“A brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.”—Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder.
This quote gets pulled out a lot by bloggers (I’ve used it three times in the last week myself) but I wonder if it might be time to give it a little more intentional pondering as we think about the brands we are trying to build around our blogs.
The brand of your blog is that lasting impression that people have of your blog. It’s the things people go away from your blog thinking—and, more importantly, talking about to others.
If this is the case, an important question to ask yourself as a blogger considering your brand is:
What do you want people to say about your blog?
Here’s a quick exercise that I’ve done recently that gave me a lot more clarity about what I’m building.
- Grab a sheet of paper, open a text document or mindmap, or go to a whiteboard.
- At the top write “What do I want people to say about my blog?”
- Spend ten to 15 minutes brainstorming answers to this question.
As you work on your answers think broadly about your blog. What do you want people to say about your content, the style you write in, your voice, the community and interaction on the blog, your approachability, etc.
Perhaps another way to ask the question is, “What words do you want people to use to describe my blog?”
Also pay attention to the feelings and emotions you want people to have while they’re on your blog. My suspicion is that feelings and emotions are a big part of a brand. Do you want people to feel:
- a sense of belonging
- content and happy
- intellectually stimulated
- that they’re not alone
- …or something else?
When I recently did this exercise for myself (I did it for my main two blogs), it gave me a lot more clarity about the types of brands I’m attempting to build. I hope that this, in turn, will help me communicate that to others, and actually make those goals a reality.