This guest post is by Lisa Cash Hanson of Mompreneuer Mogul.
“Try to discover
The road to success
And you’ll seek but never find,
But blaze your own path
And the road to success
Will trail right behind.”
I’ve spent much of my life mastering the art of impersonations—basically copying a singer’s style and recreating that on stage. It’s what I did for a living before I became an entrepreneur and a new mother to my baby girl Matilda. I would study movements, accents, costumes and then replicate, much the same as an actor would when studying for a film role. I was a Las Vegas Impersonator.
I suppose, due to the fact that I spent so many years portraying other people, I now have a deep desire to never copy anything by anyone ever again. It is from that perspective that I share this blog post with you regarding your true writing voice.
No one’s as good at being you as you!
The Internet is filled with so many amazing writers and information. However if we copy those writers we will always be a poor copy instead of a promising original. The most valuable tip I have learned in all my years of impersonating is that no one is as good at being you as you are. So why should we copy any other blogger or their style?
I want to share some quick tips that I believe will challenge you to discover your true voice and at the same time help you to stand apart from the blogging crowd. If you apply these tips I know that you will tap into something really powerful. When you write from a place that’s real, then the traffic and offers will come. Then you will discover a creative flow that you probably never knew existed.
In order to be original you have to release all fear and anxiety and dare to try something new. Here are some things that may help you on your journey to becoming unique.
The They-may-not-like-me Syndrome
This is where the fear rises up that if we try something unusual and different a reader might not like us. Perhaps they will even stop following our blog.
Let me help relieve that fear for you. That will probably happen.
“Lisa, that is not inspiring,” you’re thinking. “I thought you were helping us?” I am. Listen. I was featured on the home page of Yahoo! not too long ago, and my blog blew up. Super-cool. Until I read all the comments. Super not cool. It was so bad that I wrote the post, ” The Best And Worst Day Of My Blogging Life” and I have to admit I whined a little. Basically I received a lot of backlash and it wasn’t all that great.
However a lot of great things came from that experience. I discovered the value of moving past negativity and pressing through. I no longer think “What if they don’t like me?” I understand that I can’t please everyone.
Decide on purpose to move past any negativity then launch out, be brave, and try something new and daring. You may find that more new people flock to your blog then those who leave. And in the words of a very wise man Dr. Seuss, “Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”
Be brave enough to be first
Your blog is your space. Just because you may not see an idea on someone else’s blog, that doesn’t mean it’s not a valid and amazing idea.
When I wrote Darren to do this guest post I really wanted to add a vlog. It’s part of my personality and my blogging platform. I could have talked myself out of it, saying, “I never see any other guest bloggers doing a vlog. Darren must not like video.”
But no. Instead, I simply suggested it and asked if it was possible along with my post idea. And the result? Obviously I did a guest vlog on ProBlogger, and I’m super thankful. The point is I was not afraid to ask. So be brave enough to be first. Ask and you may be shocked by what comes your way.
Many times we allow our fear of not being perfect to stop us from creating something beautiful. But we have to be gracious enough with ourselves to allow space to make a mistake and not hinder the creative process. “Have no fear of perfection—you’ll never reach it.” So said Salvador Dali.
You may think a confession has no place on a blog filled with tips about blogging. But I will tell you it does. I have no doubt the words I speak over my own life daily are what has opened many doors for my business and my blog.
Confess things like, “I am uniquely made.” “I am filled with creative and unique ideas.” “I am daring.” “I am bold.” “I think of posts that are completely original and help tons of people.”
By the way, yes I did say to Darren as I looked at his profile, “I will guest blog for you.” See how that works? It did take a few attempts, in case you were wondering. (A side note: a non-answer may just mean “not right now,” so make sure to try again.)
Laugh at yourself
I have a weekly vlog, and every Wednesday I share tips and questions from my readers. It’s far from perfect. One time my husband was watching my video before it went live and said, “Babe, you’re weird.” He said that because I made a mistake and then just laughed at myself and kept going, almost talking to myself on camera—but out loud.
I told him, “What they see is what they get. I’m real.” And guess what? I get weekly comments about how genuine I am and that it makes my audience laugh. That is much better than having a perfect, stiff video. So always remember to laugh—even if it means you may be laughing at yourself.
Look outside blogging platforms for original ideas
I’ve shared before that it is amazing to follow blogs like Problogger, CopyBlogger, Firpole Marketing and others. But if all you do is read those blogs one after another, how can you ever truly expect to get new motivation?
Sometimes you need to stop looking at blogs for your inspiration—even if it’s just for one night. In Las Vegas we have some really killer shows. My favorites are the Cirque De Soleil shows. One night of watching them, or a great concert, or a night of playing games with friends, could fill your head with some awesome new ideas for blogging. So try to get outside of the virtual world and into the “other” world to draw on some inspiration.
Care about design
I know that you are probably shouting “Content is king! Who cares about design?” True, content is the most important aspect of your blog, however if you change something in your design, you could be surprised how that will serve you. Maybe you could start a new trend. You’ll never know unless you try.
Who are you?
Do you really know who you are? Or are you a rehashed version of someone else on the planet who’s work you’ve read over and over?
Spend some time alone with yourself. Think about what makes you laugh, what makes you cry, what makes you mad, what makes you passionate—and include all of those things on your blog. Then your voice will shine through.
Remember, Celine Dion is a powerful singer but it would be super-boring if every singer sounded like her, no matter how beautiful her voice. Be yourself. Share a great gift with the world-yourself.
When it comes to matters of money
I know there are many tips on how to make money and how much to charge, but guess what? It’s your blog, and your business, and you have the ability to run it your way.
I have created unique ad campaigns and charged for guest posts differently than most. And people pay. I’ve received more money on some projects merely because I asked for it—and then I created such a unique experience for that person that they couldn’t go anywhere else.
Let your creativity flow, and you may find new ways of making money on your blog. If you are a food blogger you could do a PDF of a recipe and invite readers to download it for 99 cents. Or if you are a photographer and you have many pictures, you could create a private membership site where people come to use your awesome photos for their blog. The possibilities are endless.
The results of being your true you
Honestly you may feel a little crazy due to your new state of happiness. It feels good to be different.
You will soon learn that you get much more attention via social and traditional media by being unique. There will be a new spark that comes out of you, and that spark is contagious. People are drawn to others that are filled with life. It’s often referred to as charisma. So get that pumping and see what happens for you.
Many of us love to blog but we also love when some cash comes along with our blog. Who doesn’t like to make a little extra income? You will find that the more original you are, the more financial opportunities will come your way.
When I launched my blog it didn’t look like anyone else’s. Immediately I was getting offers for paid posts, and ads. Why? Probably because it looked so unique that it attracted business’s attention. When you are your true self, money will follow. And it’s a sweet feeling to be yourself and get paid to do it at the same time.
I hope that these tips give you a small glimpse into the world of originality. As I said in my video, there’s no one else on earth like you. Dare to be different you’ll see you will reap rich dividends.
Now don’t forget to test this out and share in the comments below what you’ve done to stand apart from the pack. I’m excited to see what you do.
Lisa Cash Hanson is the author of the “Get Famous The Most Amazing Mom Bloggers Resource On The Planet” and creator of the Blogs To Riches Club. Lisa was recently featured on Yahoo!, named Circle of Mom’s Top 25 Mom Tech Blog & Blogtrepreneur’s Top 40 Mompreneurs to follow on Twitter. She is the founder of Mompreneur Mogul an award winning blog where business and inspiration meet. Her weekly Newsletter is packed with tips for those who want to make money blogging and get media attention for their blogs.