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Why You Don’t Need a Target Audience to Start a Blog

Never-give-up-for-that__quotes-by-Harriet-Beecher-Stowe-32-612x612Well, I know this post will be controversial, but I speak from my own personal experience.

Starting a blog is like starting a business. At the end of the day, it’s your visitors, your customers and your prospects who tell you what your business should be as they ask for what they want from you.

When I started my business, I set out to write copy and create beautiful brochures, business cards and logos for local small businesses. I did those things, but my customers demanded that I help them with their websites. They paid me to learn the web design business, in fact. When I learned web design, whoosh! My business took off.

Web design is a whole different “thang” from print design. Very different.

You see, the thing is, I did have a target audience starting this blog. But as I wrote, as I did what I do, it became clear that my audience was another group.

My point is that it’s okay to dive in even though you don’t know for certain who you’re talking to. You can always course correct along the way.

Your visitors, customers, and prospects tell you what your business should be. Click To Tweet

I’m betting that my audience is the make-money-online newbies who want to know how to do things, what things to do, and how to take shortcuts.

In fact, I’m so confident of that bet, I’m going to make changes to this blog.

I’m ready to have some fun along the way. Fun isn’t something I saw much of as a child, so I’m ready to let loose and let it spill over into my work.

17 thoughts on “Why You Don’t Need a Target Audience to Start a Blog”

  1. Roy Miller says:

    Barbara, I enjoyed your story about your journey. It was interesting to see the turn you made. It appears that it was a successful journey for you. I took the bait, and signed up so I could not receive anything! Good technique?
    Roy Miller recently posted…Shiny ObjectsMy Profile

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Roy – I’m delighted you did sign up! Now that your first comment is approved, your comments will appear automatically going forward. I notice you were moved to talk about Bright Shiny Object syndrome on your blog! I’ll be opening my new BSO Recovery Program soon. It’s a free service I’m proud of. Look for more on that, to follow.

  2. Sue says:

    Haha, Barbara – how did you guess?

    I’m one of the newbies who want to know how to do things, what things to do, and how to take shortcuts – and what better way than to learn from someone who has learnt it all, but most importantly, willing to share it all!

    Just love this – and ready for some fun too!

    To your FUNtastic success!

    Sue recently posted…Pre-WMN vs: Post-WMNMy Profile

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      I’m delighted you’re on the path that I’m on! As long as you’re along, it WILL be fun!

  3. Desana says:

    Hi Barbara,
    I will be on the lookout for the Wednesday email! 🙂 and the changes you’re going to make on your blog. I am quite new in this kind of business and I agree with you. You’re definitely right that your audience (referring to myself) come to your blog for the “how to’s” and motivation 🙂 I like the controversy in your post. Wish you a great day and a lot of fun with the changes you’re going to make.

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Desana – so glad you’re on board! Motivation is so important when you’re isolated and working on your own. As Dr. Ben Adkins once said in a salesletter somewhere, we’re often “doing things we’ve never done before!”

  4. Keith Reilly says:

    I agree that you ‘can’ start a blog without knowing who your target audience is, ab ‘blog’ is short for ‘web log’. Basically an online diary. The majority of the early blogs were just that, and a lot continue to be. It’s easy to go to the search engines and find people’s blogs where they just ramble on about their daily life.
    But you won’t truly get an audience and monetise your blog until you start to concentrate on one subject, narrow down the niche that you write about. Like you say Barbara, you can get started and figure that out later, but the sooner you figure it out, the quicker you’ll find your audience.
    Keith Reilly recently posted…Did You Know Windows 10 Has A Hidden Menu?My Profile

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Yes, good points, Keith! Exactly why I’ll be making changes here and I should mention that. My purpose was to jolt some that may be hesitant to start a blog, that it’s really okay to just dive in.

  5. Duane Reeve says:

    Hi Barbara
    My first online job was updating and maintaining a Real Estate firms website using a ‘ColdFusion’ platform. All I did was upload new properties on the clients website and ensure these were listed on local classified ad sites. When I tried to get more Real Estate clients, to do the same thing, I was asked if I do website design… and that’s how I got started with WordPress (after trying Joomla for a while).

    Redirection and listening to what your potential clients want is the key to success. Now, It’s WordPress & SEO and a little Social Media Marketing as these are so closely linked these days.

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Ah, that’s how you started, Duane! Yeah, and of course, you’ve fine-tuned along the way. Your comment, “Redirection and listening to what your potential clients want is the key to success,” shows why it would be so much more difficult to attempt that as a large company. This is the perfect era for the solo-preneur!

  6. David Wildash says:

    Nice post. Being able to respond quickly to your audience and change the direction of your business is one of the few advantages us solopreneurs have over larger businesses.

    You’ve also piqued my intrest as to the changes you’ll be making and I love the different approach of your optin box. Can I ask that you make a future post on how well it works and whether people enjoy the fact they’ve been ‘given nothing to download’?
    David Wildash recently posted…Is That Shiny Object Or Webinar Worth Your Attention?My Profile

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Absolutely, David! I will definitely have a follow up post or two about this experiment. And thank you for the kind words.

  7. Art says:

    Hi Barbara,

    Yes, very controversial post, I can see where others my disagree, but it’s ok to agree to disagree, it’s ok to be different and stir up the pot. I think by doing this it will bring attention to your post, both pro and con. I love it! It’s like you’re in tune with yourself and your readers.

    Keep up the good work,

    Art recently posted…7 Tools for Internet Marketers — Which Are You Not Using? ( Part #1)My Profile

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Art – we’re definitely on the same page. You’ve reminded me to proceed with one I’ve needed to write for a while. Thank you so much for your support! You’re auto-approved now, so you’ll have no-waiting on your next comments.

  8. Roger MacRae says:

    Love your story. It’s good for people to see how simple it can be to have new skills sponsored. Can’t wait to see how that translates to the changes for your site.
    Roger MacRae recently posted…Why Picking a Niche is Holding You BackMy Profile

    1. Barbara O'Toole says:

      Roger – thanks so much for your comment! I’m looking forward to those changes on my site too. I’m sure they’ll manifest soon! LOL

  9. Barbara Dowling says:

    Hi Barbara,

    I can see your point exactly…as I am doing the same thing. I am happy to have started a blog and enjoy the writing but I have not fine tuned my niche yet. I do agree with some of the comments that we will get more business when we focus on the niche, and the fine tuned niche audience will tell us what they want and we in turn can sell them what they want! Looking forward to seeing your changes…
    Barbara Dowling recently posted…Add Content to your BlogMy Profile

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