Figuring out what to write about can be frustrating, especially because there are already so many great blogs out there.
The trick is to better understand why some blogs succeed and some fail. I have spent some time delving into this topic, and I have found a few key things to help get you started with finding what can set your blog apart from others.
Find your passion.
When I began writing, I didn’t know where to start. I felt overwhelmed with the number of blogs out there. There are blogs written by experts, blogs that are well put together, and blogs that are engaging, with an equal number of blogs that are quite the opposite. As I poured through these pieces trying to find where I would fit in, I began to notice a pattern.
When the writers were passionate, I could feel it, and that made me want to come back and read more. When the writers came across as unenthused, I found myself bored and ready to move on, sometimes feeling annoyed that I wasted my time dredging through fluff. So, I thought about what it was that drives me, what makes me happy, and what requires no energy to get me excited about writing. For me, that’s my rescue Mustangs, and the incredible experience it has been to take two wild, untouched horses and get them to a point where they could be therapy horses. These are my first horses, so needless to say, there was a lot of learning to do.
Become aware of experiences that support your blog.
While exploring what sparks your natural curiosity, begin thinking about relevant moments that can become supportive details to your blog. Imagine sharing these stories, observations and new insights with a close friend. If your tale is too mundane to share with a friend, it probably will not be a big hit on your blog, so be mindful of what you decide to put out there. Simply being cognizant of what you are interested in writing about can ignite inspiration within you and jumpstart your creative process.
Start recording your observations in your natural voice.
Whether you’re in school or at work, there is typically a certain expectation when it comes to how you are supposed to communicate, and for many this goes against their natural style of expression. This type of forced style can be difficult to shift out of. It can be incredibly helpful to begin writing and sharing your stories in your everyday conversational voice. Experimenting with different ways to share the same story can help you identify which one reads as more compelling and natural. Your voice is unique, and your blog should convey that.
The more you try to fit in with similar blog styles, the less your blog will stand out.
Connect with your reader.
When you think of your ideal reader, who comes to mind and what are they most interested in reading about? The best way to connect with your reader is to first identify what it is that your blog is trying to express. The best way to figure out the what is to ask yourself why you decided to write about this in the first place. For me, I have always been interested in sharing the story of my horses and my experiences with them throughout the “gentling” process. With the abundance of information about ways to train your horse this way or that way, I had to think of something that would get the reader’s attention.
Which headline sounds more interesting to you? My Experience Adopting Two Mustangs, or From Abused Wild Mustangs to Therapy Horses who Help Heal Those with PTSD. Remember, descriptive language in the headline and within your blog helps the reader vividly picture what you’re sharing and feel more connected to you, the writer.
Evaluate if your area of expertise is unique enough to stand out.
When you begin your blog, take some time to research what other similar blogs are out there. In this way, you will be able to see what your blog is up against. When looking up “horse blog” on Google, a myriad of different types of blogs pop up. Some are focused on training and competition, while others are focused on the owner/horse relationship, or horse health. The ones that stand out to me offered a captivating look at the given subject and quite often incorporated the horse and human relationship. You have a one-of-a-kind perspective, so be specific about what it is that you will be sharing. When I started off writing, I wanted my niche to be rescue Mustangs, but I quickly learned how important it is to find the niche within your niche. For me, that meant writing about my horses from the perspective of new horse owner and mental health professional, with my target audience being other mental health professionals. Remember, the more specific you are, the less likely someone else is writing about the exact same material, which over time may lead to you becoming the go-to expert in your chosen niche.
Blogs on the same topic that you are interested in writing about will probably always exist, so remember to write about something that makes you feel invigorated, and do not be afraid to be very specific with your niche. The more unusual your niche is, the less likely it is that other blogs will be covering the same topic. Through practice, you will find your natural voice, and with that comes more compelling writing, which ultimately attracts more readers.
We’d love to know how you discovered the niche within your niche, and how long it took you to find it? How challenging was it for you to find your natural blogging voice? How did you make your blog stand out from blogs who cover a similar topic?
Gabrielle Applebury is a Marriage and Family Therapist intern, with a specialty in working with those who have experienced trauma. She is also a freelance writer who specializes in breaking down complex topics into easy-to-read pieces. Along with her husband, she has adopted three dogs, two cats and two horses.
Now what? Join the discussion!
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