How are you supposed to do this? I’m trying to take my writing (and marketing), and turn it into a paycheck. It’s not easy! Thankfully, there are plenty of networks where even low-key influencers like myself (if you can call me that) can get exposure with other brands. Obviously there’s ad revenue as another possibility, and a dozen other ways to make a few bucks doing what I do. But it all brings up a very difficult set of questions.
I can’t say I have the answers nailed down. If anyone has suggestions, I’d be glad to hear them! As I work through this process of becoming profitable through my own brand, I have to specify what in the world my brand is. Then, where’s the balance between my voice and interests, and the promotions I need to make?
To put myself in a box, I’m a motivational and self-improvement blogger. I tend to focus on staying positive and the fact that anyone can achieve just about anything they could possibly want. But so many people do that! How am I any different? How can I stand out? What makes me unique, and keeps me from being just a commodity?
These are all questions I’m trying to answer for myself, and I think they’re necessary for anyone trying to market their personal brand.
I have to discern how they align with my own goals and character. But the biggest predicament for me right now, through my eyes, is this. A rule of thumb in blogging is that people talk about themselves when they have nothing else to say. That’s true! It’s easy to talk about yourself all day. It’s difficult to keep coming up with ideas that add value to your audience. I’m sure others have said this before me, but I tend to say, “If you only talk about yourself, you won’t have anyone to tell.”
On the flip side is the fact that viewers want brands to be personal. They’re looking for character, for a voice that doesn’t seem like just another guy spouting off something he saw in Inc. Consumers want real. They want candor. Consumers want to engage and keep up with people and brands they can relate to. All of this involves being very personal.
This is something you learn in marketing, but it’s also what you see in practice. My best performing posts tend to have a combination of (subjectively) insightful tips and personal experiences. The only problem is that I do this unintentionally. When I try to recreate that sweet spot, I inevitably blow it.
I’m trying to make the jump from hobbyist to entrepreneur. It’s difficult. Not because the work is so incredibly hard, but because there are so many questions I know I have to answer soundly if I hope to keep any consistency going through this major change.
I need to find the balance between being personal and educational. I need to find a niche voice that will stand out from everyone else doing something similar. And I need to be prudent with what offers I end up taking, so I can remain consistent with the brand and character I ultimately want to uphold.
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