18 Lessons I’ve Learned about Blogging
1. It’s harder than it looks – There’s a lot more to it than just writing blog posts, but if you think about it it’s just like any other business. There’s always a lot more work going on behind the scenes to keep the doors open.
2. You need a USP – These days, no matter what niche you choose, you’re going to have competition. You need to quickly determine your Unique Selling Perspective. What sets you apart from your competitors?
3. Target a niche – You can blog about a wide variety of topics if you want to. Each time you change direction you’ll attract new readers – but you’ll also lose your old readers. One niche per blog.
4. Provide value – Readers can go anywhere to find information. Add value and tell your readers why that information is important to them and how they can use it in their own lives.
5. Diversity is crucial – Be prepared to develop multiple streams of income. It may be on multiple blogs, it may involve creating your own products, and it may involve providing your own services. No successful business person relies on one stream of income. Never put all of your eggs in one basket.
6. No man is an island – There’s a lot to learn and there’s a lot of opportunity out there. Start early making connections with other online business people – bloggers, designers, writers, product creators. Not only will you learn from them, they may also become business partners.
7. Beware of shiny baubles – The only way you can make $1,000 in 24 hours is if you do the advance work – which may take days, weeks, or even months depending on your product and marketing skills. Stick with your business plan and avoid those shiny baubles you’ll see along the way.
8. You’ll make mistakes – You’re going to make mistakes every single day – for the rest of your life. The key is to learn to quickly recognize when you’ve made one and quickly correct it.
9. Step away from your blog – It’s easy to become a slave to your blog but eventually those long hours will lead to a decrease in productivity across all aspects of your business. Plan ahead to take a break.
10. There are no absolutes – There is absolutely nothing about blogging that’s carved in stone. In fact, the more creative you are the more likely you are to succeed.
11. Be yourself – You’re going to be blogging for a very long time and hard work building a business. It’s even harder if you’re pretending to be something or someone you’re not.
12. Knowledge is power – The more you know about every aspect of blogging the better off you’ll be. That’s why everyone recommends you choose a niche in which you have some level of expertise, and that’s why you must be prepared to continuously expand your knowledge of marketing, blog mechanics and search engine optimization.
13. Creativity is crucial – There are hundreds of blogs in every niche but the earning potential is unlimited if you have the ability to develop creative marketing techniques and products.
14. Wear blinders – You’ll drive yourself crazy reading everything everybody says about you on the Web. They like you today, they love you tomorrow and the next day they think you’re crazy. Don’t let any of it go to your head.
15. Be consistent – Always use the same voice on your blog. Changing up your content, your style and your presentation to please a new segment of the audience will only disappoint the readers you already have.
16. Be open to ideas – Every where you turn you’ll see new marketing techniques, new blogging tools, even new writing styles and new content media. Always be aware of your surroundings and look for ideas that can help build and strengthen you own blogging business.
17. Be flexible – When you see those new ideas, be prepared to adjust your own game plan at a moment’s notice. It doesn’t take long for anything new to spread all across the Internet marketing community. Strike while the iron’s hot!
18. Be enthusiastic – One of the best lessons I’ve learned about blogging is: If you can’t approach your blogging business with enthusiasm every day then you’re doing something wrong. Granted, some chores are mind-numbingly boring, but every task adds something to your business. If you’re not enthusiastic every day, find out why and fix it.