How To Win as a Blogger
Photo by Olav Ahrens Røtne on Unsplash. Design by the author.

Of course, being a newbie, you would aim to be at the top. You want to win as a blogger. Don’t you? But you will kill your chances pretty fast if you commit the same mistakes as everyone else.

Don’t try to reach the peak by dropping down from your high heaven. That’s how you kill yourself on the impact. Instead, you get a much stronger footing if you build your way from the ground up.

Here, let me break it down for you.

Why You Won’t Win as A Blogger

It’s not 2002. Gone are the days when you could share your life and passion with the world, and advertisers would shower you with money.

Today, 4.4 million blog posts are being published every single day.

Besides, to your audience, you are nobody. To them, you are just an addition to the noisy crowd of online h̶a̶c̶k̶s content creators fighting for their attention.

So, no!

Writing whatever you want, hitting the publish button, and waiting for the audience to show up, isn’t that good of an idea. Why so? It’s because 31 million people are doing the same in the U.S. alone.

So if you want to cut the line and move your way up (fast), you must have something better than what everyone else has — blind work and hope.

You will need the mindset of a cutthroat entrepreneur.

How To Win as a Blogger by Playing as an Entrepreneur?

Whenever a reader clicks on your writing, they say no to other articles. Now, the question is, “why would they do that?”

Not, “What do I get out of it?” or, “How fast do I get something out of it?”

The most important question you should be asking yourself as a blogger or online writer is, “What’s in it for them?”

And the best way to figure it out is to know

Who they are: know your market

Do you think running a business is all about money? Think again!

There’s a reason why most people who chase money end up desperate, dead broke. It is because they are missing the point just by a little few thousand miles. I learned this from M.J. DeMarco:

Most people are broke and remain broke because the money scam has made them perpetual chasers of something that cannot be chased — it can only be attracted by offering perceived value.

What is perceived value? It is the value that the market attaches to you. You make money according to the value of your services perceived by the consumers.

So if you want to up your perceived value, you have to, in DeMarco’s words:

Make a freaking impact and start providing value! Let money come to you! Look around outside your world, stop being selfish, and help your fellow humans solve their problems. In a world of selfishness, become unselfish.

The same goes for blogging or online writing. If you want to make it big, you have to hit the right nerve with your audience.

You can’t win as a blogger if you don’t even know who they are.

So the first thing you need to figure out as a newbie blogger is:

• Who are the people that will benefit from your work?

• Who are the people you want to come to you and thank you for your work?

Here’s how to do it.

What do they want: know their problems

It’s often a good idea to backtrack your target demographic from their problems.

The best way to do it is to chase their

Fears/frustrations: What keeps your reader up because they’re worried? What bothers them the most? What’s their deepest pain point and most pressing problem?

Hopes/aspirations: What does your reader want to achieve in their lives? What does their ideal life look like? What are their biggest and most audacious goals?

Now, the next step is to figure out what you are good at.

If you are naturally good at something that other people can benefit from and manage to pair it up with good writing, you will move far ahead of desperate weirdos trying to game the algorithm.

And if you think you don’t have anything to offer, don’t worry. You can always learn your way up the ladder. 

Do that, and you will never run out of relevant topics to work with.

How to get their attention: offer a solution

Up until now, it was all about planning the winning product. But that’s not enough.

You have to make it marketable.

You have to make it relatable.

Most importantly, you have to make it irresistible.

You have to do all that, without being a sleazy snake-oil salesman.

That’s quite a balance to maintain, isn’t it?

You can do it. Understand this. Packaging your content well is nothing like packaging a product. In fact, more like teasing a movie.

Here, your headline and opening lines function as the trailer.

Show your audience what they are getting without giving away too much information.

And the best way to pick their interest without overselling is to tell them what you will help them with but conceal how you will do it.

For example, when I wrote an article on meditation, here’s how I formulated a clickable headline without making it clickbaity.

Problem: Most people struggle to get started or stick to meditation after a while.

Solution: Use both positive and negative motivators to strengthen your intent, replace “empty your mind” with “focus on your breathing,” make your surroundings relaxing, and lastly, focus more on consistency than duration at the beginning.

Headline: The Easiest Way To Start & Stick to Meditation Most People Don’t Know About

Now, if you notice, the tail of the title packs an exclusivity factor. But you can’t use it anywhere and everywhere.

How to build credibility: deliver on the promise

Your product has to deliver on its promised value after the purchase. If it doesn’t, your business becomes a scam. And you lose credibility.

The same is true for a blogger.

When you are using clickbait, you can make people make click-on work. But if they leave empty-handed, they will never return.

Believe me. That’s not the reputation you want.

If you want to build the trust factor, you have to more than deliver on the curiosity gap from your headlines.

For example, when I used the “most people don’t know about” part in the title, I only did it because most people genuinely go for thoughtlessness while meditating. 

Not only that.

But I also had a better, more scientific alternative that has worked wonders for me.

So, yes, you have to do the work and know the things you are talking about. Plus, validating your anecdotes with external research goes a long way too.

How to keep them coming: amp up the production

For many bloggers, it’s a dream to keep their readers engaged till the very last word.

But that’s not how businesses work.

A single sale isn’t good enough.

For an entrepreneur to thrive, there must be a base of loyal returning customers. As a blogger, you can do it by exposing your market to the constant flow of your quality content.

No. It’s not quality vs. quantity. It’s achieving high quality through high quantity.

Here’s what the cycle looks like:

The more you write, the better you get. → The better you get, the more problems you solve for your audience. → The more value you provide for your audience, the more they will trust you. → The more your audience base engages with your content, the more valuable you become to the market.

Here’s what you need to know if you want to win as a blogger. Desperation is the poison. The more desperate you get for smaller and more immediate results, the further you will push yourself from building something more meaningful and lucrative.

It might sound counterintuitive, but if you want to make money forget about money. Chase problems and market gaps instead.