Photo: Kristina B. | Fickr
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about my blog and why I continue to maintain it.
For the most part, this is because I’ve noticed some trends with my traffic here. Most of my posts about social media (such as those related to Northern Voice or to Social Media Week) tend to bring in spikes, while my posts about music (e.g. my post about Lights’ single “Toes”) tend to bring consistent traffic over time.
Go broad or go narrow, that is the question
I’ve also seen Jay Baer’s post a few weeks ago where he argues that when it comes blogging, it’s best to go narrow if you’d like more shares and subscriptions:
A broader focus creates more traffic because you have more types of Google bait in the water, and you are simply appealing to a wider variety of readers.
Broad Topics = more visitors, less sharing, less subscriptions
Narrow Topics = fewer visitors, more sharing, more subscriptions (Source)
Convince and Convert is actually my favourite social media blog, so I respect Jay’s views a lot. Given that I write about a variety of topics though, his post makes me contemplate whether I’m on the right path. Am I compromising shares for traffic?
Blog – why?
After giving it some thought, I think that there are four reasons why I blog:
- To establish thought leadership. I’ve learned a lot in marketing, communications and social media in the past 18 months (and still continuing to learn, by the way), and I want to share this to the world.
- To share my passion. Related to the previous point, but not all my passions are professional per se.
- To have fun. I love music. And concerts. And pop stars. I blog about these because they’re fun.
- To have a voice. I’m a better writer than speaker, and I can better express myself through this medium.
Authenticity VS Personal branding
The reason why I’m questioning whether I should have a niche ultimately comes down to the issue of authenticity and personal branding. I’m not saying that the two are mutually exclusive — but I do see how the two can contradict each other.
When I write about music, I’m more casual. When I write about marketing, I’m usually more formal. It’s not that I’m pretending in either one — it’s really just that the audiences for the two are very different, and the vernacular that each one requires is different.
I blog because I want to share my true authentic self to anyone who would bother to listen. Writing about the three things I love — even if they don’t necessarily compliment each other — is the best way to do that, I think. Subscribers, traffic, sharers : they’re secondary to authenticity as far as I’m concerned. So this blog will continue to cover marketing, food, and music. At least for now.