Type A Parent Conference 2011 just ended tonight. It was a pumped and loaded fun 3 days!
I want to share briefly what I learned at this conference. And I learned more than simply that I have a cute baby with the fattest cheeks and thighs EVER. (even if that was the most common thing said to me all weekend).
Rock What Ya Got
You are really good at something – what is it? Everyone has a talent. Are you a technical writer? A creative writer? A photographer? A baker? A humor writer? Hone your skill! Do it with passion and enjoy your blog. Find out what you love to do and then get really good at it. Do you know how to find bargains? Share them with your readers and use affiliate links. For me, I am a writer. I have a love affair with words and telling stories. I am going to refocus my blog on my writing (and my new found love of photography).
Make yourself known
Bloggers, you need to know social media! Educate yourself about how to build a following on facebook, twitter and get connected on LinkedIn. Google is my best friend. I research “top Facebook Fan Page Apps” and “Engaging on twitter” and then I share what I learn on this blogging basics series. Sadly, my Facebook Fan Page is lacking. I am working on that next. Are you feeling overlooked? The secret the “big bloggers” know is how to network. They are friends with other bloggers who get gigs and share with each other. Make friends. Go to conferences. Get involved in online communities. Twitter, facebook and linkedIn are a blogger’s best friends.
You need to focus on your own talents and strengths and don’t compare yourself to others. So what if she got a huge thing to review or got paid to put up a press release and you can do it better? You know your blog rocks and you will get the next one. The best thing you can do for your blog is continue to make it better without putting it up against another blog as a measuring stick.
You also need to focus on your strengths. This is where a strong niche can be so valuable. Yes, you can write about everything under the sun and be a “general life blogger” but if you have a passion then hone in on it and really put yourself into it. Make your blog all about it! Brands will notice. Sometimes, a brand will want to work with a blogger that is influential in a particular niche vs. someone with loads of traffic but no real focus.
There’s no place like home
Make sure your location is easy to find. Brands are starting to see the value in locally influential bloggers. On your twitter profile, put your state. In your meta tags, put your state and/or nearest metro area. Brands google and twitter search for locations they want to market to.
On another note, reach out to local businesses. Don’t just offer reviews and giveaways either. Offer social media consulting, copy writing, advertising! If you write about your local market often and are involved offline too, the local chamber of commerce will want to work with you to help them get on the “internet map.”
So now I am all pumped! While I will continue to offer reviews and giveaways, I will make sure to pour more energy into a local Kansas focus and share more stories with you. Storytelling is a part of my heart!
What do you love about blogging? I’d love to hear!