by Guest Author
This is a guest post by Dan Schawbel. If you want to guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines here.
There are far too many people who are creating blogs (hundreds of millions at this point), without truly understanding their own personal brands. The end result is a blog that has a life expectancy of no more than a few months before it enters the R.I.P. blog graveyard.
Basing a blog off of what is the next hottest industry buzz word or something your friend is writing about is the wrong way to go about it. For a blog to succeed in 2009 and beyond, it has to be built on what I call the success triangle: passion, expertise and a support system.
The success triangle:
Without enough genuine enthusiasm, you won’t be committed to have a successful blog or career. Passion eliminates fear, obstacles and a short-term outlook for success. Since a blog cannot be built overnight, passion allows you to constantly generate content, while loving every minute of the process. You can tell, as a blog reader, who is passionate and who is in it to just make money.
Most of you might not think your experts and that’s fine. You don’t want to call yourself an expert without a third party endorsement anyways or it comes off as superficial and self-proclaimed. Passion is the fuel that will make you invest the time to become an expert in your field. Malcolm Gladwell says it takes 10,000 hours and the only way you’ll pull even a quarter of that time off is with the heart to do so. Expertise allows you fulfill customer of client needs, which in turn gives you a monetization system.
3. Support system
Blogs don’t just grow after writing a few entries. You have to be the chief marketing officer and get the word out. In order to do this, it’s all about networking and that will never change. The larger your network, the more resources you have to help funnel your blog and grow your brand.
Get feedback about your brand both directly and indirectly. Aside from asking your closest friends and colleagues about your strengths, interests and skills, there is a new way that you can measure perception. If you’re on Twitter, and I hope most of you reading this are, you’ll notice a new option called “Twitter Lists.” After tweeting several times, you’ll be categorized on lists based on how you represent yourself – your brand – on Twitter. This includes your profile page and tweets. The way people categorize you in lists is a reflection of the brand you’re presenting to the world. If you don’t like you you’re categorized, then you need to do something about it.
Dan Schawbel is the leading personal branding expert for Gen-Y. He is the bestselling author of Me 2.0, as well as the publisher of both the award winning Personal Branding Blog and Personal Branding Magazine.