What Is the Focus and Purpose of Your Blog

bullseye Ask yourself that question: what is the focus and the purpose of my blog?

(If you’re blogging for pleasure or your own entertainment, skip this post and read any of these wonderful stories.)

Is the purpose of your blog easy to define? What are you aiming towards accomplishing with it? How are you testing whether or not you’re reaching your desired effect?

My blog has changed a lot over the years. At first, I blogged just for pleasure. Then, I realized that I was developing a community, and that my community wanted some consistent, useful information, so somewhere around a few years ago, things started to make more sense. Here’s a little bit of the backstory.

My Blog’s Many Faces

When I started my blog many years ago (it skittered across several domains before I landed in “real” blog software), it was for fiction. I wrote stories. Then, I wrote about fitness and nutrition. Then, I wrote about self-improvement. Then, I wrote about new media. I went from that into writing about social networks and social media, and then eventually, I moved into how businesses could use social media to improve.

What am I writing about these days? Human business. It’s essentially the idea that relationships and human-shaped experiences serve business much better than cold marketing and afterthought customer service.

What will I write about next? I’m planning some changes to [chrisbrogan.com] in the near term. My redesign by Snowy Day Design is just the beginning, and you’ll be invited along for the ride. That said, I won’t change direction too far afield. You’ll most likely still like it.

Keeping a Focus and a Purpose

Your blog is a media property. It’s also a tool that allows you to build relationships (should that be of interest), to notify and inform (if you like telling the news), to reflect and react (if you like being a commentator), to report (if that’s something you enjoy doing), or a tool to educate, instruct, or establish thought leadership. It can be a call to action, a lead generator, a showcase for your talents, and many other things.

The question is: what will you choose as your focus, and how do you define its purpose?

Can you blog without purpose? Absolutely. Can you unfocus your blog? It happens all the time.

But your community (or your audience, if you’re not as close to them) are there with an expectation. They are seeking whatever it is you’ve been offering along the way. They want your best, and they want your material to enlighten, entertain, inform, inspire, or any of several other functions.

With that in mind, and accepting that things change over time, my question remains: what is the focus and purpose of your blog?

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  • Hlwhorf

    This blob was amazing! I got out of this that you have to stick with what you are talking about. That is so important because if you are talking about the media but then you start talking about something else you might lose readers. Also, changing topics are sometimes not bad because of your voice is still the same. This was a lot of help thank you!

  • Paul M.

    Out of this blog  I got the useful info. that you want us to be able to have a purpose in anything, to have a successful post. If an individual does not have a purpose with an audience then there is a choice:
    Do you want a blog with information or do you want a blog with off topic oddities  that are funny?

  • Joshbattistelli14

    i think this blog is very informational.  i think he was saying it is ok to go offf topic but not to off topic.  this is a succesful blog and readers should look at this.

  • Bergmannrebecca

    This is 100% true. People who blog for fun don’t truly have a purpose, topic, to blog about, they just talk about random things like talking about soccer to talking about food. Way off topic. So people should have a main topic.

  • Lauren G

    Dear Chris,
    I think that this post cleared up the lines between what is appropriate and what isn’t when trying to stick to a topic when blogging. While it is okay to occasionally stray from your main topic, you need to mainly stay within the focus of the blog. Also, it can be confusing and misleading when a blog is often changing its purpose. Thank you for making this clear! I agree completely with you.

  • Scottberthel

    What I think about this blog was that you should keep your topics simalar to what your whole blog is about but you can go off topic but not for a long period of time.

  • Seacoastlax27

    I as a new blogger, now know that when I am blogging to stay with one topic. The people that are following my blog are there because they are interested in the topic I am talking about. If my blog is about lacrosse and I start going into things that help me with lacrosse like exercise and eating, that is ok. I am still on topic and I am helping out others. If I go way too far into exercise and eating and post a couple blogs about that people will become uninterested in my blogging, because they like the topic I am talking about.

  • Laura Taylor

    I really liked this blog it was very useful. Out of this blog I got that you can go in diffrent direction with your blog. As long as you don’t go completly off topic. Also your blog doesn’t have to have to be informational it could be funny.

  • maddiep16

    I have just recently read this blog post. I totally agree with you when you say you should stay on the same topic. If you do not stick with the same topic, the blog could confuse people, and will not get across your key point. Out of this blog, I realize you can get a little off topic, but if you get too off topic, the blog may not be liked by many people. Also, to me, the purpose of blogging is to learn new things, and make relationships along the way. People usually blog about their topic of interest; therefore you will be blogging with people of the same interest. When you blog, you may meet interesting people too. If you are talking about a certain topic, and go off the topic, but you are still relating to it with an example that seems totally fine. I believe that blogging is a great way to get noticed, and people can understand things better if you stay on topic. This blog was a great help to me, and I totally agree with you.

  • Jennahill9451

    I think this is a very good blog. I liked how you say that there needs to be a purpose to create a good post. Also, I liked how you stated that its ok to go off topic and talk about certian things. But you also say that you dont want to go off topic too much. I liked that. You really described all the topics in this post and I loved that because it made it much more easier to read and understand. It also kept me entertained, focused, and awake throughout it.

  • Alally14

    I agree with this 100 percent and really strongly think this is a good thing. You should be able to really have a purpose and want to be serious. You also can blog for fun and go a little off topic and have fun with it. You should stay on topic most of the time on your blog. Also you could still have a lot of fun with it.

  • Cjbowen97

    The purpose of a blog is to have a purpose of what you want to talk about or what point you want or need to get across. So before you get your blog really going you should really know what you want to share and talk about. You can go off topic a little but you don’t want to talk about something totally different than what you blog is about. People might still comment on you but you’ll proubly not get as many. For example if I’m talking about hiking and then talk about something that you can do outside that would be okay once in a while but that if you branch off even more it won’t be the best thing to do for your blog.

  • http://caileeg.trms.blogspot.com/ Caileeg8

    I agree with this blog completely.  For starters, I do believe that is important to develop a general theme or purpose for your blog.  This is absolutely ardent to the atmosphere you are attempting to create in your online community.  However, I also believe that it is important to change up the general flow of your blog every now and then to keep the readers both interested and enlightened.

  • Mmckracherne16

    After reading this, I began thinking about my own blog and what the focus of it really is. Honestly, I’m not sure what my blog will be about, and I believe that, like this blog says, I will start out a little scattered with my topic. I agree though, eventually with the feedback I do receive will impact what my topic really does turn into and hopefully stay as. This is a very good blog, and it really got me thinking.

  • Musicqueen0621

    This blog was really helpful and fascinating! I learned a lot about how my blog should be about what I want to talk about, but how you definitely also need to figure out your main topic. Once you figure out your main topic, you will gain more of an audience of people who like or have an interest in the same thing as you. In this blog, I got the impression that you were trying to give us tips on the topics of our blog and also how we can write about different topics and still get comments. But, the main thing was to tell us that we should choose one topic for our blog. I also noticed that you told us that when we are writing, we need to stay focused because blogs can very easily become off topic. You also need to keep in mind the purpose of the blog; why you are writing it, and what you are writing your blog for. If you keep your blog on the same topic and have the same purpose, you will get more followers, subscribers, and comments from people who are interested in the same thing as you. I really thought this blog was very helpful and gave a lot of tips to keep a focused, but interesting blog.

  • ozzy1239

    Reading this blog post really made me think about my blog. At the begging I didn’t truly have a topic but then I started looking and I found that I really did have a topic without even realizing it. Most of the time to all of the time I was talking about one thing which was fishing. And after reading this I understand having one topic will get you a specific audience base which I want.

  • Cjz

    I didn’t get your message in this post. i understood that at first you just bloged for fun but after that i got lost. i didn’t understand it and was confused after reading this. i think if you made it simpler it would be easyer for me to read

  • jarrett

    this blog taught me that i can go off topic a little but not alot. you should mainly keep on topic most of the time but it is ok to go off topic a little if you go right back to what you were talking about.

  • Chad Ripley

    Dear Chris,
    Reading this blog post got me thinking about my future of blogging. You said that you should keep the blog’s to a main subject like keep it to one thing and things that have to do with it. I like that because if i blog about my favorite thing then I will want to probably talk about something that has to do with it. I like how you said that if you get too off topic then your audience might not want to keep reading your stuff because your talking about one thing and then out of now where you start talking about how something else happened. All in all it gave me useful tips to how to keep my blog going.

  • Mariapanakis1234

    Reading this blog post made me thinking if i even did good on my blog. I know that I wrote what i thought and all, but I really think that I should’ve wroten more about what I thought and felt about that blog post. This was an inspiration what I will do next on my blog and how I should state my thinking. This is just a point of view to me and how good blogs are suppose to be. Also, after reading this I hope that you do get to understand and I understand how to write more on my blog!

  • melissa

    this blog was help full to read and indicate what bloging is about. also how it was saying each time you blog about something the blog it self gets a little beter each time and more poeple will be able to conect with what your saing. also to writ a more intoresting blog you need facts and opinois. this blog was riten like the bloger was very experenst.

  • Chris cav 2

    Dear Chris,
    I thought this blog was very helpful and also well written. I do agree with you when you say you should focus on one specific thing. The reason why I also think that is because people are going to read your blogs and follow them for the certain thing that you mainly blog about. The thing that I am going to blog about mostly is soccer and maybe a little bit of skiing. The reasons why I picked to specific subjects is because I love both of them and I know a lot about both of them.

  • Arlyss

    This blog was really helpful because it told the reader not only what they did with there blog but how to write good blogs yourself. What i got out of this is that you can have a blog with out a purpouse and thats ok.Also i taked about how you can change subjects within your blog. Another thing is that it at the top explains a lot about how to write it . I thought the blog was very good.

  • Jordanditore

    Well I have not even posted a blog yet. But I have written one, and it’s about Eminem. My whole purpose for the blog was to make it about entertainment, like movies, music, ext, but after reading this I not sure if I’m going to stick to that. Like you said “Can you unfocus your blog? It happens all the time.” So now I’m going to write about anything on my mind. It may be about entertainment, but I might write about school or a bad day. I going to write about anything that’s on my mind.

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