BarnumPT

Marketing Expert. Very professional.

When and Why Should You Start Your Own Blog?

The second question was answered as soon as I started writing the title. I was greeted with a small “tell a story…” and found your answer(s).

Why?

Because you have a story to tell and please, by all means, test our patience with your wisdom and knowledge.
I do want to make one thing clear before we continue. This will not serve as a how-to guide for blogs that will soon become home to “How to enable dark mode on Instagram” articles, but it may prove useful for such readers.
If that is your cup of tea I can respect your hustle but today, we will be talking about that story of yours. That one piece of work that you are proud of and want to share with the world.
So let’s hear it. How does it begin?
We have all been there. You wake up in the middle of the night and can’t find your phone. It can be frustrating right? Well, I have 10 neat gadgets for you that will help you solve this problem today!
Hold on there for a second “I can relate to your problem and also solve it in a jiffy” content creator. Do you really want me to believe that you have tried 10 different gadgets just so you could find your phone in the dark? 
On top of that, why did you pick a round number? Why wasn’t it 7 or 8? Didn’t you get bored when you figured out that the first ones actually solved the issue and you had no reason to look for more?

And let me top all of that with one more question.

Do you really feel like you convinced me that you care about this subject?
I don’t blame the people that will stay and read on but if you will excuse me, I will proceed to scroll over that filler content and click on all of those affiliate links.
I’ll make my pick based on the fake Amazon reviews.
At least they sound more honest than you.

Tip Number One

Make sure that you care about the subject.
If it feels like a task it will read like a task. 
Show me some passion God damn it!
Oh, don’t worry. We won’t stop there. I have to add some filler content as well so let’s read on and trigger even more writers that are reading this and getting those fingers ready for angry comments.
1. Flashy Flashlight
This one is the first one I tried. I was flabbergasted by the simplicity and slick design of this true marvel of technology. It uses a state-of-the-art lens to enhance the output of this 1000 Gigawatt led lightbulb that was disintegrated into fragments of atoms and molded in a vacuum just so it can fit into your pockets.
Your lyrical capabilities are stunning young Shakespeare.
True music to the ears of individuals with a fine taste for art and poetry. But could you possibly be missing something important while throwing these fascinating words like confetti at your educated and well-informed audience? 

Allow me to ask a few questions.

Did you know that you could be addressing a possible audience of 1.5 Billion people? At least that is how many human beings speak the language you are utilizing. I checked that for you because I care about you. 
Are they not entitled to know how to find a phone in the dark?
Not all of them have internet access, yes, but they will establish a connection one day and your evergreen content could become irrelevant.
Why would I think that? 
Here are some more questions:
How many of those people know the meaning of the word “flabbergasted”? 
How many of them can accurately pronounce it? 
You would be flabbergasted with the answer but you will have to do that research on your own.

Tip Number Two

If you aren’t targeting a narrow niche you have no need to make it hard to read. They didn’t come for brain exercise, they came because they are bored or curious and you are entertaining none of those needs.
Be honest and upfront about your opinions because your audience will hopefully value them at some point.
If that opinion you expressed about Flashy Flashlight was based on a review you found on Amazon, let us know. It won’t make you look like an asshole when I actually buy it and realize that 1000 Gigawatts is a bit of an overkill for a flashlight. 
If you tried it you would have known.
Now let us examine your second recommendation
2. GPS Wizardry Portable
This one was fun to use because I had no idea how cool GPS can be. It literally showed me in what corner of the room my phone was. I just had to connect it to the WiFi my phone was on, but I wasn’t sure so I checked on my phone and then pretended that I lost it again so I can see if this thing works. 
And it did! Yay!
You may envision your readers as gullible individuals but it will be hard for them to believe that GPS can track molecules in your body and send a live feed of the events in the form of a hologram.
If we missed a news update on the development of GPS technology be sure to share that information with us. We might find it interesting and thank you for that gesture.

Tip Number Three

I don’t care if you are writing about gadgets or nuclear physics. Whenever you present something as fact back it up with a link to the source. We might find something that you have missed and discuss it in the comments. 
Aha! An engagement hack. How fascinating!
Do not simplify things just for the sake of selling a story or an item. Honesty and attention to detail. Work on those.
We are ready for your next exhibit. And don’t be discouraged by these tips. We are only taking notes.
3. Phone Finder 3000
This one is very simple because you just press a button and it shows you where your phone is. Piece of cake!
Are you getting tired friend? Is the lack of words you are struggling to find bothering you?
500 God damn words… That must be a tough goal to reach.
Questions, questions…
What kind of button? You didn’t give us an image so we can visualize the device. 
Is it big?
Is it small?
Does it have a display?
Hello?

Tip Number Four

Think outside of the box. 
And don’t just read that as a smart motivational phrase, try to actually do it. When you are done with writing give that thing a few reads and leave that box already.
If it sounds generic it is generic. 
If it sounds like it is lacking information then it probably is.
Take your time and examine your work from the reader's perspective.
Always aim for perfection and know that you will never achieve it.
Now, what is this? A life hack?
4. Turn on the Light
Haha! Got you! This one still counts right?
I can feel the crippling depression inside your tired mind. But even though that frustration of wasting precious time on silly gadgets is getting to you, you are still able to focus on goals.
If it is a Top 10 list they want a Top 10 list they shall have!

Tip Number Five

Filler content and forced listicles belong on affiliate blogs that operate as a business. Do not let the products guide your thoughts.
Do not limit and blind yourself with goals and numbers. Give them the thing they came for, the thing you promised in the title, and they shall give back.
This is your blog after all. This is not a paid article you have to finish by Wednesday. There is no word count and no deadline.
You are done when you have said everything you had to say.
This is how we shall perceive you and based on your work, we shall label you as either an entertainer, an affiliate marketer, an SEO exploiter…. or as someone who has a fucking story to tell! 
Choose wisely because time machines won’t be here anytime soon.
I checked that for you as well because I still care.
Where did everyone go? There are still more items to examine and choose from.
6. Shiny Disco Ball
This one blew me away! Not only does it light up the whole room but it plays music that you can dance to! This one is the best and I can guarantee you that!
Get ready for more questions because I have them coming down the pipe.
You want me to wake up the whole neighborhood?
Where is all that energy coming from?
How can you guarantee that it is the best item on the list?
Did you run battery tests, stress resistance tests or any other test for that matter?
What kind of metrics were used and how did they produce the final results?
Is that guarantee based on your own experience? Are you willing to share more information?
Could it be that you are also forcing your self to the finish line and losing consistency?

Tip Number Seven

Did you see it? Well done!
Do not lose consistency and we need to talk about that tone of yours!
Take breaks and read it all the way from the top. Every time you encounter a block go back and read it again. From the top! 
Is the tone matching the pace of the article?
If it is a listicle why are you so over the top about that Disco Ball thing?
Are you overselling it just because you are getting more commission on the sales?
Could it be that you are compromising quality for easy monetary gains?
Most importantly, this isn’t tip number seven.
And you also skipped the 5th item on your list. 
Not only are you lacking consistency, but you are also lacking focus and interest in the subject. An interesting skillset.
Could you please pass me that list so I can read it properly to our already tired audience?
Khm…
7. Useless gadget with affiliate link
blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah…. blah… blah. A very cool feature indeed.
8. Useless gadget with affiliate link
blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah. It has something for everyone.
9. Useless gadget with affiliate link
blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah… almost there!
10. Useless gadget with affiliate link
blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah…. blah… blah. A very cool feature indeed but I love it because I had a flat tire once and this little thing helped me see in the dark. It’s nothing special but I can definitely recommend it!
You have made it to the finish line! Congratulations! 500 words exactly! That deadline must have been tight.
No seriously, I checked with WordCounter. It all adds up. The kid did a good job. But that’s not the best part. 
There is something about that last useless gadget that looks like a glimmer of hope.
…I had a flat tire once and this little thing helped me see in the dark…
That thing right there! I bet there is a story behind that flat tire! 
That is what we came for and you made us wait till the very end?
Did you confuse video entertainment with actually entertaining the reader with words? There is no visual wizardry here to maintain their attention while your generic sentences keep gracing their eardrums.
Every sound you made on that drum slowly became weaker and somewhere in the middle, where we all thought about leaving, you convinced us that we are making the right choice. 
We came to hear a story and you gave us a sales pitch. Wrong time and wrong place bud.
With that said, I can officially conclude that we have found the answer(s) to your second question.
When?

When you feel confident that you can tell the story the same way you would tell it to someone you care about.
When you start sharing your experience rather than your beliefs.
When you think you can stand behind every single word you have written.
When you have the correct answers to the questions we have asked here.
And finally, when you can say with 100% certainty that you have truly answered that question you used as clickbait in the title.
Fool me once shame on me.
Fool me twice I put your domain on the blacklist.

Tip Number who cares and the end of your agony

The conclusion to this story will be a mix of random thoughts that I gathered while preparing this article but didn't want to address in detail. Here they are:
Try to make a distinction between business and pleasure. Expressing your own opinions and sharing your own experience should be something you enjoy doing.
Don’t modify or change the content you wanted to include just so it fits the description of a product you are trying to sell.
Never write the same as you write for your clients. They paid you to write and they gave you a word count, tone, pace, and all those fancy numbers that increase efficiency and productivity. This is your personality and you don’t have to maintain it or pay attention to it. That’s who you are.
Try to do it your way. Even if you think that no one will read it, you can always submit it to Hackernoon and one of those poor editors will be forced to go through it and give you free feedback. 
Another free lifehack if you don’t mind pissing people off and ruining their day.
Don’t force that CTA. If they really care they will know what to do. Increasing the numbers doesn’t always mean that you are doing things right in the long term.
This isn’t a metrics game and you should remember that. I know that there are a lot of “tips and tricks” you can use to increase those numbers but this is your own work and things should come naturally.
Read it a million times if you have to and don’t press that publish button if you don’t feel like this is something that you would enjoy reading. 
Observe, examine, edit, delete… Whatever it is, change it until you feel like you did your best and always try to top that. That is how you improve as a writer and a person.
There is no guide that will teach you how to write. That is why it is called a guide.
Lastly, if you made it this far I would love to hear your opinions and thoughts on these tips. You are always welcome to start a discussion on Twitter or call me out for the flaws you found in the article. I will gladly try to prove my innocence.
And let me use a little FOMO on you before we part ways.
My Twitter account has exactly 0 followers at the moment of submitting this draft and you have an exclusive chance to be my first and very own Top 10 Fans. Too good to be true?
You can pass on that opportunity if you want… But don’t let me hear you say that you were not offered a sweet deal from old Barnum.
Disclaimer
The tips and guidelines expressed in this article are my own ways of doing things. They are based on my personal experience and I am not stating any of them as facts or proven methods. These are observations and questions that should help you improve and adapt.
And in case you are still here with that same thought you had 5 minutes ago, I just want to tell you that you are absolutely right! 
No one writes content that way and they also rarely use the term “flabbergasted”. 
You got me you bas**rd.

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