7 Fascinating Ways to Spice Up a Boring Blog

Is your blog irresistible?

Is your combination of energy, personality and authenticity hard to forget?

Or, are you afraid to push the boundaries because you might lose readers?  Your fear could be holding you back. In fact, pushing the wild side may be the exact “kick” that your blog needs.

Think about your niche.  Right now, 90% of the people blogging about topic are huddled around mediocrity.  No one wants to offend, shock or make waves.  Another 5% are living double lives.  One day they are Dr. Jekyll, the other Mr. Hyde.  They are searching for their voice and looking for the courage to break free.

The last 5% are jaw-droppers.  Every post they pen oozes personality.  Their blog has a hypnotic draw that inspires a fanatical following.  You’ll find these “artists” in every niche and industry: resume writing, law, gardening, librarians (I’m serious!) and hundreds more.

They inspire and make social media look easy.

You can too because I’m going to give you the recipe to making your blog absolutely fascinating.  By the way, the bloggers that push the envelope get their guest posts published, strike up lucrative partnerships and land those juicy joint ventures.  Do not ignore this…

Cooking with Positioning and Fascination

Your blog’s transformation starts with equal parts unique positioning and fascination. Hang in there; we’ll walk through this together.

Positioning:

Savvy copywriters would call this your USP or Unique Selling Proposition.  No one agrees on what USP is – but a safe and useful definition is: What makes your blog unique from the rest of your competitors.  Here’s another way of putting it-

If you were in a stadium  with 1000 other bloggers in your niche, how would you describe yourself so that a person could pick you out of the crowd?

Next, we add…

Fascination:

In Sally Hogshead’s eye-opening book Fascinate, she explains seven triggers that make a person or idea fascinating.  Entertainers are talented at using these triggers to craft hypnotic personae. For that matter, so do teachers, politicians, parents and entrepreneurs.

To make your blog stick in the minds of your readers, you need to flirt with fascination triggers a bit yourself.

Here’s 7 audacious (and slightly naughty) triggers to add to your toolkit:

  1. Lust: Anticipation of pleasure
    Lust isn’t solely about sex.  Lust is the emotion that says “I want to see, feel, hear, or touch more”.  People lust over iPads, apple pie, hi-fi speakers and the perfect pair of stiletto heels.
  2. How to Use It:

    Pay special attention to the look, layout and visual appeal of your blog. Spice up your writing to paint visual pictures that are hard to forget. Look for ways to boost the emotional impact of your writing. You can’t trigger lust with rational arguments, you need to excite the emotions and win your reader’s heart.

  3. Mystique: Obsessed by the Unknown
    Mystique says, “I know something you don’t”.  It’s the reason why secrets are such a powerful motivator.  It’s the juice in gossip.
  4. How to Use It:

    Pseudonyms, private forums and membership sites all pique curiosity. People want to know what you have up your sleeve.  Many cannot bear to know that they are missing something.

    If you have nerves of steel, you can even make yourself scarce, only responding to comments, tweets, and comments during carefully scripted events (Think – Steve Jobs and Seth Godin).

  5. Alarm: The Threat of Loss and Regret
    Alarm gets your heart thumping like a jackhammer. Alarm instantly grabs your attention.   Alarm carries the implicit threat of danger, loss and other negative consequences.The most potent negative consequence is the possibility of missing out on an opportunity.
  6. How to Use It:

    Deadlines and scarcity are the hallmarks of alarm.  Use it to shake your readers up and get them to take action.  For example, offer a limited-time price for your eBook or limited spots in a membership group to press the alarm button.

  7. Prestige: Symbols of rank and respect
    It’s the Rolex watch, the Presidential Seal and Consumer Reports stamp of approval.  Prestige is the upper crust that says – I demand respect.

  8. How to Use It:

    Savvy blog owners borrow credibility and prestige from other sources.  That’s why you see Top 150 Ad Age Badges, Subscriber, Twitter follower counts and “As Seen On” mentions.  Guest blogging is also a powerful way to borrow prestige.  If you have it, strut it.

  9. Power: Everybody wants it – everybody respects it
    Real power makes things happen.  Power is usually the result of flawlessly using the other fascination tools. You may not have it now, but every red-blooded homosapien wants a taste of it.

  10. How to Use It:

    If you have power – use it delicately.  Power flaunted is arrogance and arrogance isn’t cool. Use power to demonstrate the influence of your community.  It’s said that Gary Vaynerchuk flexed his muscles to get a book deal with HarperStudio by flooding their website with comments from his tribe of Vayniaks.

  11. Vice: “It’s So Bad But Feels So Good”
    Las Vegas was built on “legal vice”.  Vice lovers don’t have to break the law, they can also manipulate taboo and naughty behavior with the same effect.
  12. How to Use It:

    Breaking the rules!  Saucy language, extreme visuals and no-holds barred advice are all the hallmarks of Vice.  By the way, there really aren’t any rules in social media .so feel free to break and bend a few so-called guidelines.  If you need an example then check out IttyBiz.com, Naomi Dunsford has a  chokehold on Vice. :)

  13. Trust: The Foundation of it All
    Boring on the outside, powerful as heck on the inside.  Don’t mess with Trust. Once broken, it can destroy a nation, a marriage and your blog.  Trust is the price of entry for social business.
  14. How to Use It:

    Use editorial schedules, weekly rituals and a consistent voice to reliably pay-off your brand. A steady drumbeat of solid information (or entertainment) should be at the core of your brand.  Whatever you choose to be, reliably deliver it.

After you’ve settled on a unique position, select a Fascination tool to kick up your appeal.  Choose wisely, because the combination of Positioning and Fascination will create your Brand.  Once you start building your brand, it’s hard to change. From here, be relentless.  Build on your brand with consistent use fascination to gain attention and attract followers.

Fascinate Me!

What are you doing to craft your position?  Which of the Fascination tools are you using to make your presence irresistible?

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(Image imspired by: shannonkringen)

About Stan

Stan Smith is the Managing Director of Pushing Social a content marketing consultancy for aggressive, results-focused organizations.

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