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How personal should you get on your blog?

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Blogging is an excellent way for Long Beach writers to build a following. Blogs allow writers to share their expertise and let reader and potential readers alike get to know them.

But how personal should a writer make his or her blog? How much personal information is enough? And how much is not enough?

The answer to these questions depends, in part, on how you define "personal" information. Here are some guidelines that you can follow when deciding whether or not to share a piece of information on your blog.

Will this information give a positive or negative impression of you? Airing dirty laundry on your blog will make you seem petty and small. Being authentically transparent about a challenge — and how you are overcoming it — will make you seem courageous and relate-able.

Will this information expose or impact people you know in a way they won't appreciate? Follow the Golden Rule with this one and honor the privacy of others.

Is this information related to the over-arching theme of your blog, website, business or writing? Sharing stories that don't relate to the topic of your blog is a great way to loose readers. Also, non-related content can sometimes make you look unprofessional and cost you business.

Will this information help you illustrate points related to your work and blog? Sharing a story from your life that helps you communicate your topic of expertise better is an excellent way to get personal on your blog.

Will this information help bring your personality out to your audience? When readers feel like they know you because of your writing style and the stories you share on your blog are more likely to buy more of your work.

Being personal in your blog is a balancing act between professionalism and privacy. Only you can truly determine what is too personal and private. But, if you are finding it challenging to find and keep that balance, it is probably prudent to err on the side of the less personal.

In other words, it is OK to share that your youngest son just won an award for spelling if it’s relevant to your audience. You can share that your dog just passed away, if you’ve already set up a precedent of talking about your dog in your posts. These are details that can enhance what you have to say, and give your readers characteristics and quirks to relate to. Just don’t over do it. Keep the balance between being human and being an entrepreneurial writer.

Are you an entrepreneurial author? Do you want to be? Are you ready to build your business and platform so that it expresses your creativity, conveys your worth and message authentically and is profitable? Visit www.carmaspence.com to learn more.

NOTE: Are you a writer, author or editor connected to Long Beach in some way? Please contact me ... and you can be a part of my series of profiles of local writers!

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