Why Anonymity and Blogging Don’t Mix
There are as many reasons for starting a blog as there are potential bloggers. Regardless of your goal for your blog (i.e. earning money, gaining recognition, or simply providing your audience with information about a particular topic), unless your blog happens to be a straight affiliate or click-through site, you’ll need a personality behind your blog: yours!
Anonymity can be deadly for a blog. Here are several reasons why:
Anonymity makes your blog less personal. A blog is, by definition, a personal online communication space. Blogs were designed for two-way interaction. Even business blogs feature the same personal, relational interaction that keeps any blogging community vital and growing. Before making the decision to blog anonymously, ask yourself how much you would enjoy reading a stream of anonymously written content on a blog day after day. After reading such content, would you feel more or less inclined to interact with that content via comments, link to it on your own blog, or share it on social media sites than if the entry had been signed? Most people prefer to have some idea of whose work they are reading and would generally be less likely to comment on, link to, or share anonymously written posts.
Anonymity robs you of your authority as a blogger. If you’d like your readers to consider you an authority in your field and want them to believe what you tell them, it’s essential that they know who you are and what qualifies you to write about your topic. Otherwise, you’re just another stranger attempting to convince them of something. Why should they believe you? Blogging anonymously also prevents you from claiming credit to other writing you may have done that could help build your authority in your field by corroborating your expertise in your blog’s topic. You may also forfeit endorsements from other respected bloggers who could otherwise help establish your authority in your niche.
Anonymity steals your blog’s credibility. Credibility is always based on who a person is (i.e. the person behind the blog). By letting your readers know your identity, you show them that you have nothing to hide. This helps you begin building bridges of trust between yourself and your readers. Trust is always based on relationship, and while building that trust may take time, it will never happen at all if your identity is hidden from the very people you expect to take your insights seriously.
Anonymity prevents you from claiming your rightful place in your niche. Anyone who has more than a passing interest in your niche knows who the key players are—and your name can’t be among them if it’s unknown. Blogging fame can bring a few pitfalls, though, so you may be perfectly satisfied somewhere between anonymity and fame—or you may at least want to prepare for the responsibilities that accompany fame before you pursue it.) Whether or not fame is your goal, your work is an important part of the body of knowledge that comprises your niche, so don’t disqualify that work from taking its rightful place there by seeming to be a “nobody.”
Anonymity interferes with the development of your unique blogging voice. When you blog anonymously, what reason do you have to be unique, clever, witty, intelligent, or well-informed? If no one knows who you are, where’s the challenge to express yourself in a vivid, compelling way that people will recognize as being uniquely, characteristically you? Your blogging voice can only evolve fully in an atmosphere where it can be recognized as yours.
Anonymity and blogging are like oil and water: They simply don’t mix. If you’d like to make your blog one of the go-to sources in your niche, start by making your identity known. Then, continue gradually building your authority, enlarging your influence, and perfecting your blogging voice until your blog’s credibility, as well as its community, grows.
Guest post contributed by Harry French, on behalf of www.name.com.