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The Eternal Quest for Uniqueness

Unique-1What makes your Blog Different?

This is a question I think that most bloggers would do well to ask.

We’re living in a time when ‘content’ is being produced in vast quantities by large numbers of individuals and organizations.

I heard recently on the radio that the internet now contains over 800 billion documents. Whether that number has any truth to it or not I don’t know (I suspect it’s a gross underestimate) – but I do know that there is ALOT of content circulating out there and that while blogging does give individuals a voice – in reality each post is just one in several hundred billion.

So the question is – what makes your blog unique?

I’ve written about this before so won’t go into great depth about it – however it struck me today that this question is not just a one off question – it’s one that should be asked on an ongoing basis.

The problem with producing content on the web is that it’s an ever changing environment with low barriers to entry where your idea can be unique one day and just another page of a genre the next.

One last thought….

Bloggers should probably ask this same question on two levels.

  1. What makes my BLOG unique? - A question to be asked every month or two
  2. What makes this POST unique? – A daily question that focusses upon the micro task of producing a single article.

What makes your blog unique? How do you differentiate it from the masses? What other examples of unique blogs are there?

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. PXLated says:

    I think it’s really a larger question, you’ve concentrated on “content” and it is king but there is also the IA and look/feel. To me, the later two are where most blogs fail to be unique. In the physical world hardly any publications (magazines/newspapers/etc) are organized the same or look the same. They establish a “brand identity” beyond just the content. And, they present some focus, some articles are bolder/bigger and stand apart from others. Most blogs look the same and are just a sea of gray, post after post. Everything seems to have the same relevance.

    Disclaimer: I’m a designer…I don’t work in the blogsphere, I do corporate design (print/sites) where everything is custom and brand has a standing alongside content.

  2. prlinkbiz says:

    No Limits Ladies is unqiue- we didn’t mean to be- we just ARE freaks. There aren’t a lot of women who blog about business, real estate and investing to become financially free. We find ourselves always stirring the pot with our ideas and irreverent style of writing. And that’s the way we like it. If by us having fun we can help others as well, then we have accomplished what we set out to do!

  3. Brian says:

    Thanks for another thought provoking post Darren. As a new blogger, it’s a common question. The never ending quest to be different. I think quality of content is also a driving force to keep visitors coming back for more. If you can raise the level of interest or uniqueness frequently, then you will attract new visitors.

  4. Glen says:

    What makes my blogs different is that I am a man that is blogging about Plus Size Fashion and lingeire. Chosing a niche that is related to plus size issues that is not a full size acceptance page makes me stick out but be isolated at the same time. Its not like there are hundreds of news items that come out related to plus size and plus size related issues. My commitment to my cause is what makes my blog different.

  5. anon says:

    my blog is on beauty products i dunno how to make that unique….. :S :(

  6. Bill McRea says:

    Pretty much every topic in the world has been covered. The only thing I think can be unique about a blog is the person that is doing the blogging. YOU in other words.

    If people like what you say and how you say it, you will be unique and interesting.

  7. Susan Weiner says:

    I agree that being unique is a challenge in today’s blogosphere — especially with so many cross-postings. When I see so many posts hyping the same articles by the same authors, I wonder how bloggers can distinguish themselves.

    Part of how you distinguish yourself must be your point of view. For example, in my blog at susancfa.blogspot.com, I’m unusual as a CFA (chartered financial analyst) who blogs. That blog targets a very narrow niche.

    I struggle with how to distinguish myself in my blog at susanghostwriter.blogspot.com. The only thing that distinguishes that blog is that it only posts information that interests me. But I reckon it could just as easily interest a broad range of people. I think of that blog as a convenient place to share information with my clients, prospects and e-newsletter subscribers.

  8. Dee Stewart says:

    What makes your blog unique? How do you differentiate it from the masses? What other examples of unique blogs are there?

    I had already established myself an authority in my field before I began blogging. So when my blog went up I already had subscribers waiting. Gospel Fiction- a term I coined is only five years old among christian publishing. Publishing houses and editors come to my site to see what’s going on in this particular genre because they are still out of the loop about it.

    I’m different from the masses, because not only do I talk about what’s current in christian publishing, but I always have new content to add that no one else will have until I after I present it. I’m a journalist and publicist, so I get the gospel news first. And the fact that I live in Atlanta, GA, where a great deal of the power players in our industry live and work I get first dibs on a lot of stuff. And I’m a Democrat, which isn’t the norm for most Christians. :)

    Other blogs that are unique?

    Faith*in*fiction.blogspot.com

    Dave Long the owner of the blog is an AE for Bethany House publishers. He’s very candid about the state of christian publishing and hosts a forum that has become a bonafide group of award winning christian authors.

    Mashable.com

    I like to read what’s new in social networking platforms.

  9. dcypl says:

    I’m just contemplating starting a new blog in a market where there are not many blogs, and those that are there aren’t very well done. Uniqueness shouldn’t be too hard here! But I’m asking myself, is the market ready for blogs? (No it’s not wheel chair bound nursing home residents, but I have blogged about them before!)

    Certainly writing about this isn’t a new concept, but blogging it is. Hopefully it will be unique enough to stand out .

  10. wilson ng says:

    wouldn’t it be a more relevant goal to ask, ” what makes my blog meaningful?”

  11. …Or … How can my blog make a difference?…A positive impact and a lasting one! That should be our goal to every post we write…to entice readers to go back and check if anything new will impact ones life in a better way!

  12. Mark Spivey says:

    I’m fairly new to this, but nothing is more offputting than a blog with no pictures or illustrations to brighten it up and hold the reader’s attention.
    So I would have to say this is a key.
    Also helpful tips for the day (they needn’t be long).
    Not too many banners – easy to read articles with a personal touch.
    My next step will be to incorporate streaming video and audio to actually illustrate some of my content.

  13. Marc says:

    I’m in definite agreement with the previous post. Too many blogs have the linear scroll paper look. Need some more right brain visual candy to break up all that unrelenting left brain verbal stuff.

    I’m not sure that basing a blog on the uniqueness of your personality will always work for everyone. It may not be enough to make you stand out. The uniqueness inherent in snow flakes or in blades of grass is what we’re talking about here and that probably won’t make the cut.

  14. wow gold says:

    One of the few guys actually making money from this blogging thing had a bad feeling about the new GooglePages AdSense. I can’t say as I’m in the same camp, considering how ridiculously difficult it is to even get GooglePages to work….

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Of the many blogs that dot the net, I’m particularly partial to those of Darren Rowse and Matt Cutts. As I write this piece, I notice that Darren’s last post coincidentally deals on this very subject – what makes your blog unique?. Darren is a prolific writer and posts several write-ups everyday. Matt Cutts’ blog – one may argue – is popular because he works in Google. But then other Google employees too have their blogs, but Matt’s is more referred to, which obviously means his blog appeals more to readers. [...]