“Add value to your readers” is one of the imperatives of blogging. It’s vague, counterproductive at times, and difficult to implement.
“Be original” is another sacred rule of blogging.
For your content to stand out, it’s got to add value to your readers and say something that no one’s ever thought about.
In other words, it seems like an impossible job.
Well, what if I were to tell you that you only have to focus on adding value to your readers.
Here’s why and how.
Your Article Is Your Product
It seems most bloggers tend to forget that running a blog is the same as running a business.
I know what you are thinking.
“But I am not charging folks any money to read my articles.”
Yes, but you are asking them to give up on something much more precious than money: their time and attention.
And this means your article is your product, and your readers are your customers.
And you know that terrible, terrible cliche: “the customer is always right?”
In other words, you need to do everything in your power to provide your readers with the best experience possible, to offer them quality content.
You can blog about what you want, but know that certain ways of writing and subjects aren’t as appealing as others, so don’t whine when you see that heartbreaking zero next to your followers.
You can be authentic, unique, and sincere, but in order for your articles to add value, you must do one of these three things.
Your Article Has to Entertain
People love to be entertained. Life can be boring, even painfully so. People want an escape from that. If your writing provides it, people will spend their precious time on it.
Tell stories, but tell stories that make people laugh, cry, or both at the same time. When you’re done writing, read over your work as an objective viewer.
Would you be entertained by your writing if you were a stranger? If you’re honest with yourself, you’ll know when the answer is “no.”
Your Article Has to Educate
How-to articles are popular for a reason. People like learning new stuff. If you can help people improve an area of their life they’ll appreciate, trust, and engage with you.
You add value by teaching others how to do something, sharing with them what works and what doesn’t, and letting them know the experiences that shaped your step-by-step guide.
Make your readers better for having read your work and they’ll become loyal fans.
Your Article Has to Inspire
Ephemeral as it often is, inspiration lifts people up from their darkness, gives them hope, and every once in a while, instills lasting change in your readers.
An inspirational post is this: a blog post that makes readers go, “Oh, yeah, so it’s possible.”
You inspire others when you show them that they too can become great at something, that they can grow through whatever storm they’re going through.
If You Manage to Write Articles That Accomplish All Three of These at the Same Time…
The pros, the bloggers we all admire, do all three at once with almost every single post they publish.
Their writing style is what others call entertaining, they teach others something about a certain topic or skills, and they inspire people to take action upon the information they have shared.
It’s an empathetic and honest way of sharing ideas that are worth implementing.
It requires that you understand both the similarities and the differences between you and your readers.
Some may have trouble taking action on the steps you provide, and you must let them know that that’s okay, and provide them with an alternative method.
A bit of self-deprecating humor also helps. A lot.
You can master the art of blogging as long as you purposefully aim to add these three ingredients into every single blog post you write.
But Your Blog Is Also About Your Own Needs and Desires…
At the end of the day, you are choosing to share your thoughts and ideas with the world because it has a positive impact on your own life.
But at times you will be forced to make certain sacrifices; sometimes you have to compromise what you want in order to write about what your readers want to read.
It’s All a Balancing Act
The truth is that writing only about what readers want to read oftentimes makes for a lousy blogging experience.
Also, you run the risk of hating the topics so much that you won’t be successful anyways…
The truth is that you need to write about topics that inspire you, motivate you to give 110%, but do it in such a way that your readers are more than glad to offer you their time and attention.
And you can only do this by setting the following main goal: to add massive value to your readers.
Massive Value Leads to Originality
The only way I know of to become original (and an authority in your field) is to focus on adding value to your readers.
It’s as simple as that. It’s as difficult as that.
The more you focus on providing valuable insights, in helping your readers achieve a goal or just solve the problem of boredom by entertaining them, the more original you become.
You begin to think outside the box, you force yourself to connect seemingly unrelated dots.
Get a real understanding of your readers.
What is it that they want to read?
What are their biggest problems that you could solve right away?
What is some piece of information they are desperate for, and only you can provide?
Figure these things out, and then give them to your readers… and that’s how you will slowly build a unique blog.