Regardless of how you typically blog, whether it’s a business or a hobby, at some point you might be tempted to blog about your personal life. You might talk about a past relationship you’ve had, refer to your day job, or even link to a registry for your upcoming wedding. But is it a good idea to blog about your personal life? Or should you keep your blogging life and personal life as separate as possible?
Why You Would Blog About Your Personal Life
Let’s look at some of the major reasons you would consider blogging about your personal life in the first place:
- Personal experiences. You might include references to your personal experiences if they share a theme with your work, if it’s for your wedding, like a Wedding Registry, or demonstrate an important point. For example, if you’re blogging about how to create a successful startup, and you’ve had entrepreneurship experience in the past, it’s a perfect opportunity to reference those stories and add more authority to your work.
- Connecting to an audience. Sharing your experiences could also help you connect to your audience. If you’re trying to establish a personal, welcoming brand voice, you’ll need to write in a way that people can emotionally relate to. Sharing your personal experiences can help create a deeper connection with your readers, especially if they’re experiences your readers have been through before.
- Promotion or awareness. In some cases, you may want to promote or raise awareness about another aspect of your life. For example, you could promote a side blog or podcast you’re starting to generate a new segment of your audience. You could also spread the word about a major life event, such as getting married or having a child—especially if it’s going to impact your work in any way.
- Catharsis. If you’re going through a hard time or are annoyed by some aspect of your life, blogging about it can give you a kind of catharsis. Depending on your current readership levels and your type of work, this could serve as a useful side note or the topic of a standalone post. This may not bring you any specific advantage as a professional blogger, but may improve your mental health and/or focus.
However, there are some disadvantages to blogging about your personal life, as well:
- Turning your audience off. Not everyone is excited to read about personal stories or narratives. If your audience is detached from you, as a person, or if they’re not interested in your personal experiences, they may be unwilling to venture any further in your blog.
- Privacy concerns. Sharing about your personal life will, perhaps obviously, make those details of your personal life publicly available. If you write about your relationship without your partner’s consent, they may be hurt if/when your friends and family read about it. Personal details may also pose a safety concern in rare instances, especially if you’re blogging about controversial subject matter.
- Deviation from the original material. If your blog starts as a personal narrative, you’ll have to set early expectations about the nature of your writing. If you’re writing about something professional, however, a sudden shift to writing about more personal topics could alienate your audience and dilute the main function of your blog. You’ll need to stay consistent with your brand voice, as well as your range of expertise.
- Liability. In some cases, specifically naming companies or individuals in your blog could be against the law. This is especially true if you’re making negative references to them. Fortunately, this is an easy
downside to protect against; simply anonymize what and who you’re writing about.
The Bottom Line
As you might imagine, there’s nothing entirely “wrong” or “right” about blogging about your personal life. Every situation is different, and ultimately, the value and risks of personal blogging are going to be unique to your circumstances. Almost any blog can be made more appealing with a splash of personal perspective or insight. But, by that same token, any personal reference could undermine the authority or effectiveness of your blog. Consider your options carefully, and go with the decision that best suits your brand.