How "authentic" should you be on a blog? Is there a limit to building yourself as a brand?
(Image source succo at Pixabay)
IRL, I swear. A LOT. I know there's times when it's unacceptable, but honestly even in a lot of those situations I do it anyway (there's speculation about Asperger's here...). Whether or not I swear in front of children depends more on how well I know the parents (and if they're complete strangers I'm passing in a park, I just don't care). However, on my blogs I keep it moderately PG. Hmm...
It doesn't seem very genuine that I don't swear much in my posts, yet I've always thought swearing in a "professional" setting was a no-no. So many reputable sources suggest crossing that line to offend who it will (Russell Brunson, for one), that I can't help but wonder if I have it all wrong.
Granted, if cursing were uncharacteristic of me, then there wouldn't be any question about using it on my blogs. Forcing it online is just like it was when I was 12 - silly looking, and a little pathetic. But there's a maximum tolerance level even for me. If every sentence chokes out the f-bomb, it doesn't matter if the writing sounds natural; there's a better way to phrase things than excessively swearing like that.
I didn't see any articles from Entrepreneur or Forbes, so I'm guessing there's a hint of truth to even broaching the subject as being unprofessional. I wouldn't go as far as this guy, though, who sounds a lot like one of my uptight family members when we were kids. Personally, I believe that all words have a purpose, and can be used reasonably to trigger an intended effect. As long as the user understands the potential effect, that is.
Then there's this other guy that remains on the fence, but cites some interesting drawbacks to swearing. Well, I don't have an income from my blogging yet (and I may never), so that doesn't really apply to me. This gal makes some pretty good points about voice, but ultimately says to play it safe.
Then I find on Scripted, there's actual science suggesting swearing could be a benefit! Though it still really comes down to your audience.
Neil Patel wrote on Quicksprout how it could really go either way. Mostly the theme of your brand itself should answer whether cursing is acceptable or not, like some edgier startups these days. BUT, he found it doesn't really work for him.
A Problogger article mentions some alternatives to swearing - though it didn't take an anti-swearing stance, it's important to know what tools to use so you can pick the best one.
For this blog, I think I'll stick to censorship. At least for the time being. I reserve my right to change at any time, but until I know for sure what my 'brand' even is, it's probably best to keep it low key. Thoughts? Comments? You know the drill!
As I begin this anew, I know only one thing: that I know nothing. Learn with me, and together we will figure this out.
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