According to Wikipedia, there are over 250 million blogs on Tumblr and WordPress alone.
That’s a crazy number, right? When there are so many other blogs out there in the blogosphere, doing the same old thing as everyone else will get us nowhere. If we want to stand out from the crowd (and it really is one hell of a crowd), it is essential that what we are doing is either better than everyone else, or different than everyone else.
In 7 crucial mistakes travel bloggers make, I listed being unique as a key point in blogging. So how do you find what makes you unique?
Many of us tend to think we’re just plain and boring, but seriously, we are all very different from one another. We have different skills, different interests, and different personalities, and we need to shout this out to the world.
Here is a guide to being unique, including 5 exercises to help you discover what makes you stand out. Check out the printable worksheet I’ve made (in A4 or US Letter) to help you define your uniqueness!
1. Write down what you’re good at
What activities do you kick ass at, or what do you enjoy doing? It doesn’t have to be in relation to blogging. The point here is to brainstorm and get some ideas flowing of all the skills you have.
Example: My list consists of design, photography, cooking, crafts, decorating, planning events, planning travel, and writing.
Being my weird self in Bratislava, Slovakia
2. Write down your personality traits
Think of some words that describe you as a person. If you have trouble – ask someone else to think of some words to describe you. What we want to do here is find the traits that make up who you are.
Example: I can be described as ambitious, persistent, passionate, creative, original, colourful, excited, and organised.
3. Pick a few skills that you can combine with blogging
There are endless ways to incorporate what you’re good at with blogging. Look at your skills list from step 1 and pick a few that you think you could use.
Example: I have photography and graphic design in my list so my posts feature a lot of my own images, and I use my design skills in both my website layout and post visuals to draw people’s attention. By doing this, I have something on my blog that no other blog has or could possibly have – my design style and my original photos!
Being colourful in Sydney, Australia
4. LISTEN AND RESPOND TO YOUR READERS
Readers will often tell you what they like about your style, or tell you what they want to hear about next. If they’re commenting about how much they love those photos you took on a nature walk last weekend and or they want to hear more about how you managed to fly between 4 continents in a month, then you should take note that they think you totally rock and start posting more on those subjects.
Example: I’ve noticed the fact that I’m Australian makes my blog unique because most of my readers are in the US. You guys seem to love hearing my Australian travel tips and stories, so I’ve tried to write more posts on Australia while I’m still in the country (only another 3 months, peeps!). I also write in international English, so I guess that makes me unique too.
Rockin’ out in my red coat in Bicheno, Tasmania
5. CREATE A COMMON THEME OVER YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE
Now that you have an idea of some things that will make you stand out, apply it to everything by branding your blog. You can create new categories of posts, edit your header image or bio, update the photos you use, or change your writing style. There are endless possibilities for applying your unique style to your blog.
Your personality traits from step 2 can also be reflected in what you do. They should come across in your choices of what to share over social media and the way in which you comment on other people’s posts.
Another idea is to create a trademark that consistently pops up over time. Mine seems to be my red coat that I wore throughout the entirety of my Europe trip and through some of winter here in Australia, meaning it shows up time and time again in my photos. This was kind of an accidental trademark but still, it’s a common theme in my posts! I know of other bloggers that have done this with a hat that they wear all the time, or with a particular style of photography.
And one last thing – make sure you continue to be unique by thinking of ideas, always. Keep a notepad (or a to-do list app on your smartphone) handy at all times to write down ideas you have.
I sometimes get inspiration at really odd times, like when I’m walking to the grocery store or when I wake up in the middle of the night. You just never know when creative inspiration will hit you, so make sure you’re prepared for it.
Now fly free, my pretties! Go out and be you, and show the world what a unique person you are.
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