Last time in this Blog Expert Series, we explored how to find your niche market and what people want to help you run a successful blogging business.
The next thing in the blog expert series to consider is what unique qualities you can bring to your site, which will set you apart from your competitors.
Even if you are operating within a popular area, it doesn’t mean that you can’t differentiate your product and business from the many others out there currently in operation.
Let’s use the analogy of ‘Miss Universe’
Beauty pageants and competitions have been going for years, and still seem to have immense appeal for people. There is something about the mix of visual stimulation, fashion and competition that gets viewers engaged and interested despite the absolute lack of political correctness involved in these events.
When you watch ‘Miss Universe’ or similar programmes, they all have one thing in common. The winners invariably have something about them which stands out. It could be a great talent, a lovely way of speaking or even the fact that the previous year’s winner was blonde, and this year happens to be a brunette.
Whatever it is, something makes the winner stand out from the crowd of other beautiful people, and catch the eye of the judges.
Let’s call this the ‘X’ factor
You can’t put your finger on it, but you know it’s there. When you watch a superb film, or meet a really charismatic person, or see someone on a talent show that you immediately know is going to win, they all have this elusive X factor too.
It is less important to actually work out what the strange appeal and charisma is, than to make sure that you manage to recreate it, through your business.
How do you get the X factor?
Identify other people that have ‘it’
The chances are, when you look at the blogs online that you admire or visit regularly, you will be able to say about each one, ‘there’s just something about it’. That’s the golden ticket to success for a blog.
Whether you love the color scheme, the humor in the writing, the revelations about people’s lives or simply the sound, indispensable business advice which they impart, each one of your most-visited sites have got ‘it’.
It’s really worth doing some research to work out what each blog has, in order to shape a sound idea of what you yourself want to create through your own business.
If you admire beautiful language, it makes sense that you would want your blog to be one of the most well-written out there. If you can identify that ‘X factor’, the likelihood is you will be capable of recreating it.
Similarly, if you can establish that you visit certain sites because they are so full of superb information and advice that they have become indispensable, then the chances are you will be able to achieve the same when you get your own site off the ground.
This research is all about working out what your own strengths and aspirations are, by identifying what appeals in the work of other bloggers. People tend to be drawn to things which they can both admire, and understand.
We like comedians who have the same sense of humor as us.
We enjoy reading a great novel more when something in it mirrors our own life.
It stands to reason, then, that we will be drawn to certain blogs, because they are sporting the X factor in a way that we both admire, and can emulate ourselves.
Choosing how to shine
The blogosphere is a very big place.
Each blog which succeeds has something about it which has clicked with thousands of readers, making them return again and again. Your job is to establish what attributes you have, that will make your blog distinct and engaging in the face of stiff competition.
When you find that unique blend, you’ll be well on the way to making money online through your site.
In the next Blog Expert Series we shall discuss how to be different.
Here’s the links to the previous Blog Expert Series posts:
Blog Expert Series: The Surprising Decision 77% Of Bloggers Get Wrong
Blog Expert Series: Be The Blog Every Blogger Envies
How do you make your blog stand out and be different?
Please share your views in the comments below.
Great analogy Andrew. It is true that I do look for specifics when I visit other blogs. Maybe not even consciously always. I know I enjoy blogs with great content that teach me something new. Also I love the wordsmiths among us who write superbly and are able to communicate at a level some of us would aspire to. Also amongst it all I love a blog that is also infused with a touch of humour. Pleased to say I have found some in each of these catagories and visit them all often. Definitely I visit those with that certain X factor 🙂
Patricia Perth Australia
Well thank YOU for visiting mine and coming back again and again!
I haven’t watched the Miss Universe in the last few years and I am certain I am missing out! I have occasionally watched the X -Factor in the UK and I understand what having the X-Factor means! It’s that extraordinary thing (which sometimes you don’t know what it is) that makes something special and you want to have more of it. I did a 3-month study on that last year together with my web developers when we were preparing the design of a new site and had to decide what it will look like. Having the X-Factor makes the difference.Thanks for the tips.
A 3-month study! Wow – you must have some great insights into ‘x’ factoring.
What’s the domain of the site?
You just use your own style and let it fly, people will navigate to you do to the unique look you will bring to the table.
“TrafficColeman “Signing Off”
i would say everyone has his own way to shine and show up , it is all about time and being up to date with every thing so you can know about being the x-factor or having that well done job more and more !! people opinions and suggestions do matter all the time cause they are the target !!!! 🙂
“How do you get the X factor?” Hmmm…isn’t that the $64,000 question.
Well it’s not an easy task for sure. I think it’s a combination of things. For me, why I go back is usually because the site educates, entertains and reassures me with their content.
I’m left with a feeling of – I learned something new today. Whether it was a new technique for my business, something about myself or something about the world in general.
I do agree Andrew that it’s about tapping into what’s unique about YOU and expressing it in a way that leaves others touched, moved and inspired.
Practice, practice, practice. =)
I agree it is not easy and you have to try many differents styles.
P.S. Hope to see YOU come back!
Absolutely! I’m definitely left touched, moved and inspired after reading your articles. :p
I’m following your blog expert series now 🙂 Hmm, you’re right about seeking the X factor. You want to find something that makes you stand out from the crowd! I’m still searching for that.
Thx for putting up this inspiring post 🙂
…and me…still seaching!
The x factor is in everyone, Andrew, but the tricky part is to wake it up. Because if you just go out and try to find out how the other people are working their x factor, or better said how someone is transmitting his x factor into his business, you would just end up with something similar with that guy/gal way of expressing your uniqueness. But that wont be something unique wouldn’t it?
So my opinion is that when someone sees the x factor in play they get inspired and helps them wake up their own unique talents.
The fact that some refines that uniqueness to make a difference is an other story (about ambition, goals etc).
I like what you say. You are right we can take inspiration from others but we still need to be unique.
You’re right, of course. Each author has something unique and valuable to bring to the blogosphere. Find that; focus on it; develop it, and you’ll find success.
Easy to say…for some…much harder to do…don’t you agree?
I absolutely agree,
I guess all of us are experts in our own fields.
But we must keep ourselves to be unique, and the most important is “we know what we are doing or talking about” to be success.
If we just follow the flow and not sure what we are doing, we will just sink at the end.
Correct me if i am wrong 😀
I’ve started a couple of blogs on subjects…just to make some income.
I got bored very quickly!
Most of us do visit a website or blog because of “the X factor” impact it may have on us. By being true to oneself, I guess, is one of the best ways on how to genuinely make new friends in the blogging world. If you want others to learn something from what you write that no one else could deliver, then I think that’s more or less considered an X factor already. 🙂
Yeah – learning something new rather than the same old drivel…that would be a big step.