6 Techniques for Adding the Human Element to Your Blog
Like it or not, blogging is intensely personal. No, I’m not talking about LiveJournal (is that even around anymore?) style blogging where you go over every exhausting detail of your day. I’m talking about the kind of blogs you and I write and read. Just because they aren’t about us doesn’t mean that there’s not a human side to blogging that attracts readers.
The human element of blogging is incredibly important. It’s one of the reasons you can see two blogs that cover the exact same topic and one is very popular and the other isn’t. Readers get involved with the author, and over time, they feel they know them on some level.
If your blog is lacking the human touch, here are 6 tips to help you out.
- Talk about the things that make you mad—Look, you don’t have to be a miserable jerk who’s always griping about something, but talking about the things that annoy you can help readers get to know you better. More times than not, they’ll probably agree with your pet peeves, and they’ll be able to relate to you on a more personal level. So, any time you think of something—relevant to your blog, of course—that gets under your skin, write it down and find a way to use it in a future blog post.
- Write you talk—Finding a way to write with a distinctive voice is critical to the success of your blog. When you have a special writing voice, your readers get comfortable with you, and they feel like they’re in a conversation with you. The best way to make this happen is to simply write like you talk. For example, if you’re funny and quick-witted with your friends, try to inject that into your writing. It’ll help your create your blogging identity.
- Share your mistakes and lessons learned—I think it’s a good idea to open up every once in a while and tell your readers about mistakes you’ve made and lessons you’ve learned. Again, this humanizes your blog, but it also provides valuable information for your readers. If they can learn from and avoid making the same mistakes you’ve made, they’ll be better off for it.
- Have an about section—We probably need to get a short About Us section on this blog. These let new readers know who the heck you are and what you have to offer them. It’s a great tool for introducing yourself.
- Be active in the comments—If someone takes the time to leave a comment on your blog, the least you can do is spend time responding to them. This is good blog etiquette, and it allows you to join in a personal conversation with your readers. Just make sure you’re always respectful—even to those who disagree with you—and that you take the time to leave well-reasoned responses to all comments.
- Offer other ways for readers to contact you—Are you on Twitter? Post your Twitter info on your blog so your readers can follow and interact with you. You can also post your email address so you can respond to questions and suggestions from your audience.
What are some other tips for making a blog more personal?