Jim Wang (Wallet Hacks, Bargaineering, etc) KNOWS how to blog. He’s been at it for 13+ years, has SOLD a blog, and continues to have massive success across many online businesses. The podcast interview drops a TON of value, but don’t miss the blog post takeaways below either!
We’ve all felt it…
- “UGH I’m not growing as fast as I want.”
- “How do I get more traffic?”
- “HOW can I make my content better?”
Luckily, old school mega blogger Jim Wang sat with me and chatted through some of these huge questions.
You’re going to enjoy this. Let’s dive in 😉
How to make your blog STAND OUT.
Be a purple cow.
Be somebody worth remarking on.
I can hear you now. “Great Pete, but what the crap does that actually mean?”
Well, good news bad news:
- Bad news = it’s insanely difficult to condense it into daily actionable advice.
- Good news = It’s also insanely simple
It all boils down to this (Jim’s quote):
The folks you see getting a lot of attention are the ones you see putting themselves out there.
Be your weird, goofy, brutally honest self, and DO NOT HOLD BACK.
If you can figure out how to keep that in mind every single time you sit down to blog, you will start to stand out.
Be worth remarking on. Have content worthy of shares.
Ok fine, here’s a FEW tactical thoughts on making your blog stand out:
1 – colors.
Sounds a bit obvious?
Sure. But choose brand colors (logo, website design, etc) that stands out on ALL social platforms.
Pinterest marketer? Shy away from using Pinterest red for your brand colors. It won’t pop out on Pinterest.
2 – Publish controversial stuff.
And NOT for the sake of being controversial, but because it’s something you actually believe in.
Publishing your opinions is good for all parties involved, including people who disagree with you (it helps them solidify their own opinions).
3 – Seriously, don’t hold back due to fear.
Wanna make all your blog content right-aligned? Who says you can’t?
(Ok that might be a tad annoying, but the point remains).
You do NOT have to run your blog the way everybody else is running their blogs.
Don’t be afraid to let loose and do things the way YOU think they should be done.
Other key takeaways from today’s episode
Be ok with being ok.
New Blogger? Understand this:
Everybody wants to get really big and really popular really fast.
But 9/10, a case of mis-managed expectations will lead to frustration and potentially quitting your blog.
Be ok with being small at the beginning. Chances are, your writing isn’t very good…yet. Keep writing till it gets better.
Also, what if you DO get an amazing early opportunity, and you squander it? What if your content isn’t READY for it?
Pretend you’re a wannabe rockstar. What if you DO get an insane opportunity on stage at Lollapalooza…and you haven’t practiced enough?
You get booed off stage, and it might actually have a negative impact on your career.
Be ok with being small at first. Keep writing. It gets better, easier, and more effective.
Close the “taste gap.”
This is what legendary NPR storyteller Ira Glass says about the point above…
When you first start, your tastes are far better than your ability.
You KNOW what kind of content you WANT to produce in order to make money, build fans, etc…it just isn’t happening yet.
The point is to close that gap.
Find a blogging buddy.
If you were to stroll up to Pat Flynn from SPI and ask for blogging advice…you’d get a totally different kind of value than asking another blogger on your same level.
(I’m not saying Pat wouldn’t add value by the way, I LOVE Pat and think he’s incredible…but let’s be frank, he’s playing at a different level than we are right now).
Find somebody on the same level. Build a relationship with them that’ll have LASTING impact on your blog.
Somebody to share frustrations with. Somebody to help hold you accountable and gossip with.
(Hey, anybody wanna be my blogging buddy?)
It all goes back to your goals
Making a ton of money and not connecting with your audience may work for one type of person, but others.
If a blogger just wants to make as much money as humanly possible, they’ll need to find the perfect balance of sales/offers and reader relationship building…because they don’t always go hand in hand.
This is a tough pill for me to swallow, personally.
I tend to get jealous of other meta-bloggers who don’t mind sending several sales emails: a tactic I personally don’t approve of, only because I hate being on the receiving end of that.
But I shouldn’t be jealous, and here’s why:
There’s no right answer.
How you run your blog and business (and how my competitors run theirs) is completely up to you.
Jim said it best:
It all comes back to your goals.
How true it is.
Trading skills for early exposure
What are you really good at? What do you have to offer a bigger blogger?
Could you possibly reach out to them and NOT just pitch a guest post, blah blah…but rather work with them and offer a service?
However, you need to start with the relationship.
When Jim and J.D. Roth (also on my podcast here) first started their podcast years ago, there was a guy who called in every single week.
He didn’t ask for anything. He just got his name out there in a positive way, and contributed.
Build relationships. The huge benefits of exposure and collaborations come later.
Show notes and referenced links
- 5 Cent Nickel
- Seth Godin – Purple Cow and Tribes (my all-time faves)
- Mr Money Mustache
- $5 Meal Plan
- John from ESI Money (also a podcast guest here)
Did you enjoy this episode with Jim? How are you making YOUR blog stand out?
Leave a comment below!