Being Real On Your Blog Is Always Better Than Being Perfect
Bad stuff happens to everyone at some point or you aren’t really living, right?
But that bad stuff can be the key to success.
The one upside to bad stuff is that it can make for excellent content that will really help you connect with your audience. The fact that you had a relatable obstacle and you overcame it is inspiring to people having exactly those problems right now. Imperfection is far more comfortable and relatable than someone who seems like they stepped out of a fairy tale.
Here are some reasons that bad stuff can be good for business.
Lots of times, people who are “internet famous” are really embarrassed when things go wrong in their lives. We can put a lot of pressure on ourselves by trying to present a perfect front to our readers. And somethings, when we do that, we’re doing it wrong.
Here are just a few of the reasons that you shouldn’t hide all the bad stuff.
- It makes you more human, instead of this Pinterest-perfect individual with a charmed life that everyone secretly wants to punch in the throat.
- It shows your resilience and provides concrete ways to get past these obstacles and on with your life.
- By demonstrating that you have been through it, it proves that you will have empathy when helping them through it.
- It helps you to connect with your audience. Even if they haven’t had the same problems, they are going to see you as a friend instead of some internet celebrity.
- If you have a product to sell that relates to this issue, better still. You have proven that you can overcome it, and you can help them too.
So, maybe it’s time to let go of that perfect image you’re trying to create and lighten up on yourself. It not only gives you a break, but it helps your readers because they are constantly being presented with impossible standards here in Internetland.
Caveat: This doesn’t mean you should start whining non-stop.
Don’t use this as an excuse to go all Drama Llama. That’s what I call those people on social media who share every moment of their day, every negative thing that anyone ever says about them, every fender bender, every pimple, every sniffly nose. Admit it, you know a Drama Llama too.
Well, don’t be one. Because while imperfection is good for business, whining is NOT.
Nobody wants to give their money or their time to someone who just complains all the time. No one wants to take advice from someone who is a constant screw-up.
You have to use this in small doses and offer solutions. Don’t just complain.
But used occasionally, it can be very powerful to let people see the real you.
If most of your content is positive, a bit of vulnerability demonstrates how life happens to all of us. It makes you a thousand times more accessible and real than those people who are distant, picture perfect, and won’t ever answer your emails or like your comments. It shows that you had challenges and you overcame them. (I usually post about these things after they’ve been resolved so I can provide that bit of hope.)
Over the 5 years I’ve been blogging, I’ve shared the fact that I was once on welfare for 3 months (which is something quite frowned upon by my particular audience), that when my kids were little we were dig-food-out-of-the-garbage-poor, that I lost a loved one, that my home was foreclosed on, that I had a terrible hiking accident and fell down a mountain, and that I had a long-term illness that I had kept hidden from my audience. Those are some of the posts that got the most traffic, the most love, and the ones that people told me made them lifelong readers.
If you’re having a rough time right now, I hope this helps. Stop trying to present Perfect You to the world. Write this down and remember it, because this is advice from the heart:
BEING REAL IS ALWAYS BETTER THAN BEING PERFECT.