Blogging in 2008

looking down the road

What do I blog for?

Well, it’s a new year. It seems like everyone has been summing up their achievements from 2007 and making goals for 2008. All good things.

I’ve been thinking about the things that I want to achieve with this blog this year. Keeping this blog and my photoblog has been excellent, I love it. I also love reading about design, web design, writing and I want to improve my writing, my writing style, as well as improve my other hobbies: digital photography and image manipulation.

What do I blog about?

In amongst all this reading that I’ve been doing I keep coming up against this question: should you find a niche?

My about page says,

This and that started as a personal blog. It is still a personal blog, with some focus on my (kristarella’s) interests. They include (in approximate order of writing frequency) graphics, web design, science, Christianity, blogging, computers, television, movies, music, games.

That’s what I started this blog as and it’s what I wanted it to be. Perhaps if you think of it in terms of target audience, it means that I automatically narrowed my audience down to people who like several of the things that I like. Where as some “niche” blogs have a much larger audience, because they only serve one interest (assuming that interest is a widely spread one).

Articles that have something to say about this,

By far, my most linked to and visited post is 24 Sweet Brushes for GIMP and Photoshop. Although, it’s not the most commented on, which is understandable – what would you say? “Nice list. Thanks!” Anyway, I wonder what this says about what readers want: an easily digested list; something about digital graphics; a collection of useful or pretty things. Given how this post spread, I’m not sure that you can’t write helpful posts without being a niche blogger – somehow people find the posts anyway.

I’m asking you?

So after contemplating some of these things, I give it over to you. Do you think it’s okay to have a semi-personal blog that covers a range of topics? Would you rather I only wrote about the GIMP, or photography, or blogging, or design, or religion?

Website name

On a slightly related note. I’m thinking of changing my website/blog name from This and that. It didn’t seem as awful when I first started my little blog on Blogger 2 years ago. Now it’s another example of my inability to choose imaginative names (a toy rabbit called Bunny, a plastic ride-on horse named Horsey, a cat called Kitty and now a blog with a variety of topics called This and that).

I’m not sure what I would change the name to. kristarella.com might be as good as anything, since I’ve successfully monopolised the name kristarella across the internet.

What do you think?

Comments

  1. says

    My suggestion is the keep with the name that you made across the blogosphere. That’s your brand, your identity :D

    And I would also love it if you’d stick with what you’re doing — a personal blog is very hard to come by these days since everybody’s into niche blogging (unless you are interested to monetize this blog). I love personal touches :D

  2. says

    Thanks for your positive feedback pelf! :grin:

    I don’t think I do want to “monetize” (this must be a new nerdy web word that my spell check doesn’t pick up!) this blog. I think it would be far better to blog for the love of it and make money from other things (freelancing or whatever). If I were to make money from the internet at all.

    Hmm, so do you think that This and that or kristarella is the name I’ve made? This and that has been the name I’ve had on this blog from the beginning, but I’m not sure that anyone really connects it with me.

  3. says

    Hey now, there’s nothing wrong with generic names! My favorite stuffed animal was a bunny, also named Bunny (or Bunbun for short) :D

    The other thing you have to realize about why your brushes list was so popular is that most of the people out there even reading blogs are interested in computers and many are interested in web design, which involves graphics programs and skills. That’s probably why Digg is filled with tech-related stuff. If you wanted to focus on one topic, perhaps you’d have an audience with GIMP users! You could take popular Photoshop articles and show people how to apply them to GIMP (maybe the tools are named differently or used differently). You’d never have a shortage of post ideas, as you’d just look around for Photoshop tutorials!

    You also have to know your purpose for blogging. Is it to gain a lot of readers, traffic and money? If so, I think a niche is a definitely must. If not, then blog about what you like! Those with similar interests will find you and enjoy being online friends with you (like me and pelf!)

    I like either This and That (because it’s a multi-topic blog) or Kristarella for your blog name. I think Kristarella might be better though, because it’s your domain name and easier for people to remember when trying to find your site.

  4. says

    I personally love to read blogs that are about a variety of subjects. The niche blogs have a place also if you’re looking for something specific. But the variety kind can be for pure pleasure. Bringing a variety of ideas together for people to learn from, enjoy, and just have fun. I kinda like the Kristarella name alot. Very original. But after 2 years you should probably keep it the same.

  5. says

    Yes, you’re right about that – people spending enough time on the net are bound to be interested in computer stuff.

    It just occured to me to look at my stats and my keyword traffic sources. kristarella is close to the top, amongst all the GIMP brushes searches. This and that has much less hits, although it still has one on Dec 24 and Dec 28… and I’m fourth on the Google search for this and that, but first for kristarella. Now I’m not sure what to do :P

    Thanks for your input. Regular readers are good, but I don’t feel the need to earn money here. I don’t think I really want to go niche, unless I’m starting another blog, which I would only do if it were somewhat unique. I think my goals, sharing life while improving my writing, might not be adventurous enough for some, but I’m happy with it. :)

  6. says

    “Kristarella” is the name that you have made. But if you want to rebrand that to “This and That” you may want to start leaving comments as “Kristarella/This and That” or something to that effect.

    Otherwise people won’t know that “Kristarella” and “This and That” are one :D

  7. says

    Go with Kristarella, as your gut seems to be telling you. It’s a strong, memorable name.

    While you’re at it, create a logo! (Psst: I noticed that your name has a ‘star’ in it.)

    :)

  8. says

    Cheers jaced!

    You know I was thinking about a logo. I tried to come up with a few ideas for one…

    Actually my blog turned two in December, I was considering having a belated birthday design me a logo competition. It could be fun, or it could just be tacky – I haven’t decided yet. :P

    Anywho, thanks heaps for coming by! I think I will go with kristarella, or kristarella.com for the name.