So, I’ve been doing this blog for three weeks now. I’m enjoying it. But I don’t know what I want to be. I don’t know where I want to take this blog.
As it’s a Saturday and I’ve got a bit of time, let’s take a while to mull over some ideas, shall we?
When I had the idea to start this blog, my intention was to set up some goals and then chronicle my progress towards those. I’m fully aware that most people won’t really care about me one way or the other, but I figured if I wrote about it publicly then there would be some sort of accountability – there’s more of a motivation to achieve my goals if I’ve publicly said I’m going to. If I’d set up a private blog somewhere, or just written a diary (do people still do that?) then there wouldn’t be that accountability.
(That said, a quick look at my visitor stats suggests nobody’s reading this stuff at the moment anyway, so it might as well be private!)
But as I’ve been writing and researching (private research, that is. So far I’ve put zero research into my posts, I’ve just sat down and written them), I’ve come to realise something:
There’s a market for the sort of content I’m trying to read about.
Oh, there’s a lot of competition too. There are plenty of blogs out there on personal improvement, none-job income streams, achieving goals, and so on. But while there are a lot of really good ones out there, there’s a lot of junk too. I know I can write just as well, if not better, than most of what’s out there. (If you’re thinking ‘well this isn’t all that good’, then bear in mind I’m not really bringing my A game at the moment. This is just me grunting out whatever’s on my mind at the time. no research, no editing.). So rather than just using this blog to chronicle my journey, could I use it to build some sort of an income? Actually use it to build an interesting life?
I don’t know. But I think there’s no harm in trying.
Time to step up my game
So far ,the posts I’ve been writing have been quite short. There’s also been no research done. It’s just been me writing whatever comes to mind, spending five minutes hunting down a stock image or two and then posting it. That’s all very well for a personal blog and it would be fine if I didn’t care if anyone read it or not. But if I want to make any kind of living out of this, I have to do better.
I’ve been doing a lot of reading on SEO and internet marketing, and the anatomy of a good post goes something like:
- Well researched keyword(s)
- At least 2,000 words long
- Provides value to the reader
- In depth, unique content
- Carefully thought out headline
- Relevant images
And so on. There’s also a lot of work that needs to be done to promote posts once they’re done. Posting them to social networks, reaching out to other bloggers and webmasters to build backlinks, etc. I’m not doing any of that at the moment. All I’m doing is tweeting each blog post – and that’s done automatically.
So if I want to get better at this, if I want to actually get some traffic flowing to this site, then I need to up my game.
But more importantly:
I need a niche
Pretty much everyone out there that gives advice about blogging (and there are a lot of people out there that are really, really good at this sort of thing) says that you need to focus on a niche. That’s good advice. I’m not going to do well if I talk about personal finance on one post and healthy eating the next. So I need to find a niche and focus on it.
Let’s see what we can come up with here:
- Personal finance
- Personal development
- Financial freedom
- Alternative (non-job) income
- Goals and motivation
So there’s five different niches already. Or I can sort of combine them into one ‘I’m a loser, here’s my journey into a better life’ niche. Could that work? Let’s find out. I think at this stage though, I’m not going to try and force myself into a particular niche. I’ll direct things a little, but ultimately I’d rather just see how things go, see what works.
I need an angle
Considering where I am in my life at the moment, I really can’t write about anything up there with any authority. At least, not yet. But I hope to be able to in the future.
So there’s my angle.
I can start from where I am now and talk about how my life is (hopefully) improving while I share tips and insights as I go. I can’t speak from authority, but I can share what I’m learning as I go!