Uninspiring Blogger Jargon and Overused Phrases that You Should Avoid

Monday, August 26, 2013

By: Weston Bonnelle

Image via Flickr

the blogger lingo,
that doesn’t match the fun of bingo,
i would rather run from a dingo,
or get pecked by a flamingo,
than use this boring lingo,
did you like my bloggy jingo?

Your language and your personal vocabulary have a major impact on how you view life. In fact language affects culture because it defines our emotions, social world and objects. Some phrases are not translatable. This results in one culture holding unique views about life that other cultures can’t comprehend. For example, Greece developed the origins for the term “democracy.” This single term, “dēmokratía” which means rule of the people, changed the course of history and spread freedom from dictatorship across the modern world.

The words that you use to describe your industry and profession also play a role in how your conduct business. If you use uninspiring, overused words and phrases to define your industry, your professional endeavors may share the same lackluster characteristics. I’ve noticed that there are several popular phrases in the blogosphere that may trap some new bloggers. However, by eliminating these terms from their vocabulary, they could save their blog.

Niche – Wikipedia defines niche as “the subset of the market on which a specific product is focusing.” This is a popular term that bloggers and affiliate marketers love to tout around. A majority of the top blogs about blogs are proclaiming from the hill tops “Find your niche!!”

However I have a different take on this. First you need identify your audience. Then you need to contemplate your mission, be honest about your passion, develop the personality of your blog and create engaging topics. Many well-known blogger experts direct you to find your golden niche. However niches can be too suffocating. What you want do to instead is create the golden brand. I say, be innovative! Come up with your own niche. Google didn’t go around chasing niches; their mission was to organize the internet. Steve Jobs wasn’t sitting around thinking…”hummm which niche should I chase??” instead he followed his passion and became competition for IBM.

Content – Content is actually a pretty handy word. It’s great for referring to all forms of media. However whenever I am writing, I don’t think…"time update my blog with more content.” I believe it’s more effective to view your media in the same way that your audience does. When an audience is finished reading a prolific novel or watching an enchanting movie, they don’t say “whoa, that was great content!” Instead there are specific elements of the novel or movie that the audience has fallen in love with. Maybe it was the characters, the actors, or the songs or perhaps the story line. What can you make your audience fall in love with?

Also, the word, “content” is bland and seems to remove all differentiation between media. You don’t want your blog to be bland. You are a blogger, therefore you are writing blog posts not just content. You should be asking, what type of blog post am I writing? Will it be more journalistic, it is personable, it is satire or it is an interview?

If you are doing a video, once again it’s not just content. It’s about whether you posting this video on YouTube, Viddy, Vimeo or offline. It’s about the differences between those audiences. It’s about your personality shining on this platform and your audiences getting to know you. I would rather you refer to your writing and the media you produce as art, than content. Yes, it’s a bit lofty, but art reminds you to display culture, provide meaning and have powerful expression.

Call to Action – Have you seen those horribly design pages, with bright colors and a huge button that says “BUY NOW!!” or “CLICK NOW TO DOWNLOAD EBOOK!!”? I have and it’s never a pretty or inspiring sight. When you have a genuine connection with your readers and viewers, they automatically want to extend the connection. If you have a great blog, people will want to purchase your book for more exclusive thoughts from you. Of course, you may have an extra step that you want your audience to take. However, you aren’t entitled to anyone’s action. But you can inspire other to take the next step by offering value. You also can have a strategically designed page or blog that helps your audience take the next step.

Monetize- Overall I think that the word monetize is extremely lazy. The word monetize causes me to imagine bloggers attempting to "passively" earn money from poorly done articles. If you can’t think of a creative way to earn money from your articles perhaps you shouldn’t be freelancing. You really should be thinking “how can I expand the brand? How can I create an adventure?” For example, Disney was able to develop an entire empire from his studios. He wanted to provide a family experience for his audience. He wasn’t sitting around confused about monetization.

Modern bloggers forget the term starving artist and expect to earn too much too soon. When I think of a starving artist, I think of a person that has sacrificed so much and now they are desperate to earn a living. I don’t think of them casually asking, “I’ve sacrificed my life for my art…I wonder how I will monetize this.” Instead there was this huge conflict between maintaining their sense of self, pursuing their passion and having enough money to eat the next day. There is a depth in Edgar Allan Poe’s literature that captures the hearts of people worldwide yet he struggled financially. Do you really deserve to “monetize” your work? Then get creative.

Traffic- The word “traffic” gives me the image of numbers without feelings, emotions or a personal story checking out your blog. However people are not just numbers, they are complex beings that are scrutinizing your work. They are people looking for entertainment, inspiration, information and an experience to share with their loved ones.

The word can also be intimidating for new bloggers. They think “wait I need how much traffic to make money??!!!?” Instead, new bloggers should be thinking about how many individuals they can make fall in love with their blog posts. It’s all about how you are making individuals feel. It’s not just about getting “traffic.” If you can make hundreds, thousands and even millions of individuals happy then you’ve achieved your goal.

Now.. Are you ready to change to the course of your history?