19
Sep
2017
0

HOW TO DECIDE WHAT TO BLOG ABOUT

Unless your blog is strictly for your own enjoyment, you’re probably hoping to gain readers. So, it’s important to consider what others might want to read.

I’ve been watching the blogosphere for years. Below are five overarching areas that seem to attract the most readers. Below that are some practical tips for choosing your own blog topic.

Readers want to solve a problem

What do people get frustrated about? Do you have a solution? This is how my blogging took off. I talked to a lot of bloggers who loved to write but got frustrated with the techy side of blogging. I knew I could help solve this problem by sharing blogging tips, tools and tutorials in a non-techy way.

Readers want to relieve their fears

What are people afraid of? How can you help ease those fears? Maybe you’re a parent who has lost a child. It’s a real and valid fear for a lot of parents. Sharing your story of hope and healing could be very helpful for many people. Or maybe you can offer help to those facing job loss or financial disaster.

Readers want to learn something new

What would people love to do if only they knew how? What do you know that you could teach them? Maybe you’re a whiz at crocheting, you have a knack for writing or you have a unique way of teaching math that makes it easy to understand. A lot of people have projects around the house they would gladly tackle but aren’t sure where to start. Teach them.

Readers want to reach a goal

What are common goals people have? Have you set and reached some significant goals? Can you spell out how you did it and inspire others on their journey? Fitness and weight loss come to mind here, as well as getting out of debt. Pursuing big goals can be disheartening and lonely. Knowing someone else has been there does wonders.

Readers want to be entertained

Do you have a fascinating story? Do you lead a wildly interesting life? Are you outrageously funny? Everyone needs down time and plenty of blogs exist purely to entertain. I’d say this is a trickier path to pursue since there’s no shortage of entertainment to be had on the internet, in magazines and on TV, but it’s doable. The key is providing something totally unique. Of course as a bonus, you could be entertaining and helpful at the same time. For example, if your family raises llamas, talk about how you raise llamas not just that you raise llamas. Entertaining + helpful = a great combination.

Related: How to Blog: Step-By-Step Guide

Now that you know what others are looking for, here are some tips to decide where your interests might overlap and therefore make a good blog topic.

Good Blog Topic

Is my blog idea a good one?

I get many, many emails from people asking me if I think their blog topic idea is a good one. These emails usually include:

  1. An explanation of the topic, perhaps with some personal background
  2. Questions about whether (a) there are people who would read it and/or (b) if it’s a topic that could make money

completely understand why it’s such a common question! I would want to know the same. After all, who wants to put time and energy into something that gets no visitors and earns no money?

Here are my thoughts on the subject, and the answer I usually give in response…

First, there are blogs on almost every topic imaginable, from Managery Waves to bliss of india and everything in between. In short, the topic itself is usually not the problem. Most topics have the potential to attract visitors and make at least some money.

The main questions are:

  1. Is your passion or excitement about the topic infectious, so those who are interested will be drawn to you and those who aren’t interested will become so?
  2. Can you write about the topic indefinitely? It takes most bloggers a long time to gain traction…and then once they do, they have to keep going. So, you have to be in it for the long haul. Like years.
  3. How will you stand out among the other blogs in the same niche? There are millions of blogs online so it’s very likely others on the web are writing about the same topic (or very similar topics) despite how unique or obscure it seems to you.
  4. Are there more than a few people in the world who share your interest or would find it entertaining?

Will I be able to make money writing about ____ topic?

What’s nice about blogging is that just about any topic can generate income. However there is no way to guarantee a particular topic will generate income. For example, there are plenty of recipe blogs (or food blogs or photo blogs or craft blogs or decor blogs) that make a lot of income, and there are many more that don’t.

It’s not so much the topic that’s important, it’s becoming the go-to resource for that topic. Write in a way others are drawn to and want to read, and create or promote products your readers are willing to buy. Stand out. Give more. Build relationships with people who want to read about that topic.

Pro tip: A quick way to tell if others are making money in a particular topic or niche is to do a Google search. Do ads show up at the top of the search results page when you type in main topics? If so, people are making money in that niche (otherwise they wouldn’t spend money on advertising) and there’s potential for you too. Note: The absence of ads doesn’t necessarily indicate you couldn’t make money in a particular niche. Deeper digging often reveals sites that do make money but don’t choose to advertise on Google.

Write for others

A lot of new bloggers fail to think beyond their own interests when starting a blog (see above). Your blog should undoubtedly be an extension of you, but if you’re not writing for the benefit of others at the same time, you might as well just keep a diary.

Pick a niche

Instead of just writing whatever comes to mind, try to write around a general topic. (This is called your niche.) Not only will it be easier to stay on task, it’ll be a lot easier for readers to track with you.

While not required, a niche provides focus and direction, making your blog’s purpose easily understood and defined, not only by you, but by your visitors as well.

Is this niche too broad or too specific?

If your blog’s topic is too broad, it’s hard to compete with, and stand out from, all the other blogs and websites in your niche. On the other hand, if your topic is too narrow, the pool of interested readers will be too small to gain any traction.

For example, “photography” is a very broad topic. On the other hand, “photography in 50-Person Town, USA” doesn’t give you a very large audience. “Black and white photography” is better. “Black and white photography in National Parks” is better still. “Black and white photography in Yellowstone” might be even better. The goal is to find a topic with a good number of interested people and plenty of potential subtopics, but a topic that not so many other people are writing about. Do some research and googling to narrow it down.

Is this niche saturated?

Back in the day, when there weren’t so many blogs online, you could almost pick any topic and run with it. Now, not so much. There are definitely niches that are really, really full and therefore, difficult to break into. How do you know? If you can easily find several dozen popular blogs on the topic, you might rethink your topic.

However, just because a niche is big doesn’t mean it’s a bad idea to choose it. After all, a large niche means there’s a market for it. Spend time watching the main players. Knowing your way around will help you fine-tune the “thing” that will make you stand out.

Are readers in this niche willing to spend money?

If you hope to generate income, this is an important question. Think about the intersection between your niche and your audience. For example, if you’re hoping to promote high-end clothing products, it’s probably not a great idea to target struggling college students. Another way to look at it: are other blogs in this niche earning money? Finding this out is easier said than done, but keep your eyes and ears peeled. Do those blogs have advertisers? Are the blogs active, engaging and growing?

Do you have plenty to blog about?

Choose a topic that you can write about regularly and indefinitely. Remember, you’re in this for the long haul. If you post once a week, that amounts to 52 posts a year. Three times a week? 156 posts. Five times a week? 260 posts.  And that’s just barely getting started! Don’t choose something so narrow that you run out of writing fodder after only a few weeks or months.

A good way to test this is to brainstorm possible posts or subtopics pertaining to your main blog topic. If you can easily come up with a list of several dozen with additional ideas about how to branch out, it’s probably a good sign. If, however, you can’t think of many, you might need to rethink your choice. Another way to work around this problem is to have  a multi-author blog.

Rock your ninja-ness

If you aren’t sure you have much to offer, I love what Sonia Simone says, “Even if you’re only pretty good, but not a ninja, you’re still a ninja to someone.” Find that thing about which you have a decent amount of know-how and go with it. Chances are there are others who will appreciate what you have to say.

Choose a topic you are genuinely passionate about

If you don’t have a genuine interest in what you’re writing about, it will be a drag and a burden. If you talk about the topic among your real life friends and they just want you to be quiet already, it’s a great topic to blog about.

Choose a niche in which you can be an authority

The key here is to think smaller. “Niching down,” as some say, or, choosing a narrower niche, may have a smaller pool of potential readers, but you might be able to gain a following quicker too.

What kind of site do you wish you could find?

Sometimes a good way to determine a viable blog niche is to ask yourself what you’ve found to be lacking online. After all, if you’re looking for it, someone else might be looking for it too. This is how I started my first blog. In 2015, I was a struggling housewife. I knew I couldn’t be the only housewife having a difficult time, so I searched online for others with whom I could relate. I couldn’t find any, so I started my own. Another way to look at it: what group is being ignored online?

What’s missing on other blogs?

When I asked this question in 2016, my blog not yet actully started taking off. There are a gazillion blogs about blogging and making money blogging. What I noticed though, is that a lot of them say things like, “Wanna start a blog? Great! You’ll need hosting and a domain and then here’s how to blog…” Not a lot of them explained exactly how to choose a domain and how to purchase & set up hosting in a step-by-step way. So, even in this huge niche, I decided to tackle the basics where a lot of people seemed to get lost (like I did when I first started!). Find a hole and fill it.

As you hang out in your potential niche, continually ask yourself what’s missing. What are people looking for? What are you looking for? Read comments, get involved in forums, Twitter and Facebook and keep your ears peeled for hints about what people want, but can’t find.

Be different

Bloggers tend to copy what other bloggers do. This is absolutely valuable in many ways, but it’s not so good when it puts your blog right smack in the middle of average. Brainstorm ways to do things differently.

  • Do most bloggers in your niche write long posts? Why not keep yours short?
  • Do most bloggers in your niche write words? Why not vlog?
  • Do most bloggers in your niche post a few times a week? Why not post every day?
  • Or maybe you could start a unique feature or incorporate an interesting twist — something no one else has done or something you saw someone in a different niche do that you think might work in yours.

You may have heard(not sure if you are not searching about) of The Pioneer Woman. Way back when, she was one of many bloggers blogging about their lives as a mom. But one day she started recounting the tale of how her (a city girl) and her husband (a cowboy) met and fell in love. Her readers ate it up. Coupled with her outstanding photography and love for cooking, she subsequently rose to the top of her niche…and the entire mommy blogging world.

What hasn’t been done before? Try it and see if it propels you to the top!

Be flexible

Once you choose a niche, don’t feel like you’re committed to it for life. Blogging is very fluid and changes constantly. Being flexible and taking advantage of ways to be different will serve you well. In fact, expect it.

Be you

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to find a blog you love…and then try to duplicate it. You must differentiate yourself. One of the greatest things about blogs is they afford us the opportunity to get to know the individual behind the blog. Blogging is part of social media because it’s just that—social.

Let your personality come through. If you’re goofy, be goofy. If you’re feisty, be feisty. If you’re contemplative, be contemplative. Your readers will be drawn to what you have to say, but they will also be drawn to who you are. BE YOU.

Resist paralysis of analysis

Many people get stuck at this point in the process because they’re terrified of making the “wrong choice.” While a well-chosen niche is a benefit, one wonderful thing about the internet is how forgiving it is. Don’t be afraid to dive in and figure it out as you go. We all do that. Better to do that than to do nothing at all. Just start. How about right now?

 

6
Sep
2017
0

12 THINGS YOU CAN DO WITH A BLOG

There are plenty of reasons why you should consider starting a blog. Blogs are the new resume, the new business card, the new marketing brochure or advertising billboard and they’re quickly becoming a source of excellent income for many of us.

It’s a place you own and control, allowing you to develop any type of personal brand or reputation you desire. A blog makes you approachable and helps you establish authority.

1. Want to work from home?

Blogging is a perfect way to connect with potential clients and customers as you offer useful information on your blog. Blogging allows you to turn a hobby or passion into income without a lot of overhead, little risk and a low barrier to entry. Blogging allowed my husband to quit his job and is our family’s main source of income.

2. Want to write a book?

These days, most publishers won’t even consider your manuscript if you don’t have a blog. I know this because publishers have told me outright, and because aspiring authors have emailed me saying their manuscript was on hold until they started a blog.

3. Want a new job?

A blog demonstrates to potential employers that you’re technologically aware and competent. It also gives you a place to highlight your expertise.

4. Are you a small business owner?

Traditional marketing and advertising is interruptive and it turns customers off. Content marketing is the new way to spread the word about your product or service. With content marketing, you provide useful information and therefore establish yourself as a trustworthy authority. Because you’ve established trust, customers seek out your product or service.

5. Want to save time communicating with customers?

If you deal with a large group of customers, having one place to communicate can save you a lot of time and energy. Sure, you could field separate emails all day long, but what if you could write it once and then direct everyone to the blog post with all the details?

6. Trying to spread the word about a cause?

A blog gives you a platform to easily tell others what you’re doing. You could knock on doors, pass out flyers or show up at meetings, but what if you could reach a whole lot more people for a lot less effort?

7. Want to find like-minded individuals?

Maybe you have an interest that isn’t shared by anyone in your immediate circle of friends. A blog would allow you to connect with people who share your interest. You’ll learn, grow and build community. You might even make some money too.

8. Moving soon or worried you might get laid off?

Your blog stays with you and remains under your control, no matter what life throws at you. The connections you make with readers are always at your disposal.

9. Hoping for a scholarship to college?

What better way to showcase your accomplishments than by having your own blog or website? And how impressive would it be to say, “For more information, check out my website.” In our case, we’re building a website for our daughter who’s hoping to get a volleyball scholarship.

10. Want an easy way to stay connected with family or friends?

It’s not uncommon for us to be separated from our loved ones. A blog allows you to keep connected, post photos, etc. “But that’s what I do on Facebook and Instagram!” Maybe so, but social media platforms don’t last forever. If they die, so will your content. On your blog, you’ll own it.

11. Want to hone your writing skills?

There’s nothing like a blog that will get you practicing your writing. It can also be a source of great feedback from others who are not your mother. 🙂

12. It will expand your horizons

You have no idea what kind of opportunities will come your way as a blogger. I sure didn’t! I’ve known bloggers who have traveled to places they never thought they’d go, get jobs that were only pipe dreams, made friendships that were deeper than anything they’ve experienced and completely restructured their lives so they could get out of the rat race that was killing them.

Convinced?

Getting started couldn’t be simpler! Follow me here, I’ll walk you right through…

5
Sep
2017
0

This rule will kill freelancing in India

Very recently, PayPal sent you an email to its customer base in India that the company will charge 18% GST on paypal services in India effective from October – 2017.freelancing in india

The bigger issue is that each and every transfer of funds from your PayPal account to your bank account will require a separate FIRC.

PayPal which is used by pretty much all the freelancers and web developers to sell to global client has mandated the new rules from October 2nd.

Typically, freelancers do 100-200 transactions every month (ranging from $10 – $1000). Each FIRC costs Rs. 200 (+ 18% GST).

There is a fee of INR 200.00 + 18% GST per FIRC certificate charged by Citibank (i.e. per transfer from PayPal to your bank). For merchants with a Citibank account, this fee will be automatically deducted from the bank account. Merchants without a Citibank account will be required to submit a Demand Draft of the fee amount in favour of ‘CITIBANK INDIA NA FIRC CHARGES’, payable at Mumbai together with the FIRC request letter.

That is, for each and every transaction !!

So what is a freelancer job going to be post October 2nd? File FIRCs (which is a painful process and many banks aren’t even aware of the process).

If you’re a freelancer who’s working online and you’ve ever been paid through Paypal, you will be required to either file FIRCs (Which are near impossible to get in my own experience), or you will have to pay 18% GST from your own pocket even while you’re exporting and legally exempt.

If this goes through as-is, this will destroy the freelancer market in India. Doing business from India cannot be this tough.

Freelancer community has started an online petition to urge RBI to look into this. Please go ahead and sign the petition.

 

Source : NBW
22
Aug
2017
0

What are 5 habits that can improve my life?

Not just habits but they can be life lessons, some tips or things that you’ve experienced and you wish the other person should know.

There are some rules to change your life for the better or things you should do every day to become smarter but when it comes to habit it is somewhat different as it requires much effort to convert as task into habit. A habit that you enjoy.

This is where i am working on:

Socially:

  • Close your social media ID’s.
  • Cutoff some unwanted people from your life.
  • Make some genuine friends.
  • Start Saying No to people.
  • Stop being available every time.

Emotionally:

  • Never think about past and future.
  • Involve yourself in some work to not to think about anyone.
  • Instead of listening Arjit Singh’s song try something new.
  • Forgive people.
  • Forgiving yourself.

Health:

  • Avoid junk food
  • Drink more water
  • Start having balanced diet
  • Have some good breakfast
  • Start doing exercise
  • Get up early in morning
  • Sleep early in night to complete above mentioned point.

For success:

  • Read books
  • Set goals
  • Work hard
  • Try again after failure
  • Stay motivated
  • Talk with people who failed, worked hard and then get success.
  • Start writing something daily.

Life:

  • Sit with your grandparents and parents to get life-living experience.
  • Go on some adventure trips.
  • Make some good hobbies.
  • Work with some NGO on ground to know the reality of life.
  • Have a pet. Most probably a dog. He will make you realise how to be faithful.

Happy life.

22
Aug
2017
0

Things should I do every day to become smarter

What are those things that i should do everyday to become smarter

This questions comes to every individual’s mind while he/she analyzing themselves and comparing to more smarter people. Nowadays everyone want to get smarter, however many people believe that intelligence is limited to those with high I.Q.s.

“By the way, intelligence to me isn’t just being book-smart or having a college degree; it’s trusting your gut instincts, being intuitive, thinking outside the box, and sometimes just realizing that things need to change and being smart enough to change it.” – Tabatha Coffey

  1. Consume less and produce more – Stop reading random articles, go write something. Practice the 80/20 rule.
    20% of your time = Consume
    80% of your time = Produce
  2. Watch less TV – TV is EVIL and it kills our creativity.
  3. Go out for a walk – If you are stuck with a problem, go out for a walk. Talk to the trees, they know the answer (JK)
  4. Hang out with people who are smarter than you – Remember that quote? You are average of 5 people that you hang out with the most (something like that)
  5. Practice intentional reading – Only read something if you are looking for an answer. No more reading just because you saw something in your Facebook newsfeed.
  6. Practice your craft daily – Whatever you are good at, do more of it.
  7. Start a side hustle – See if you can generate some passive income. It’s a great way to improve your business skills.
  8. Sleep – Sleeping well is a great way to recharge and it keeps our brain sharp. (Confession – I struggle with this one all the time)
  9. Learn a new skill – Maybe a new language or pick up a new hobby.
  10. Answer questions on Quora – There are so many “hidden” benefits of this. e.g.
    • You get to help others
    • You get to share personal stories
    • You get to produce content
  11. Practice speaking loudly: The world is full of chaos and day by day it is becoming hard to make people notice you. And if they don’t notice then you don’t exist.That’s why it’s a good idea to practice speaking loudly. Make room in your daily routine and scream your inner thoughts. Believe me, it adds.
  12. Know your surrounding: Collect information about everything, when the street beside your office was inaugurated, what is the name of the tree that you cross everyday in your neighborhood, what is the major chemical in the paint on your office building. There is no limit. People seems to have more trust on people who know little details about their surroundings. Besides, you can amaze people every now and then.
  13. Watch Interviews: People who are successful have their own views on life and its challenges. It provides a great insight about the way of life, the struggle handling and the feel when finally, one has won. It not only inspiring also deeply educational.
  14. Solve mathematical problems: Give your neurons some exercise. What better way to sharpen them than math.

    There are thousands of easy to hard mathematical problems around the internet. You can find hundreds in Quora. You can also watch the videos of Numberphile. They are passionate, transparent and magnificently beautiful.

  15. Learn a history fact: Don’t believe anyone who says that history is waste of time. It is one of the most fertile source of knowledge. No other sector of information can provide you with insight on human psychology, culture, geography, biology, business, dynamics of market and many more.
  16. Read Philosophy: Not just randomly, read them with routine, passion and patience. It will provide motivation to you, meaning to your work, compassion to your sufferings, support to your failure, attitude in your appearance. You will understand the source of flaws in your nature, your limitations and be able to design your way out of them.
  17. Sing a song: Sing out loud, it has both physical and psychological benefits.

    It increases your tone, smoother your voice increase your confidence. It improves your heart condition and gives a psychological boost to fight all the mental menaces.

  18. Outdoor Jogging: Run, from all your drawbacks, tiredness, depression, anxieties. Run in the morning close to nature. Let your sweats wash your unsmartness.
  19. Breath: In the movie “Karate Kid 2” there is a great line

    When you feel life out of focus always return to the basic of life – Breathing

    That’s true for every case. Breath through your life, breath in happiness breath out sadness.

  20. Ted Talk: Watch a Ted talk daily. There is a lot that you can learn from smart people who have brilliant ideas and discoveries to share. There are talks that range between 5–20 minutes so choose one everyday. By the end of the month, you would have benefited more.

  21. Research: Get into the habit of finding out about stuff on your own. Research extensively on the internet about topics that interest you and about how stuff works. You can use Google Scholar for authentic information. Learn something new everyday, dedicate at least 30 mins to it. Also, share your knowledge and teach it to others as you learn more by doing/execution/implementation.

  22. Reading: As always mentioned, reading is important and healthy for your aging brain. Whether it is a book, newspaper article or articles online, for instance, Huffington Post, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Reader’s Digest & Narrative Magazine, Success Magazine, New York Times, Time Magazine, make it a daily habit. Furthermore, look up new words in the dictionary. Download a good dictionary app and it would be less time-consuming to find the meaning of unfamiliar words/expressions. Oprah Winfrey once mentioned that she always preferred reading a book than watching TV.

  23. Language: You can use the Duolingo or Babbel apps to get started. It gets you acquainted with different people, cultures and words. It opens your mind to new experiences. It also helps enhance your communication skills.

  24. Online Courses: This is another way of learning about topics and developing your skills. You can browse through courses and enroll in one that interests you then move on to the next. Websites such as, Coursera, Alison, MIT open courses & Khan Academy are excellent for this purpose. Apps like Curiosity and Blinkist are also helpful in this regard. Curiosity sends 5 articles daily, related to different subjects. In Blinkist, you get to read a few chapters from a non-fiction book everyday!

  25. People: Go out, hang out with people. Hang out with those who are smarter. Be open to meeting new people. Get to know others. Every person is coming from a different background, perspective and experiences. You can learn a lot from them.
  26. Reduce social media usage: Just like TV, limit the amount of time using social media. That time can better be spent watching a Ted talk or reading.
21
Mar
2014
0

7 rules to change your life for the better

There can be many rules you can made according to the situation or in which direction you want your life to go by. Let’s read a story featured on Quora by Shovan Chowdhury

I desperately looked for a job after 2 years of unemployment life. But in the interview board My interviewer told me, “Sorry, we need a more skilled and experienced person ’’.

I proposed a girl and she told me “I will marry him who is very handsome, interesting and highly successful in his career. You are a good man but you are not that type”. I struggled with depression throughout my life. I failed, got rejected and insulted several times. I have accepted my failures, pause button to my life, refresh my memory and decided to change myself. I have been following 7 rules for one year to change my life better-

  1. My life, my rules : I am not influenced by society to choose my career. Society prefers high paid and secured job. Moreover, most of the people in the society are chasing money. I have heard all the career advices of my parents, relatives and friends. Then, I follow the advice of my inner self. I have some passion and I am working on it. I always prefer to my interest and dedication to choose my career. I do what I love. There will be no regret in near future because I am responsible for my actions. I have started to work what I love most.
  2. Meditation is my power : Mental strength is very important. We always focus on physical strength. But mental strength makes our life focused, planned and goal-oriented. I meditate every day to make life easy and free from distraction. It gives me mental pleasure. I am fighting with each and every problem of life despite hundreds of failures. Meditation gives me courage and determination to work against the current.
  3. No more virtual life, only real life exists : Now I emphasize more on real life rather than virtual life. I have limited my online activities. I used to spend too much time behind the computer screen and smartphone. So, I have changed that habit. I spend less time on internet. Moreover, I have started to travel, experiment new things, socialize and talk with strangers every day.
  4. Imagine to view life before the moment of death: All the materialistic thinking, fear, desire, frustration, failure will look meaningless before the death. We must die one day. So, wait for what? Take the right decision for your life, never wait for others approval. One right decision can change your life. Whenever I am in a trouble, I try to think that way. Then everything seems clear to me. I make the right choice.
  5. Withdraw myself from rat race : I have withdrawn myself from the rat race of life. It does not mean that I have lost against the difficulties of life. I don’t like to compete with other people. My all competition only with myself. Everyday, I try to top my previous day’s performance. I am chasing my passion. I am determined to reach my goal.
  6. Being anonymous on help: I love to help anonymously. It gives me pleasure. Most importantly, I always try to avoid showing off. I love to donate money to poor children families anonymously despite having financial limitations. Donating and helping people is the best part of my life. I feel extremely happy to see the smiling faces of those poor children.
  7. Write 10 gratitude list for every day : I am grateful to God whatever I get from life. I write 10 gratitude list in my journal every day. I am alive, having sound health, food to eat in fridge, have rented a flat to live, have MBA degree and job, lead an independent life, get blessings from unknown people, found my life goal, privileged to access internet 24 hours, hundreds of books to read.

A year ago I would have never guessed life would be the way it is now.