Does your blog have readers from all over the world? If so then your writing and blog style need to have global appeal.
For most bloggers having a global audience is a great problem to have and one which can be easily solved with a little forethough, consideration and planning.
I was inspired to write about how to create a blog with global appeal by this email I got from a reader:
“I think it would be really good to write a post about how to appeal to a global audience as a travel writer. One of the difficulties we have on the HostelBookers Blog is deciding which posts are most relevant or interesting for our readers. We have readers from all over Europe as well as North and South America and the pacific ocean – how do you appeal to all these people?!”
Sounds like you? Here are my thoughts on how to make your blog have as much global appeak as the Dalai Lama.
How to Write a Blog With Global Appeal
1. Decide where your main readership is and use language they understand
You can appeal to people all over the world but your blog writing will work better if you have a main audience in mind. I write both my blogs (I have a travel blog too) primarily for my ideal readers in the USA and Canada so I use US spelling and aim to be consistent in that.
But I also have many readers in Australia where I live, and in Britain where I’m from. I often use Australian or British slang on my travel blog to play up on that because it makes Aussies and Brits comfy and gives North Americans reading my travel blog a virtual travel experience and taste of my personality. It also makes me unique because I’m probably the only “Australian” travel blogger with British and New Zealand passports.
Here on my business blog I avoid slang and use language that is easily understood all over the world.
Choose American English or British English spelling to suit your target readers. Be consistent in that and avoid slang unless you have a good reason for doing so.
2. Study your blog readers
Check Google Analytics and your email open rates to see which of your blog posts are most popular then run more on similar or related topics.
You can find more tips for getting blog post ideas here but if your readers like something give them more of it. You’ll probably notice that the most popular posts are the ones that everyone can relate to and for more detailed information about your readers you could design a blog survery.
3. Choose universal writing themes
Universal themes have global appeal because they break down borders and cultural barriers. For example, we were all children once so blog posts about childhood, school, learning to ride a bike, your first kiss or your first pet will have wide appeal because nearly everyone can relate to them.
Other universal themes include: family, food, emotional times such as happy, sad or embarassing moments, life challenges, fears and dreams for the future.
4. Use humor
Everyone likes to have a laugh but if even if you only raise a smile readers all over the world will enjoy that.
5. Be personal
Sharing personal writing will differentiate you from boring sites in your niche. For example, some travel blogs just duplicate press releases or share similar tips on what to do and where to go that quickly dates.
Sharing personal stories will build trust because it humanizes you so you’re no longer the brand (eg. Hostel Bookers) but a real and interesting person – Cheryl from London (who happens to run Hostel Bookers.) Download my free ebooklet for more personal writing tips.
6. Use social proof
Having blog post comments, testimonials and media mentions on your blog show everyone at a glance, even non-native language speakers, that you have wide appeal. Having no comments on your blog tells people no one reads your blog so make sure every post has at least one comment.
All over the world a smiling face tells people you are friendly and looking forward to getting to know them. So choose a smiley photo for your blog and gravatar.
8. Be clear
Make sure everyone knows exactly what you’re talking about. For example, if you indicate currency when you list a price then use the most common currency for your main audience such as US$ and state that so there can be no confusion.
9. Translate metric to non-metric
As with spelling choose one way for writing measurements and stick to it. Or use what you’re most familar with but always provide a translation in brackets for your readers. Sometimes it doesn’t matter if you switch between metric and non-metric as long as you show readers the equivalent. For example I’m 5 foot 9″ (172cm) and weigh 60 kilos (132 lbs) – but I only weight myself first thing in the morning on an empty stomach! There are many conversion calculators online to do the maths for you.
10. Don’t assume
Never assume that if you mention London your readers will automatically think about the capital of England when they may be thinking about another London in Canada or South Africa. Unless you’re mentioning obvious markers, for example you mention Buckingham Palace or Trafalgar Square add the country (UK) in brackets to make it clear.
11. Be truthful and human
The Dalai Lama has massive global appeal because he is honest, humble and human. Be truthful with your readers, show respect for them by joining their conversations both on and off your blog and, when you do make a mistake own up to it.
After all, just like your readers, you’re only human so they will be able to relate to that.
Bear your global audience in mind when you write your blog and tailor your posts so they have wide and global appeal. Just as chocolate, coffee and chatting with friends are popular globally so your blog writing can have fans all over the world.
Does your blog have global appeal or are you aiming at local readers?