Have you ever started reading a blog or article, come across a typo or spelling mistake and thought “this person is clearly an idiot” and stopped reading? Probably not and if you have, have a word with yourself. People aren’t perfect, websites aren’t perfect, and pints aren’t perfect. I should know about the last one because I was a barmaid for 10 years. People rarely expect perfection, even when they’re paying good money for something. Human error is a fact of life. When it comes to blogging, what readers really want is information, opinion, advice, original thought and fresh perspectives.
So many people struggle with perfection paralysis and never post that blog they’ve written or get around to writing it because they are too afraid of getting it wrong and what other people will think.
Here are my top tips for getting over yourself so that you can start marketing your business and letting your blog do the work.
- Write blogs that serve your strategic goals.
That sounds boring doesn’t it. Bear with me. Remember why you wanted to start blogging in the first place. What were you hoping to achieve? A bigger audience, more traffic to your website, raising the visibility of your brand, a blogging award? Probably not the last one. Some of the most popular blogs are written by people with dyslexia. Mrs Constance Hall blogs and posts regularly, she has an enormous online following and is even currently starring on Dancing With The Stars in her home country. Constance Hall can’t spell to save her life and she doesn’t give a single shit and neither do her followers. They don’t read her blogs because they appreciate the beauty of her prose or her grammatical excellence, they follow her for the message, for what she stands for. Mrs Hall’s opinions reflect her values and principles and resonate with her audience, which is hundreds of thousands of women across the world. What do you stand for? Blog it.
- Write like you talk
Another reason for Constance Hall’s popularity is because she writes like she talks. Blogs are a great bridge between you and your potential clients. Speak informally as if you were having a conversation. Draw your audience towards you with a tone of familiarity and approachability.
- Show your personality
I’ll never forget when i was teaching, my students were doing a Maths test. The questions asked pupils to “show your working” one of my students had drawn a stick man with a pen and arrow pointing to the stick man saying “me working”. It cracked me up and I just had to share it.
Show your personality in your writing. Your ideal clients will be attracted to what you put out. In order to have a consistent online persona it’s quicker, easier and more powerful to just be yourself. Imagine if you went on a date with someone you had been chatting to online for quite a while. They are funny, warm and considerate in all their messages. When you meet them in real life, they are cold, distant and formal. You’d be disappointed wouldn’t you. I’m not suggesting that you flirt with or date your clients, what I’m saying is that if you are authentic and stay true to yourself not only will you be happier but you’re clients won’t be confused about who you are. The people who don’t like your content and your message won’t like you in real life and why would you want to work with people who don’t like you? The best thing you can be, is you.
- Edit your blogs or articles BEFORE you post them
The quickest way to avoid being publicly embarrassed is by editing everything before you publish it. Reading your blogs out loud will help you make sure it makes sense. If you can get someone else to proof your work all the better. The brain tends to skip over and not notice missed words and spellcheck doesn’t pick up words that are spelled correctly but in the wrong place. Ever noticed how auto-correct swaps fat for eat? Also where and wear. My husband proof reads a lot of my stuff for me and loves going over it with his little red pen, he always adds the words I’ve missed out. Hubby has saved me from looking stupid more than once.
- Blog consistently
The more you do something the better you get at it. Practice, practice, practice. The more you blog the more comfortable and confident you will get with publishing your work for the world to read. Perfection paralysis is a real thing and the best way to overcome it is by taking action. Experiment with topics and format. Mix up your content by alternating information pieces, with “top tips” or “how to’s”. Write some opinion pieces and throw in some personal stuff too. Share a bit about your backstory, who you are and struggles you’ve faced in your own journey. Find out what works for you and for your audience. Most importantly just get on with it.
One of my main mantras is “persistence not perfection”. If you keep trying you cannot fail. Perfection is intimidating and not taking action in the pursuit of perfection will hold you and your business back.
If you would like to learn more about blogging or just want me to write the bloody things for you I provide 1-2-1 blogging tuition so you can write confidently for your business or I can just crack on and do them for you. Feel free to get in touch if you’d like some help.