Six! Yep, six years blogging. I don’t even know where the time has gone. Plus, I’m like a pre-OG blogger. And to be completely transparent, this is only the second thing in my entire life that I’ve consistently done. Well third if you count motherhood (but who gives up on that, insert duh emoji). Writing is something that I do every single day. Whether it’s a long oversharing Instagram post, or a 500 word rant on Facebook, I am always sharing my thoughts.
The number one question people ask me is, “how did you become so successful?” First off, how y’all know I am successful. That word is relative and depending on the day…but I will say that being successful is a state of mind that is only determined by you.
But when I look back at those six years there are a few mistakes that I made that maybe you don’t have to if I spill the tea! So here’s 8 mistakes you need to avoid when you start blog (or even if you’re blog is old, stop doing these things now!)
[tps_title]1. Not defining your target audience.[/tps_title]
In the beginning, I was just writing. I was writing everything for everyone. I thought that I could appeal to every single person in the world. I even wrote in third person so that you would think it was a team of us here at GIG. Fail number 84,078,219,381,974,819. Then I thought that my audience would find me. Fail number 417,183,741,874,281,741,807,201,749,210. While this is true, it took about 3 years for her to find me. Talk about time wasted.
Even though I have some readers of other races and ethnicity, my reader looks like me. I know this to be true, thanks to a reader survey I just did (you can take the survey here for a chance to win $100 gift card).
I learned that she’s Black! Something that I fought for a while. I told myself that in order to be successful I had to dial back on my Blackness. Gasp, that’s a lie! My reader is also close to my age, fairly tech savvy (or willing to learn) and she loves slaying her look. A few of my readers are bloggers but most are just 9-5 type women searching for the answers of life. I don’t have all the answers, but I got some!
Here’s what you should be doing…
Start by identifying the one or two topics you are going to write about. Example, I write about beauty and lifestyle.
Then decide who is most likely to read your work. Example, Black women who want to be entertained and educated read my blog. My reader, Keisha, she’s a little bougie at times, but trust, she is street smart. And while she is socially conscience, she cannot pass up watching a WSHH video. Keisha and I have a “judgement free” type of friendship.
This is creating a marketing persona. Creating a persona is putting a name and background to your customers. It’s like an educated guess of your blog readers.
Next, create content based on what she/he is most likely to read. Now that you are actually creating content, use words that are inclusive (like “you,” “we” etc.).
I’ve started doing polls and asking questions because that’s really the only way you can get to know your audience (once you have defined them). Once you’re aware of the goals, challenges and demographics of your audience, you can relate to them and write to them like the humans they are.