When Creating a Personal Blog, a Little Originality Goes a Long Ways
I had finished my work early last night and was surfing around, looking for nothing in particular, when I noticed a steady and undeniable trend.
There are literally DOZENS of sites that have the same look and feel as that of Johnchow.com.
I'm talking everything is the same. The same car photo at the top of the page. The same style of layout. The same types of topics (some people even took it a step further and described their recent dinners out AND took pictures of the meals. Are you kidding me?)
I know what these people are doing. They hear that John Chow is making $30k a month, basically talking about nothing in particular, and they want to emulate him. "Hey!", they think, "If he can make $30k a month talking about what he had for dinner last night, so can I! Where's my camera? Let's hit McDonald's!"
The thing is, if your blog lacks originality, then no one will want to read it. Why would they? You are just straight copying someone else's idea for a blog. I don't care what John Chow had for dinner the night before at the best of times - I certainly don't care what some anonymous John Chow wanna-be had for dinner.
If you want your blog to ever become successful, then you need to find ways to make it original. You need your own personality and voice to shine through in each and every post. There are literally millions of personal blogs out there; you need to find your own way of shining through.
Pick a topic that you are knowledgeable in and write about that. Try to add some value to the user experience. If you are an expect in real estate investing, then write about that. People will love it and will start to visit your blog daily. If you have done really well in the stock market, then include some pearls of wisdom that you have learned along the way that you think could be helpful to others. This is how you will start to build your traffic. This is the part of the equation that many people forget when they start writing about what they had for dinner the night before - you need a steady and loyal readership BEFORE you start writing about topics like that. If people don't care about you, then they certainly won't care what you had for dinner the night before.
I guess I was just stunned at how many copy-cat sites there were out there. These sites were all pretty much about nothing. I left these sites almost immediately as there was absolutely nothing of value that would force me to bookmark the sites.
If you want to generate a readership, then create value for your readers and give them a good reason to return to your site on a daily basis. Here are a couple of sites that I believe do a very good job in providing quality, useful content to their readers:
Cash Tactics is a very, very good site. I just came across it this weekend, and I have read pretty much every post on the site. If you are into affiliate marketing, then you pretty much have to read this site.
Filed under: Making Money Online | General Knowledge