Writing a blog can be hard. More to the point, continuing to write a blog after you’ve been at it for a while can be hard. Especially if you’re struggling to think up new angles on your chosen topic — which is probably related to whatever it is you sell, right?
Well, I’ve got some good news.
Not everything on your blog has to be about the products or services you sell. In fact, I’d advocate that you should blog about other stuff.
My target audience here at Untamed Writing is online business owners, and my main topic so far has been how to write good shit for your business’s website. Because that’s what I do. I write good shit for my clients’ websites.
But I could also talk about building strong habits that help you manage your time more efficiently, or about why forming a solid morning routine is a good way to start the day. Those are things that I, as a small business owner, am interested in — and I’m betting that you, as a small business owner, are interested in them too.
So I could write about them here, and that would be cool, despite the fact that they’re not directly related to what I sell.
Because here’s the thing: building a personal brand is one of the best ways to run an online business now. Why? Because you’re definitely not the only person selling what you’re selling online. But you are the only you online. (I know, that came out all corny, but it’s what I need to say, so fuck it.)
You’ve got to stand out somehow, right? Building a personal brand is the way to do that.
What Does Building a Personal Brand Even Mean?
Building a personal brand essentially means making you the face of your business. No fancypants corporate façade. You. The real you.
It means letting your customers, clients, readers and whoever else stumbles upon your blog get to know you. Ideally, they will really really like you. (Some will, some won’t. Focus on the ones that do, or you’ll go crazy and begin to wonder why the hell you wanted to start your own business in the first place.) Here are some of the nice things that’ll happen if you blog about shit that matters to you:
- People who are like you will like you.
- People who have the same interests as you will like you.
- People who can relate to your stories because they’ve been through the same thing as you (or are currently going through it — in which case your stories are even more poignant) will like you.
- If you’re open and honest and, well, not a total dickwad, people will like you. (As you’re here reading this, I’m betting you’re not even 2% dickwad.)
And those are the people who will become your biggest fans. Those are the people who will devour every single word you utter. The people who will buy your products, hire you, recommend you to others.
Because it’s not businesses people want to work with. It’s other people. It could be you, if you let people get to know you.
So What Should You Blog About?
Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t a license to blab on about the minutiae of your life. But I’m not saying you shouldn’t do that either. You can write about whatever the hell you want, so long as you make sure it’s useful to your target audience.
Sure, the biz-related advice you dole out can help your readers. But so can telling stories about things you’ve accomplished, challenges you’ve faced and epiphanies you’ve had. Those things can provide a much-needed dose of inspiration, show people that it CAN be done, and let people know they’re not alone.
And the best part? You’ll end up working with the people you actually want to work with, because you’ll have shit in common with them.