At its core, blogging is about wanting to be loved.
Before you roll your eyes, hear me out.
When you blog, you put yourself and your ideas out there for the world, and that means you want to be seen and heard. You want people to read your stuff and think, Wow, this chick is amazing. You want people to fall in love with you. (Feel free to argue with me in the comments if you disagree.)
I’ve never been the type to go after the guy all the girls wanted. In middle school, I picked the most nerdy, quiet guys to obsess about, because there was absolutely no competition.
But when you blog, you’re basically competing with the entire internet to get people to love you. And it feels really hard.
Just like you don’t have to get every man (or woman) to love you, you don’t have to get everyone on the internet to love you either. Just your people. The people who were meant to find you.
And here’s how to make them fall helplessly, hopelessly in love with you and your blog.
1. Really listen to them.
Have you ever been on a date when the guy actually listens to what you have to say, instead of going on and on about himself? It almost makes you fall in love on the spot. (At least I did. That’s one of my favorite things about my husband.)
You want to be the person that really hears what your audience is saying. And you become that person by finding them and listening to them. There are SO many ways to do this. Here are a few:
1. Facebook groups
Join them, actively participate, and PAY ATTENTION to what people struggle with. You can even be audacious and ASK them.
When I was just starting this blog, I went into a couple of my favorite groups and asked them what they struggled with in their blogs. So many people responded “being consistent.” And guess what? My posts on blogging consistently have been the most popular. (Shocking, right?)
Every once in awhile, I ask my readers to fill out a survey in which I ask them what they are struggling with in building their blogs. The insights I get from reading their responses are unbelievably helpful.
If you don’t have readers (or a mailing list), you can go back to those trusty Facebook groups and ask people to do your survey as well.
Actually talking to people is the most powerful way of getting to know them. (Shocking, right?) You can ask your survey respondents if they’re willing to talk to you over the phone, and you can straight out ask people you know in person or online if they could chat with you as well. I use a tool called Calendly to schedule the conversations.
After you’ve listened to your audience, show them you’ve listened by writing posts that directly answer their questions and speak to their concerns. When they see that you’ve not only listened, but acted on what you’ve heard, they will start to trust you. And trust is a foundation for love.
2. Define and refine your unique voice.
Even if you’re writing about topics that people are super interested in, they won’t fall in love with your blog if it sounds like everyone else’s. You need to craft your unique voice, your unique way of expressing yourself.
And it’s not hard. First, answer these 3 questions:
- Which adjectives do I want people to use when they talk about my blog?
- What type of place do I want people to feel like when they’re reading my blog?
- What words do I frequently use that can convey those adjectives/place?
Here’s an awesome “voice board” from one of the students of my Define Your Blog Voice course.
You can check out her blog here.
Then get to writing. Use your answers to these questions to guide you. And don’t afraid to be bold and different. No one falls in love with a copycat.
3. Be vulnerable.
That’s right. Show your true self. When I was in college, I dated this guy for one and a half years. I thought I loved him, yet I was COMPLETELY MISERABLE the entire time.
Why? Because he couldn’t allow himself to be vulnerable. He would never open up and show me that he needed me. It really sucked.
So…to be truly lovable, you have to show people that you’re human, and that you care, and that you need them just like they need you. That means being vulnerable. That means sharing your struggles and opening up about things that might be hard to write about.
Be vulnerable by sharing personal stories. Be vulnerable by acknowledging when you need help. Be vulnerable by showing your human side, even if you’re writing about marketing tactics.
Vulnerability makes you lovable. Truly.
4. Keep showing up.
The people I love the most are the people who I can count on NO MATTER WHAT.
The same goes for your blog. If you blog consistently, you show people that they can rely on you to be there.
You show them that you’re in this for the long haul. And you give them more and more opportunities to fall in love with you.
For more on blogging consistently, read this.
It may not be as scary as standing on the sidelines at a middle school dance, waiting for someone to ask you to slow dance with them, but blogging is about wanting people to want you. And to fall in love with you. Here are 4 ways to make it happen:
- Listen to your audience.
- Define and refine your voice.
- Be vulnerable.
- Keep showing up.