Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Geek Chic 101 - What does it take to be a blogger?

Personally for me, I think this question itself is an understatement. If you were to ask around, I assume people will give you a bunch of different answers.

I remember when I started out blogging, my friends were my fans. I find that rather funny now because it's not like we don't see each other everyday, gossip about the same thing and what not. Right? Now that it has been years, I myself have self-proclaimed that I am an Otai blogger. [Otai means Old Timer.] And what I see today in the blogging world is becoming cliche [Read: Making money] compared to I-write-what-I-want-my-friends-were-my-fans era. [Cheh era. Macamlah dah berabad. T_T]

I've been reading around more lately, finding articles that explains what makes a good blogger. Most of the articles I read has also characterized their article to money-making contents which I simply just cannot agree. Except for this one, by MoneyMakingScoop.com. His site is also about money making lah of course! Oh well, it's not that I totally despise people making money out of blogging, no. I wish I could too! But, by doing it the right way, my way. Anyway, I like the way this blogger Chris Jacobson depicts his article with a personal touch. So, lets!

There are a number of reasons one chooses to blog. It could be for personal reasons (to vent), for fun or for a specific purpose in hopes of gaining something down the road.From the time I’ve been blogging (July 2006 – present), I’ve noticed two groups of people in the internet marketing niche. Those who blog with the mindset of making money and those who blog and end up making money because of it. You want to be in the second category of bloggers – trust me.

Blogging to Make Money
Blogging for the sole purpose of making money may make you a few bucks, but in the long run it’s not a solid business model and you’ll soon crash. If the only reason you’re writing posts is to throw in your affiliate link every chance you get, you can guarantee you won’t be blogging for too much longer. The whole idea is to build up an audience and gain the trust of your readers.

People are very savvy these days and can spot duplicate content, pointless posts and sales pitches. Think long and hard about what you want to accomplish and pick a solid niche. Blogging can be very profitable, but if you force it, chances are you won’t be around too long.

Making Money Blogging
This is the group where most bloggers in the internet marketing niche fall into. They all have other projects on the go and blog about their progress online in their spare time (like me). The content comes naturally beacuse they aren’t stressing out on what to write about – they simply write about their journey to become successful online. The good thing is, because content is all natural and unique, and truthful (hopefully), the readership begins to grow, more people link to your site and look at you as an authority and you become almost like a web celebrity. When all of this happens, the money starts coming in automatically. Soon other webmasters want to buy ad space on your blog, you’re getting approached by ad networks who want you to join them and the list goes on. Take a look at John Chow for example. His blog started off as a personal site where he would write about cars, food and travel. Eventually he began selling ad space and now makes over $30,000 a month from his blog. Not too shabby.

The point is, if you’re starting off in the blogging world only to make money, you should probably think of another way to earn it. It may be okay for a little while, but your full potential will come when you least expect it and you blog for reasons that are morally right.

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And I couldn't agree any less.

Another article I've stumble upon on his site is about the traits of being a good blogger. Earlier I mentioned there are a lot I couldn't agree on because most of them raves about the 'technical' side of blogging a.k.a money making. So here's another article which is summarized nicely by him! Is he just too cool or what? Hehe.

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I’ve been blogging for a while now and one thing I noticed while reading other blogs is that some of them suck. There – I said it!

It’s not hard to find a blog that has either died (that is, the author doesn’t update it anymore), provides the wrong information, has spelling and grammar mistakes or the theme itself makes you sick.

I’ve compiled a list of 5 traits that a good blogger should have.

Be Personal
A good blogger should provide insight and a touch of their personal side while writing. The information offered should not be recycled, but fresh and informative (especially on a marketing blog). A blogger should be responsive to their audience, be easily accessible, respond to comments and provide dialog that’s easy to make sense of.

Have a Personality
The blogger personality is a huge key when it comes to having your audience like you or hate you. This is where it gets tricky – you want to be somewhere between ‘liked’ and ‘hated’. You want to be hated enough to cause a little controversy and discussion amongst your readers, but likable enough that even those that hate you will come back to read more. Make sense?

Be Passionate
If you’re not passionate about what you’re writing about, it shows and your readers will know it. You shouldn’t have to struggle when writing a post – it should come naturally. If this isn’t the case, you’re writing on the wrong subject. Have fun while writing and don’t force yourself too much.

Post Pictures
Every now and then post a photo to go along with your post. It doesn’t have to be a photo of yourself (although you could do that too), but a photo related to whatever your post happens to be about. For example, I try to post at least one photo along with each post I make, but sometimes I don’t post any. I like to switch it up a bit.

Stay Focused
If your blog is about detailing cars, don’t write about your political opinions – it’s pretty straight forward. Most blogs I visit like to freestyle on the weekends and break a few of the rules. This is good because it gives the reader a chance to see what else you can write about. But remember, 99% of the time your content should match your title. Your readers were attracted to your blog in the first place because of its subject; try to keep their focus (and yours) as much as possible.

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So there you have it! I hope this will give you [specially my darling VogueU] a clearer picture to what blogging is all about actually, from my point of view that is. Thank you for the articles Mr Jacobson! :)

Cheers to more blogging people!

8 comments:

PearL said...

I read and re-read this post. One that rekindle the purpose of VU and made me strive to be a better blogger!

Thanks Naddy! Everyday we learn...from the YOUNG as well as the EXperience.

P

rasp said...

thx for this wonderful & insightful article...
insyaAllah will try to improve myself!

Moralle said...

Saya akan bekerja keras untuk menjadi blogger yg tegar.........ermmmmmmmmm bolehkah saya??????

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Mak Pah Vogue said...

mak pah is new to blogging so there's so much to learn. nevertheless mak pah agreed totally on being passionate abt ur write-ups.