How well do you know your blog topic? Are you worried that you don't know it well enough? Is this fear holding you back from starting a blog or from blogging more?
There is a way to combat this fear, read more. You need to read more of your so-called competitors content. Don't be afraid to do this.
You don't need to know everything about a topic in order to start a blog about it. However, you do need to be willing to learn and study.
As a matter of fact, one of the more interesting types of blogs to read is by someone who is on a journey of learning about a topic.
There does seem to be one consistent concern with reading other bloggers though and that's the fear of stealing content from others. What do I mean?
Well, have you ever worried that if you read content from bloggers in the same genre that you will wind up sounding too much like them?
Have you ever worried that if you read content from authors in your same genre that you will wind up stealing their ideas?
Well don't be. You need to know your subject well and you need to know what others are saying.
Here is what Elegant Themes had to say about knowing your subject matter.
8. Know Your Subject
You are going to be writing about one or two key topics on a weekly basis. It therefore pays to be knowledgable about what you are writing about. If you are blogging about something you are passionate about, you should already have knowledge about the topic, but do not assume that this means you are an expert.
To run a successful blog, you need to research your articles thoroughly and be able to support your viewpoint with facts and figures.
Therefore you should actively:
- Stay up to date with the latest news in your niche
- Subscribe to good blogs in your niche
- Read books about your topic
The long term goal is to become an authority on your subject and be the one who is leading the discussion.
This is such a great tip. I think that sometimes people are worried about doing this. They worry that if they read too much of the competitor their content won't be original or that they will loose their voice.
The challenge is not to loose touch with your topic. You need to read content in your industry. It is ok to be inspired by competitors.
It is not ok to steal from them.
Just keep that difference in mind and you will be safe.
Also, comment on your competitors blog posts. Don't be shy about this. Do what you can to support your fellow blogger.
When you are reading or listening to friendly niche related content, take notes. Let them know when they did great work.
Also, take notes on your differing thoughts or ways that you can expand on the topic.
Lately I have seen two really great methods on writing terrific blog posts that are completely related to this idea.
Brian at Backlinko has made an entire business around the concept of expanding on great content. He does massive research on competitors blog posts and then finds way to go crazy big. He has even named this content the Skyscraper Technique. I have mentioned this before but let's discuss it again.
His process involves 3 steps.
Step 1: Find link-worthy content
Step 2: Make something even better
Step 3: Reach out to the right people
It sounds simple but in truth he wrote thousands of words on how to do this, so make sure that you check his entire post.
When you run across a pretty good post in your genre as yourself a series of questions and take notes.
- What did they leave out?
- What do I disagree with?
- Do I have better examples?
- Can I explain this in greater detail?
If you were able to make enough notes, then get to work. His entire concept is about making epic content. In today's world of Google epic content wins.
Remember epic content is content that is long, like super long. Try and write those 2,000 to 10,000 word blog posts.
Yep, you read that right!
The folks over at Blogger Sidekick created a blog post that blew my mind. They created an entire process for how to quickly get an epic blog post done.
Not only did the create an amazing piece of content but they brought Ricky Bobby into the concept. http://www.bloggersidekick.com/how-to-write-blog-content/
If you follow their method you should be able to write 1,000 words an hour, in theory.
They break their process into a 6 step process that I recently followed. It was so helpful that it has actually changed how I create content.
The part that really impacted me, also made me feel a bit dirty.
Step 1: Research
They have you do some quick research to find blog posts on your chosen topic.
Step 2: Create a blank document
Then they have you create a new blank document. In that document they have you create an outline for your blog.
Step 3: Get Inspired
This is where it gets creepy for me.
But it worked!
Then you actually copy pieces of the researched blog posts into that document (change the color of the text to red).
Step 4: Write In Your Own Words
After that you reread their content and then you use it for inspiration to write your own content.
At first, I was terrified that I would steal someones words.
But, I didn't.
Once I started writing, I was so inspired that I forgot all about what they wrote and started expanding on the topic with my own thoughts.
So if I hadn't read up on what others are saying about blogging, I would never have gotten these inspirations.
See how it works? So go to town and take a look around. Don't be afraid!
Support this blog by shopping with the Amazon link below.