When people first start blogging, particularly with an eye to monetise, they often focus on a niche or specific topic, and spend their time providing value and being “useful” to their audience. But recently listener Dorothy asked my opinion about personal blogs, and it’s a question I’m frequently asked:
“I’d love you to talk about the “usefulness” or “value” of personal blogging. There has been a bit of a discussion about this lately on a few blogs.”
The Benefits of Having a Personal Blog
People usually want to know if there’s any benefit to having a personal blog as well as a niche-focused blog (as usually, but not all the time, personal blogs are harder to monetise). I think having a personal blog is incredibly useful, and I always recommend it to everyone, whether they want to monetise or not. I also think everyone should have a personal blog at some point and in today’s ProBlogger podcast I want to explain the reasons why I think it’s a great idea.
Having a personal blog does wonders for your writing and your enthusiasm, and can be the best way to explore, experiment and learn about blogging and how you want to be seen online. Not all blogs emerge fully formed, but often evolve over time as the blogger finds a groove and settles into it – partly what they love to share and partly what their audience wants to hear.
Having a personal blog will help you get to that juxtaposition of personal and audience satisfaction much faster than if you were blogging with a restricted niche or business.
It can also be a fantastic way to express yourself and to record parts of your life to reflect on later, and help you share and connect with like-minded people. Having a personal blog can be an incredibly enriching experience, and can often be a source of satisfaction, no matter what the motive.
But What About Usefulness?
It’s true that if a blogger wants to monetise, the advice is usually not have a niche, rather than personal blog. It is possible to monetise a personal blog but often those blogs started out as a niche, or end up morphing into one. In this episode I discuss the personal bloggers I know and how they make a living from recording their life online.
But either way, a personal blog is something you should seriously consider, and I actively encourage it.