I started my first blog when I was 13 years-old, it was a birthday present to myself after months of admiring other bloggers and wishing I could be one of them. The only thing that was stopping me was the fact that kids my age in 2008 weren’t really blogging. I was so concerned about what my peers would think of me, but I had a passion for writing and website building that didn’t seem like it was fizzing out. With the encouragement and help from my mom I made a blog a few weeks before my birthday and of course named it “Fourteen Magazine”.
I didn’t know it at the time but starting that blog was the beginning of what would ultimately be my career. Now I am 22-years-old with a B.A. in journalism, a concentration in online/print writing, an entrepreneur, and still of course a very active blogger. Fourteen Magazine didn’t last very long because I honestly had no idea what I was doing.
I was writing post with no purpose, no general topic, theme, or audience in mind. This was a good and bad thing because I got to be completely creative and had no pressures. When I learned that people could be bloggers as a full time full scale career I was amazed and changed my mindset completely on how to manage a blog. I had to find my blogging purpose and find my blogging voice.
What is a “blogging voice?” It’s the style and tone of your blog, the overall feeling people get when they are on your site. Your blog can be conversation and casual or education and professional. It truly up to you. One of the greatest things about blogging is having complete creative control of your product.
Find your blogging/online voice is vital for you and your blog’s brand because it will ultimately determine who your audience is and if they’ll keep coming back. Think about “What is the theme?” and “What will capture my target audience?”. I sometimes put myself on the other side of it, and imagine myself as the reader. If that doesn’t work then I’ll ask my friends or family to honestly critic my blog post. Either usually help me get a better sense of what needs editing and improvement.
To continue to find your signature blogging voice I highly suggest finding and reading blogs that you actually enjoy and that are similar to your theme. And please do not steal post ideas from other bloggers, it’s okay to be inspired but ultimately we all create content and want to support each other. I run a fitness/wellness blog and often look at other wellness blogs for my own personal use but also for ideas. Blogs that I really like I share on my site on it’s own “Blogs We Love” page and also share on social media.
Lastly research, research, RESEARCH! Reading other blogs is part of research but thats just the foundation of it. Read books all about blogging and self branding, join blogging forums/communities , keep up with the latest marketing & SEO trends and tools, take online classes, or look for a blogging mentor. There is no such thing as doing too much research. I thought I knew everything about blogging until I picked up a book called “Born To Blog: Building Your Blog For Personal & Business Success One Post At A Time”. I learned tricks and tips that were so simple that I never even thought of. When when I applied them to my blog it helped me improve my quality and increased my sites views . I personally also really like using CoSchedule.com, BossLadyBlogger.com, and Lynda.com as well to brush up on my content creation skills.
I didn’t really find my style and blogging voice until I made my most recent blogs Twenties In Texas & Fit Chicks Texas. They are two different sites with two different themes and completely different voices, but they both represent me and my brand. But there’s always room for improvement. Only you know when your blog/site is exactly how you want it, keep working on it until it feels right and feels like you.