How to Doom Your Blog in One Easy Step

Filed as Features on August 20, 2008 7:11 am

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I just went through a list of around 100 emails I have been sent via a call for questions. While the questions were different, all had the same issue:

  • “Why is nobody interested in my blog?”
  • “Why can’t I keep my readers?”
  • “Why can’t I think of stuff to write about?”

Want to know the cause behind these and other popular blog woes?

Before I answer, I have a question for you …

Do you write a blog …

  1. For yourself?
  2. For a particular audience?
  3. On a particular subject?

Your answer to this will tell you a lot about the problem this post began with.

How do these people get into trouble and doom their blog? They start writing their blog THEN try to decide what it is about and why they are blogging.

When you write a blog you need to know what it is about and who for. If the blog is for you then you should stick to that and not worry about your subscriber count or comments. For anyone who is concerned with growing an audience then you need to identify an audience or a specific subject.

What I find very often is people start a blog then try to find things to write about, try to please an ever-widening group, and end up helping or entertaining fewer and fewer people.

Rather than try to be all things to all people, focus on a smaller group and really delight them, or forget about pleasing anyone but yourself. Either way, you have to make the choice!

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  1. By Adam Singer posted on August 20, 2008 at 9:08 am
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    Great points, Chris – I think if you answered “yes” to all three of those questions, you hit the trifecta and your blog will be a winner:

    1. For yourself?
    2. For a particular audience?
    3. On a particular subject?

    If yes to all three, you are probably really passionate and strong minded about something. Your writing will probably show it!

    Cheers,
    Adam

    Reply

  2. By Arjen posted on August 20, 2008 at 9:11 am
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    I agree, it’s important to know who you’re writing for.

    My blog is focused on webdesign and internet, with a small lifeblog section. I do focus most on people who are building websites and blogs as well.

    Once you know your audience, you can start doing the promotion and marketing to that audience.

    One of the things I do is visiting a lot of blogs writing about similar subjects, and comment, communicate and learn from them.

    Reply

  3. By Gem posted on August 20, 2008 at 9:43 am
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    I never thought about writing for myself. Not long I shifted from writing personal things about myself to that of my job.

    When I was writing personal things, I was not at all concerned about someone reading my thoughts. When I started to find some audience for my blog, I suddenly felt “responsible” in what I have been writing about. I would sometimes run out of things to say because I am faced with the pressure of writing about a certain topic.

    Reply

  4. By Teena in Toronto posted on August 20, 2008 at 10:28 am
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    It definitely depends on why you are blogging. If it is for yourself, who cares about the visitor count?

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  5. By willy wonka posted on August 20, 2008 at 6:17 pm
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    Blogs about blogging and advice on how to blog. Writing blogs for no other reason than just to have a blog. The world has gone mad, there just seems to be a huge black hole of you bloggers who are obsessed with getting people to read your nonsense blogs. I sometimes think blogs should be banned if they have nothing of value to say. I think this would get rid of around 95% of blogs. You people don’t seem to realise the only people reading your blog are other bloggers trying to get ideas for their own blogs in order to get more people to read their blogs which are all about blogging adive. Blog off.

    Reply

  6. By Chris Garrett posted on August 21, 2008 at 2:04 am
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    And for every blog about blogging there is one original smart person who has to write the same comment as “Willy”.

    Willy, if you have nothing of value to say … why did you comment? :)

    Reply

  7. By willy wonka posted on August 21, 2008 at 3:47 am
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    My comment had more value than most of your blogs. Chris Garrett, your blog is the most dreariest thing i have ever seen. It’s my idea of what they probably read in the seventh and twelth levels of hell.
    Another blog giving pointless advice on how to spread the word about pointless blogs. And you all wonder why you’re not making money from your blog adverts.
    The way to make a good blog is simple, just write about something interesting and include pictures. There you go, that’s all the advice you will ever need.

    Reply

  8. By app posted on August 23, 2008 at 4:04 am
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    On one of my blogs, I write for “George”. He’s my imaginary reader that has been there since the very first post and has loved everything I have ever written.

    As long as he’s happy, I am happy.

    As long as he keeps reading and liking it, I’ll keep writing.

    And the reason why I don’t display RSS subscriber count on that blog is because George isn’t into feeds.

    Reply

  9. By Living PLush posted on August 24, 2008 at 9:15 am
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    I do run into this issue. Our site is made up of multiple blogs and depending on the writer, some pages and stories do better.

    Reply

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