Darren Rowse made an interesting point in his presentation. Bloggers typically fall into two categories. The first group tends to really pour themselves into their blogs. They only have one or two to which they are completely dedicated. The other group, however, usually has many more blogs, sometimes up to 30 or 40. They focus more on repeating the same formula of content, SEO, marketing, etc. to build a huge audience. So which approach is right? Are you going to be more successful as a blogger by being genuine on one blog or by robotically delivering content on 30 blogs? Darren Rowse believes that there should be a balance. It is possible to write from your heart and still do it in a way that is smart.
Several ways to blog from the heart include inspiring people, writing things on a personal level, and being playful. Just by being yourself and creating content you are passionate about you will naturally begin to blog from the heart.
On the other side of the spectrum is blogging smart. Darren went over several techniques he used to on his in the past. First, set goals. If you want your blog to turn into a business then treat it like one today. Second, know your readers. It will make it a lot easier to reach your audience if you know what moves them. Also, make sure you consider your branding and marketing. You need to figure out how you want people to see your blog and then actively pursue that. Another important thing is to know which hooks to use. Hooks are what keeps your readers engaged or “hooked” to your site. These include twitter, facebook, google reader, etc. You have to know what hooks will appeal to your readers and use them.
If you are trying to monetize your blog then you have probably already considered google adsense. While this is good in the beginning, Darren made the point that selling your own products is key. On his blog he started selling e-books like Problogger First Week of Blogging and Problogger Business Blogging Book which allowed him to build his brand and create long-term revenue streams.
The most important thing, however, is to experiment. You can’t be afraid to fail. By taking the best elements from both perspectives you will eventually find the balance between quality, genuine blogging and smart, efficient blogging.
If you want to watch Darren Rowse’s full session or any of the other sessions you can do so at Blog World Expo