Is blogging right for you?
When people ask what I do for a living, I tell them “I'm a blogger…” and 99.9 times out of a hundred, I say it with a big smile on my face.
The other .1% of the time?
Well, I must admit that there are days when blogging (writing another blog post / article ) is the last thing I feel like doing.
Fortunately, those days are few and far between.
So, what makes blogging as a business right for me — and how can you tell if blogging is right for you?
Here is a list of questions that will help you assess whether blogging suits your personality and lifestyle.
Do you enjoy communicating with people? I mean really enjoy communicating. To foster relationships and increase readership, the most successful bloggers also respond to their blog readers' comments as well as engage people on Facebook, Twitter LinkedIn and other social media sites.
Do you have a topic that interests you enough to talk about on an ongoing basis? The best blogs are created around a central theme or ‘niche', i.e. an activity or topic of interest such as travel, food, parenting, personal growth, etc. Articles posted are almost always relevant to the central theme.
Do you prefer to write, speak or make videos? Blogs attract search engine traffic primarily through written text, so if you plan to share your messages via podcast or video recordings; online transcription services will be very helpful to you.
Do you enjoy learning new skills? The thought of learning how to install a WordPress blog and different themes (or appearances) can be intimidating for some people. Don't worry about it! Although I'm not technical by nature, I actually find ‘tweaking' my blog is a LOT of fun. AND you can always hire someone to set up your blog.
Are you a self-starter? No one is going to tell you to “get your butt in gear and start blogging“. You need to be self-motivated and self-disciplined to start a blog and keep working on it until it is successful – or hire people to do some the work for you.
Do you have time to invest in your blogging business? Until your blog is well-established with loads of great content and a regular readership, you should plan to post to your blog almost daily. This isn't as hard as it sounds. You can queue up posts for later delivery. In addition to creating content (articles, videos) for your site, much of your time will be spent moderating and responding to readers' comments as well as researching your topic.
Do you really want to be famous? OK, ‘famous' might be stretching the point a bit, but unless you blog anonymously, you will be putting yourself out there for all the world to see. Are you prepared to have strangers comment on your thoughts, actions and appearance? Do you want people to recognize you on the street? Or worse, on the beach? 🙂
Can you handle criticism? Although most of your regular readers will tell you how much they enjoy your articles, not everyone on the planet will agree with you — and at times they might even get nasty… which can actually be a good thing. Over the years, I've found that my tolerance for and ability to respond to the ‘nasties' has improved dramatically. No more blood pressure spikes. 🙂
Are you patient and persistent? Are willing to keep working at your blog even when it seems like no one is paying attention? Are you apt to have a fit if your site goes down temporarily? Persistence and perseverance are perhaps the most important characteristics of successful bloggers and entrepreneurs. Those who can work hard through tough times are those who invariably succeed.
Do you have a sense of humor? This could be your most valuable asset. There could well be times when things break or you've just made a total fool of yourself. “Stuff happens”. Your ability to laugh at yourself and keep going will shine through your work and people will love you – and your blog – that much more.
I believe if you answered “yes” to all or most of the questions above, you have the basic qualities and characteristics to be happy as a blogger.
That's not to say that if you currently lack initiative or bristle at your critics, that blogging isn't for you.
In fact, blogging might be the right activity to help you improve those qualities and learn new skills — and make some money in the process!
Are you a happy blogger? Are there other characteristics and skill sets that you can think of that good bloggers possess?
Comments, questions or suggestions? Please leave a comment below!