If you are a blogger or looking to determine how you can fit blogging into your social media/marketing mix, The Sales Lion posted an excellent and provocative read which addresses the issues of content and blog positioning. As the day progressed, comments on the blog also added to the conversation - well worth checking out : Is Your Narrow Niche Killing You, Your Blog, and Your Happiness?
The concept of writing simply on one subject can be extremely limiting of creativity. Without creativity, it is simply impossible to write a good blog. I think it is worth taking that risk to write what you are inspired to write about. This can however create a challenge, especially if the original plan for the content of a blog had a limited structure (creativity knows no bounds).
Question: What if the topics covered in your existing blog really don't seem to fit with your new post ideas?
If you have to start a new blog to allow yourself the flexibility to feel free to write about the inspiring topics, then go for it. I guarantee that if you measure the success of your “limited” blog #1 vs. the one where you truly express your thoughts and allow your creativity to flow– you will find it will be"creative" blog #2 – the free form blog , that is going to fly. You have to consider that your first blog, may have been a springboard into the new blog that will truly allow you to express the ideas that will add value to what you share.
Another question: What do you put in your blog? The blog is the place to have the conversation, share ideas, share the experiences. Consider the following:
- Limited structure = Website content – brochures, definitions, facts. No personality necessary. Can be integrated into a blog if the information is useful but must be balanced with some kind of commentary and placed in appropriate categories or sections.
- Blog = creative insight, interesting material, sharing etc. Personality is a factor. You have to invest yourself in your blog. If you simply sit with a topic then force content onto your blog, not only will you be killing your creative spirit, but your readers will feel this as well.
If you are still unclear on what to do, you have to ask yourself: Is this your "substitute website" or your discussion with the world? A "website”, masquerading as a blog isn’t going to get far in the "Blogosphere".
A blog shouldn’t replace a website. It may serve the same purpose as your website, and your clients may find it as useful - but then you might want to ask yourself, why do I have a blog and a website? What is the intent for each? Reflection often gives us the answers and further direction to accomplish what we seek to do.
The Balancing Act - Make it practical
- If you decide to go with the flow of your mind and blog: be open to change, follow your vision, provide content that is interesting to your followers.
- Find a way that if you are writing for several potential audiences, you make it easy to navigate.
Warning: Failure to make your posts accessible or easy to follow, may leave you lost -for no other reason than people not understanding what they are looking at. If they cant find the content, how can they read it?
To help balance, remember that if you have different audiences, you may want to distribute the content of your blog via different targeted methods.
- Providing direct links to the areas of your blog that are relevant
- Providing tools such as "categories" to help lead your readers on the most direct route to what they are looking for. (...Working on this part myself, now! )
If your content is interesting, I believe that you will have followers who will get to know your style and what you are doing.
Give the development of your blog some time. You can't start blogging today and have it all figured out tomorrow. See what kind of feedback you are getting, and work it from there.
Creativity: Creativity is something that flows naturally, if you are a thinker, and you follow information in your world or industry, then you will likely have something to think about. If it is interesting, like a good conversation, as you think about it and use the information, you will have something to say about it or explore further: This is your blog. Doesn't need to be more complicated than that.
Engage in the community. Listen, learn, think, dream...
I have a feeling, everything falls together from engagement.
If you just write your blog as it happens, you will see the results and know what to do. It is your creation.