to solve? What need are you filling?
- If you were to give up now, what would be lost?
- At a base level, what does someone get out of an interaction with you?
From these questions you’ll start getting to the heart of why you bother. You’ll get a sense of what you stand for at your core, and that is what you will build your brand off of. At it’s core Monstah Mash stood for Boston-based Sox fans, we wanted to be a window into the city and to connect fans worldwide to the team they loved. It worked and of dozens (if not hundreds) of options when it came to Red Sox blogs people chose us. For Blog Trackr, we stand by and for bloggers, we love blogging and realize how hard it is to succeed so we aim to preach our message of content curation to pave the road to success.
Find your core mission, and let your brand evolve from there.
How to evolve
Once you have your base message the hard part is out of the way. Seriously it is, so pat yourself on the back a bit. Now it’s time to grow your brand.
When we started Blog Trackr our initial mission was a bit different. We were aimed to small bloggers who wanted to make money and automate their blog’s growth. We’re still all for automating your blog’s growth but it’s so much more than that. We want to automate how your blog finds and builds its identity. How you find and build your identity. Whether you are a solo blogger (go you!) or a business owner (go you!) you have a message you need to share, and we want to help you find it.
Notice, we didn’t go wider.
Actually we went narrower. Instead of trying to spread a large net and build this all encompassing vision we decided to laser focus a bit. There are tons of marketing blogs and even a handful of content curation tools, what makes us different? Our focus, our area of expertise that above all makes us the leading force behind and the reason to join. Do the same with you, stop trying to shoot for a universal appeal or a broad market (like millennials). No, instead think about who you are trying to reach and what they believe in. Build off your core to refine what you put out there to match that a bit. You don’t want to pander to people, but you want to strip away the excess that your target will ignore to show the meat of your message that they are looking for.
I’m not going to lie it will take work and research. But all good and valuable things take effort and if you want to build a unique brand for your blog you better believe it will take plenty of sweat to create one. When you’re finished you’ll have something to be proud of, and me looking a bit like this:
I hope that this post is good food for thought. While it is impossible for me to build your brand for you through this post I can point you in the right direction at the very least. It’s a large undertaking, blogging (successfully at least) is not just a simple hobby any more, it’s your statement to the world–or rather, the web. A quality blog brings in new leads and visitors, from those (whether you do it as a side job or for your business) you could bring in customers. No one will by from any old blog though, but they may from one they believe in. That’s how we made money at Monstah Mash, it’s how we’ve got users for Blog Trackr, and it’s how you can build your business too.