This guest post on using swearing on your blog was written by Justin Dupre from Blogosis.
I’m thinking of a word that starts with F- and ends in U-C-K. There are two answers to this. If you are the good blogger, which I know you all are, (Italics for emphasis, people) you would know I’m thinking of a “fire-truck.” Of course, 99.9 percent of you thought different.
Blogging using cuss words has become a trend for some new bloggers hitting the scene, but I’m wondering is it really to any avail? I want to take this time on Problogger to analyze the pros and cons of putting the S-word, B-word, or any other X-word that might be whispered into your eat by that devil on your shoulder.
Let’s start with the pros of blogging without cussing:
- Your blog will have a friendlier, less hostile look. Saying a swear word creates a more hostile atmosphere to the sentence you have just said. This applies to blogging, as well. Keeping your blog friendly encourages people to enter and comment.
- Your blog will be appropriate for all ages of your audience. Some niches have readers from all age groups, kids under 10 to grandparents in their 60s and up. If you were 12, how would your mother feel if she caught you reading a blog that dropped the eff-bomb every other word? I can tell you little Carlo (from Carlocab.com) would not be reading you. Your grandparents might be downright appalled if they stumbled upon one of your blatant attempts to show off your swearing vocabulary (that is, assuming they know how to use Stumble Upon).
- Your blog will be more appealing to those who have strict religious beliefs. I don’t want to go too far into this because this always causes problem, but those that believe in a god might be shocked by some words bloggers use in their articles. This population is huge, too, so if you avoid swearing you can attract them to subscribe, as well.
Pro’s of using those naughty words:
- It is easier to attract a younger audience! This is a bit odd, but some children are just learning these kinds of words. If you show them how to use these words to effectively get link-bait, or how to offend Google for screwing you over again, you might just have them hooked. (I don’t condone showing children how to swear. These are just the facts, baby)
- Most users online are well accustomed to this kind of language. If you haven’t been hearing the F-word since you were 6-years old, you aren’t from an English-speaking country, or your father locked you in your basement/room/closet as a child. We’ve heard it on the television, movies, plenty of YoutTube videos, and if you want to check out iTunes you can download the latest Snoop Dog album to gain some more knowledge in this phenomenon. Cuss words are a part of our society.
- Using bad words makes it easier to find your voice. In any kind of writing, you need to find a unique voice. There are less bloggers that I watch in my niche that use a foul-mouth (-fingers?). When something is less common, and you do that less common thing, you are (more) unique! Revelation, isn’t it folks.
I don’t particularly enjoy swearing on my blog, Blogosis. I might throw in an ‘a$$’ or a ‘I3!tch’ every once and a while, but I don’t overdo it. I want to keep my blog open to the widest audience I can. I have studied the demographics of my audience, and a little more than about 60% is in their 20s-30s. They are well aware that all these words are part of daily vocabulary, and probably part of theirs. It is kind of a toss-up. You can swear and cuss your head off, or just avoid it. The easy choice would be to let my hands run wild but I attempt to be a little more retained than that (unless I am talking about Google.)
In order to gain my unique voice, I write a little more alternatively than others in the ‘blogging/writing’ niche. Every once in a while I might write extremely intellectual posts, but I attempt to keep it fresh with humor (which I hope you’ve experienced here). There are plenty of other alternatives to get the same effect as swearing might for some blogs (minus the offensive attitude they admit). Let me make a list:
- Make it funny. That’s easy. Put a joke in, make fun of Google, or tease another blogger (I choose you, Carlo-mon. Kids are fun). Keep it playful, though. Jokes can get offensive, too.
- Make a reader smile. Make someone excited to be able to read your post. I love to hear my friends smiled over something I wrote to them.
- Write about or from something that inspires you. People love to hear what inspires others, because we are always searching for our true inspiration (It is like the question of life, constantly challenging us).
What does Darren tell you in every post? Write original content, write original content, and oh yeah! Write original content. This is the only way you will be successful, so stop linking to bigger blogs that will never notice you, and start some creative blogging!
Whether or not you want to swear is completely up to you, but before you drop the nuke of all destructive words, know your blog’s demographics which you are blogging for. Dropping that bomb on them may lead to a bomb destroying your subscriber count.