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10 Blogging Hats

I was talking this morning with a clients team members. One is an SEO, the other a designer. My role on the project is to write, research and promote the blog.

It struck me how many jobs a solo-blogger has. Do you ever think about how many hats you have to wear as a blogger?

Blogging is called just “blogging” but really it’s not one thing is it? It involves lots of small jobs, being able to switch roles in a breath.

  1. Writing – Obviously, blogging is writing. The whole point is the content.
  2. Research – To be able to make your content the best then you will need to gather information, fact-check, be abreast of changes in your niche
  3. Topical Expertise – You will get questions and people expect answers!
  4. Networking – No blog is an island, you have to get out there and connect with your audience and the “Linkerati”
  5. Technical – Setting up your blog, keeping updated with new versions and bug-fixes, adding plugins …
  6. Design – Tweaking templates, making your posts look good …
  7. Marketing – What good is great content if nobody ever sees it? You have to promote your stuff!
  8. Customer Service – So many bloggers forget that when you have a blog you are providing a service, people expect their emails and comments to get answered
  9. House Keeping – It’s not always sincere comments you receive, many times you have to clear up spam. Then there are backups to maintain, domains to renew …
  10. Learning – Last but possibly one of the most important, you have to learn all of the other nine jobs. If you are not constantly updating your knowledge of both your niche and blogging then you are falling behind and liable to miss out on opportunities

Now I didn’t write this with the intention to daunt you or put you off, but at the same time we all need to be realistic about how much work and the various abilities you need to pull off a good blog.

If you don’t have all the required skills, perhaps now is the time to partner up with people who do? πŸ™‚

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Comments

  1. Hi Chris

    I agree we wear many hats – but would see this as part of the appeal of blogging, rather than something that should put people off. It’s the variety of tasks, of roles, of hats, that for me makes it most fun, most rewarding – plus as you say gives most opportunity to learn.

    Joanna

  2. Hi Chris

    I agree we wear many hats – but would see this as part of the appeal of blogging, rather than something that should put people off. It’s the variety of tasks, of roles, of hats, that for me makes it most fun, most rewarding – plus as you say gives most opportunity to learn.

    Joanna

  3. Yes I admit the different jobs help keep me interested too, but there are people who are put off. Just look at all the people who start blogs thinking it is an easy road to riches then give up after a month or less ..

  4. Yes I admit the different jobs help keep me interested too, but there are people who are put off. Just look at all the people who start blogs thinking it is an easy road to riches then give up after a month or less ..

  5. Interesting – I never thought about it, but you’re right- a good blogger is really a Jack or Jill of all trades. This is also part of the appeal for me. Always something new to learn or tweaks to make, people to get to know, etc.

  6. Interesting – I never thought about it, but you’re right- a good blogger is really a Jack or Jill of all trades. This is also part of the appeal for me. Always something new to learn or tweaks to make, people to get to know, etc.

  7. I guess it is kind of an evolution of “webmaster”? There are a few new things that webmasters didn’t have to contend with so there is still a small distinction between webmaster and blogger πŸ™‚

  8. I guess it is kind of an evolution of “webmaster”? There are a few new things that webmasters didn’t have to contend with so there is still a small distinction between webmaster and blogger πŸ™‚

  9. You’re absolutely correct that the “blogger” is required to cover many different roles. I agree that this is part of the appeal for many people but does turn off others. It certainly is not an “easy” job like many people believe.

    Your comment about partnering up with people is something I have been giving thought to lately. Typically there are people that excel at certain roles and it would be great to combine forces with a few people to build a team that can excel in all areas.

  10. You’re absolutely correct that the “blogger” is required to cover many different roles. I agree that this is part of the appeal for many people but does turn off others. It certainly is not an “easy” job like many people believe.

    Your comment about partnering up with people is something I have been giving thought to lately. Typically there are people that excel at certain roles and it would be great to combine forces with a few people to build a team that can excel in all areas.

  11. The trying-on of different hats & continual learning of new skills is a big part of the appeal of blogging, for many of us I suspect, but the solo blogger is inevitably limited in what he/she can do simply by the limited number of hours in a day. Not to mention energy…

    Partnering is a big leap, however – many of us are just made to go it solo!

    Fortunately there’s a middle ground: guest bloggers, plugins to help with housekeeping, custom template purchase vs. tweaking… what else? I’d be extremely interested to hear how other bloggers manage to juggle those many hats, on a practical day-to-day level.

  12. The trying-on of different hats & continual learning of new skills is a big part of the appeal of blogging, for many of us I suspect, but the solo blogger is inevitably limited in what he/she can do simply by the limited number of hours in a day. Not to mention energy…

    Partnering is a big leap, however – many of us are just made to go it solo!

    Fortunately there’s a middle ground: guest bloggers, plugins to help with housekeeping, custom template purchase vs. tweaking… what else? I’d be extremely interested to hear how other bloggers manage to juggle those many hats, on a practical day-to-day level.

  13. @Derek – Even if you find one person with one skill, it is probably going to be a help. The problem is finding the right person with the right skills, not as easy as it sounds.

    @Jen – It’s probably easier and more comfortable for most people to accept whatever limitations they have and stay solo, but partnering up is a big boost for some if/when they can make it work. One of the reasons Performancing was successful at the beginning was the team, and the same is probably true for the new team also.

  14. @Derek – Even if you find one person with one skill, it is probably going to be a help. The problem is finding the right person with the right skills, not as easy as it sounds.

    @Jen – It’s probably easier and more comfortable for most people to accept whatever limitations they have and stay solo, but partnering up is a big boost for some if/when they can make it work. One of the reasons Performancing was successful at the beginning was the team, and the same is probably true for the new team also.

  15. Chris:
    Yes, blogging is really an engaging endeavor. I would like to add few more hats that bloggers have to put on:

    1. Editor – Blogger should be a good editor as paper journals or book editors
    2. Psychologist – blogger should be a good psychologist to understand the emotions of your readers and serve the content accordingly.

    Rajesh Shakya
    Helping Technopreneurs to excel and lead their life!

  16. Chris:
    Yes, blogging is really an engaging endeavor. I would like to add few more hats that bloggers have to put on:

    1. Editor – Blogger should be a good editor as paper journals or book editors
    2. Psychologist – blogger should be a good psychologist to understand the emotions of your readers and serve the content accordingly.

    Rajesh Shakya
    Helping Technopreneurs to excel and lead their life!

  17. Hi Chris:

    Good to make us realise the many skills required. It explains in part why so few large organisations succeed in launching blogs as these skills tend to be dispersed over many specialised individuals.

    Are blogs entrepreneurial projects?

    Regards,
    Hans De Keulenaer

  18. Hi Chris:

    Good to make us realise the many skills required. It explains in part why so few large organisations succeed in launching blogs as these skills tend to be dispersed over many specialised individuals.

    Are blogs entrepreneurial projects?

    Regards,
    Hans De Keulenaer

  19. @Rajesh – I was speaking to a photographer who has a psychologist on the payroll so yeah, good point πŸ™‚

    @Hans – Yes I think they are, it’s a kind of self-publishing so makes sense.

  20. @Rajesh – I was speaking to a photographer who has a psychologist on the payroll so yeah, good point πŸ™‚

    @Hans – Yes I think they are, it’s a kind of self-publishing so makes sense.

  21. I like it Chris, good post. A blogger is a teacher and a student all rolled into one.

  22. I like it Chris, good post. A blogger is a teacher and a student all rolled into one.

  23. Hi Chris,
    Great article. I would also add an 11th role as Analyst. Tracking stats like visitors, page views, referrals, links, search engine rankings, etc. can be very time consuming as well.

  24. Hi Chris,
    Great article. I would also add an 11th role as Analyst. Tracking stats like visitors, page views, referrals, links, search engine rankings, etc. can be very time consuming as well.

  25. @Chris – Aren’t all forms of marketing communication eventually a form of self-publishing. We probably could come up with the 10 roles for publishing a brochure, an application note or annual report. Yet organisations do not have trouble publishing these. Maybe the issue with blogs is that they’re still relatively new for organisations to handle them.

  26. @Chris – Aren’t all forms of marketing communication eventually a form of self-publishing. We probably could come up with the 10 roles for publishing a brochure, an application note or annual report. Yet organisations do not have trouble publishing these. Maybe the issue with blogs is that they’re still relatively new for organisations to handle them.

  27. @mark – And it’s worth remembering πŸ™‚

    @Steven – Yes, if we ignore stats we are ignoring our readers

    @Hans – How many companies have a single person do everything required for an annual report? πŸ™‚

  28. @mark – And it’s worth remembering πŸ™‚

    @Steven – Yes, if we ignore stats we are ignoring our readers

    @Hans – How many companies have a single person do everything required for an annual report? πŸ™‚

  29. @Chris – Exactly. But while many blogs are one-person projects, they do not need to be. One of my blogs http://www.leonardo-energy.org/drupal/seblog currently involves 7 people, with some wearing specific hats.

  30. @Chris – Exactly. But while many blogs are one-person projects, they do not need to be. One of my blogs http://www.leonardo-energy.org/drupal/seblog currently involves 7 people, with some wearing specific hats.

  31. @Chris – your comment about a single company doing everything for an annual report…actually, small charities and non-profits often do only have one person tagged for that role.

    They may outsource some jobs, but that individual still needs to project manage the task and is responsible for the outcome…and therefore has to be somewhat knowledgeable about the task being outsourced.

    That kind of work (and blogging), though challenging, offers incredible rewards in the form of skill development and diversity of task. Fun stuff.

  32. @Chris – your comment about a single company doing everything for an annual report…actually, small charities and non-profits often do only have one person tagged for that role.

    They may outsource some jobs, but that individual still needs to project manage the task and is responsible for the outcome…and therefore has to be somewhat knowledgeable about the task being outsourced.

    That kind of work (and blogging), though challenging, offers incredible rewards in the form of skill development and diversity of task. Fun stuff.

  33. Interesting! I hadn’t thought about blogging covering so many different aspects beforehand, but I’m still to the scene myself πŸ™‚

  34. Interesting! I hadn’t thought about blogging covering so many different aspects beforehand, but I’m still to the scene myself πŸ™‚