Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Apples & Oranges -The Difference Between Writing for Play and Writing for Pay!
There are as many different reasons for blogging as there are audiences.
For example, some blog to share their views with like minded readers. Others may blog to vent about office drama, bad bosses, and events of the day as a way of release. Many use it as a vehicle for sharing their creative works and building a platform.
Still there are others that merely like to "strut their stuff" before a virtual audience because it feels good to their ego. To each his own.
But, rest assured that regardless as to the motive, there's a difference between blogging for pleasure and blogging for pay. And those who fail to know the difference may fail to earn money for their efforts.
This realization came to me awhile ago, in reading the posts of a fellow blogger that was doling out advice in the form of a how-to.
She suggested that bloggers write for themselves, and not worry about what readers felt. Huh? Pursue your passion and forget the advice of "experts" she suggested.
Can I share a secret? And this is not to disparage her views in any way. She was just simply misguided.
That approach and fifty cents will get you about as far as the corner. Seriously. Of course, if your blog is simply recreational in nature, and it's for your family and friends, and a way to save on potential therapy. I agree; by all means let your hair down! Do you.
But, don't expect a career as a "pro" blogger where you'll be paid.
I liken this to cooking for yourself vs. being a professional chef. If you want folks to keep coming back for more, you have to serve it up right!
And I say this as a writer who started out blogging for pleasure, who has since then evolved into a "pro blogger" who has been paid to blog on everything from business blogging, to romance-related posts, to even blogging about jazz music. On the regular!
Here's what you need to know if you'd like to do the same.
1. Know your audience, and let that knowledge be revealed in the topics you address, your tone, and your language. Keeping them in mind keeps them coming back.
2. Stay on topic. If I must admit, when I visit some sites, I'm not sure of what the focus or objective is. One day it might be about food, the next day about dogs, the next day about celebrities. That's okay for a "personal blog" but not a professional one. Of course, unless it's a commentary blog.
3. Watch your language and how much you reveal. I did a recent post that elaborates on this point at Workawesome. com.
4. Take advice from those who have been successful in venturing the path you choose to pursue. To quote a recent comment I heard, "Everybody's got a voice. But not everybody deserves the microphone." Are you with me here?
5. Know that numbers matter. Particularly in the form of blog comments and visible followers. Here's why: If you show no ability to engage your own target audiences with your writing, it will be hard to convince potential clients that your writing will be a hit in marketing their site, product, or services either. Make sense? :-)
Keep these five tips in mind to build your blogging career and your bottom line.
IMAGE: Suvro Datta