How many times have you thought about doing something only to shoot yourself down with the old “I’m not good enough” rhetoric?

The fear of failure or not being the “best” at something can sometimes paralyze even the best laid plans. This is especially true in the field of technology where stars are born virtually overnight. Do yourself a favor and get over it. Write what you know. Focus on the quality of your online engagement and not the quantity of your “fan base”.

In this day and age it seems like everyone from new moms to disgruntled consumers are using the web as a platform for their personal musings. Celebrities, pre-teens, professionals, and even animals (Funny Dog Blog, anyone?) are enjoying the attention that comes from sharing your thoughts en masse, instantaneously. These blogs range from the mundane to the hilarious and thousands of new “experts” are joining the blogosphere each and every day.  While some blogs are definitely better than others (with numerous high quality and informative options out there) these are not necessarily the blogs that enjoy the most “success” in terms of page views, sharing, etc.

I was having a conversation with a friend of mine the other day, and the subject of blogging came up. A little background here: my friend is a professional, well respected in his field, and a constant source of knowledge and advice for his co-workers. Many would call him a “go-to” kind of guy; a problem solver who is also accessible. In other words, exactly the kind of person you would want to get guidance from. So imagine my surprise when he told me he lacked the confidence to develop a blog. He explained that he had tried a few times but always stopped because he kept asking himself the same question “why would anyone want to hear about me and my ideas?”  Obviously, he didn’t feel his opinions or experience were significant enough for others to read about.

The reason why? My friend exists in what can be referred to as the “the blockbuster generation”. In the blockbuster generation, people are conditioned to believe that everything needs to be a hit. It needs to be mass market. Anything less 1 million views is considered a failure. However, the reality is that very few blogs actually fall into this category. For every Mashable there are thousands of individuals investing time and effort into sustaining webpages that very few people will ever read, let alone appreciate. Not that my friend aspires to be the next Guy Kawasaki – he is simply a professional guy who thought he could help some people.

So how can my friend and other reluctant bloggers get over their insecurities about not being a “hit”? By focusing on their strengths and writing about what they know best. You can’t be everything to everyone, so blogging about a specialized topic to a small audience is a much better approach (especially starting out). When you write to these types of audiences you can be very specific in your material and they are usually more loyal readers. You just need to be fine with the possibility of only getting something like 500 visitors per month (or less). It’s not that you are a failure; it’s just that your market may only be that size. So next time don’t question “why would anyone want to read my stuff”, instead ask yourself “who am I writing for, a blockbuster or a niche?”

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