Guest blog post by Alysia Noris of But, she was fierce
Does your blog read like every other blog out there? Are you struggling to stand out in your niche? Your blog may have an identity crisis that has nothing to do with content.
Just as every person is unique, so too should every blog be. That’s because the way we speak, the language we use, our jargon, our slang and our rhythm, are unique to us. Our content may be similar to others, but the way we express that content can’t and shouldn’t be duplicated.
However, it’s very easy for new bloggers to fall into the trap of sounding like other writers they admire or aspire to be like. Unfortunately, unless you already speak like them, your writing may come across as false or “trying too hard”. Discerning readers will see right through the pretence and log off.
Guest blog post by Alysia Norris of But, she was fierce
Finding your authentic voice is critical if you want your readers to go on a journey with you. Regardless of what your niche is, readers need authenticity if they’re ever going to trust you, buy the products you recommend or read the books you review.
What is an Authentic Voice?
An authentic voice is how you express personality through your writing. It’s in the words you choose, your sense of humour, slang, profanity and even the cadence that you write in. Are you bold? Shy? Vulgar? Confident? Sarcastic? Do you speak in short, sharp, snappy bursts, or do you use a little more poetry and lots of adjectives? All these things should be reflected in your writing.
How do I Find my Blogging Voice?
Finding your voice is about paying attention to how you speak in daily life, and allowing that to shine through in your posts. Follow these five tips to help you find your authentic voice:
1. Who are You?
Personal awareness is the first place to start. There are loads of personality tests online that can help you better understand yourself and map out the various traits that make you “you.” Apply your learnings when you review your draft posts and ask yourself if they reflect your personality.
2. Keep a Journal
Journals are great; in fact I’d say they’re essential to help you discover your authentic voice. I’ve been keeping a journal since I was 10, and nothing is more embarrassing than reading your pre-teen voice. But it’s only embarrassing because it’s real and literally sounds like a 10-year-old girl is speaking back to me from the pages of perfumed pink paper.
3. Go with your Gut
How many times have you written something contentious and then deleted it for fear of offending someone? Your first instinct is usually the most honest. Next time you go to tap that delete button, ask yourself whether you’re worried about offending or are you worried about what others might think of you?
4. Dare to Bare
Showing your vulnerabilities and opening up to readers makes you more relatable and helps to earn their trust. If you’re looking to monetise your blog, you need readers that trust your content, trust your opinions and trust your reviews.
5. Don’t Fake it
They say fake it ‘til you make it, but we all know that faking it can be exhausting. Writing with honesty and authenticity should come more naturally than writing in a voice that’s not your own. Do yourself a favour and stop trying to be someone you’re not. This shouldn’t affect what you write about, but it will definitely make what you write sound more like you.
Accept that not everyone is going to like the real you, especially if you have been pretending to be someone else. But in the long term, you want followers who accept who you are, because they’re ultimately the best audience for you to market to.
About the author
Alysia Norris is a former journalist who switched to the dark side of public relations and communications. She launched her blog But, she was fierce in December 2017 as a form of therapy following a diagnosis of bipolar II. It’s a collection of true stories about sex, self-discovery, and travel after infertility and divorce. Her mantra is truth to herself and others, and this is reflected in her no-holds barred writing style that shares her most personal and not always flattering moments. She lives in Newcastle, Australia