Power: the ability to act or produce an effect. (Merriam-Webster)
When searching for “power” images on Shutterstock for this post after I wrote it, two things were prominent: big muscles, and electricity. Those pictures were interesting, but didn’t quite grasp the concept of the kind of power I’m referring to for your blog. It was the picture of the windmill that caught my attention.
Wind has an incredible, sometimes even disastrous ability to effect change. Like water, it is one of the most powerful sources of energy we have. But power lying dormant is wasted. It has to be harvested and then utilized.
Considering your blog, ultimately, you want it to have some kind of power/ability to produce an effect – perhaps on your business’s bottom line, or your personal wallet, or maybe even your own sense of accomplishment. The potential for power is there – the sources exist – the key is in figuring out how to bring enough power to your blog to make a noticeable impact.
1. Inject Some Humanity
Have your ever written about something personal – something human – on your blog? For the most part, blogs are read by people (exceptions being spiders and spam-bots), and people are emotional. It would do you good to, every now and then, write about something that has a bit of humanity in it.
My pick: Are You Ready to Let the Girl Effect In You Shine Through? by Cori Padgett at Big Girl Branding. I love this post, not only because I support campaigns that have a mission to empower young women globally, but because Cori talks specifically about how even if you don’t have much money to give, you can use your blog to support a cause you believe in.
2. Communicate Universal Messages in a Unique Way
I’ve read (and continue to read) a lot of different blogs, especially blogs about blogging, social media, content marketing, etc. There’s a bit of a mixed message being sent. Some blogs will tell you to stick to your topic and wait for it to rain, and others will tell you to write about what other people are writing about because obviously it is working.
There are shades of truth in both of those camps, but my suggestion is this: find the universal message – the thing that most people would probably believe in/agree with/want to learn/need to learn – and stay true to your brand by communicating that universal message uniquely.
This means that you don’t have to rack your brain trying to come up with something very unique to talk about. Talk about something classic but in a unique way. The message itself will draw the crowd, and the personal branding will allow you to connect with people and it’s that combination that will make your blog better all around.
My pick: Copyblogger. People have been talking about good writing for centuries. No blog talks about writing like Copyblogger talks about writing, even when you consider that a large portion of their posts are written by guest bloggers.
3. Learn to Reinvent Yourself and Ideas
This goes along with number two closely, but the critical idea here is that at some point, you will need to reinvent yourself as a blogger. You cannot possibly think while the world changes one iota at a time around you every day, that somehow, you will be able to stay the same. That cannot be. You can either invoke the change or succumb to it, because change is inevitable.
Reinventing yourself as blogger or group of bloggers could involve many things, among them: a change in design, a change in team structure (adding/taking away), a change in underlying theme or message, a change in frequency, a change from monetized to non-monetized or vice versa, or even a change from open community to closed community.
There are really only two acceptable reasons to make drastic change – one is that it makes you happy, and the other is that it makes your readers happy. If you make a change that makes no one happy, consider reversing it.
My pick: The Art of Embracing Change, by Nadia Ballas-Ruta at the Think Simple Now blog. I consider this type of reading essential because your success with your blog isn’t going to be isolated from the rest of your life or your business. If you or your business is stressed, it will probably show in your writing, frequency, or in the way you relate to other bloggers.
One last thought: powerful blogs are products of powerful people. What are your thoughts on powerful blogs?