FAQ: Round 10

Jenny asked: “Lyndsay, I have a blog for my etsy business but struggle with posting more personal content the way you do. I’d really like to move my blog more into the lifestyle category but don’t know how much personal stuff is TOO much. Also, do you consider safety issues that might come along with posting details about your family? Do I sound like an old lady who worries too much???”

Jenny, These are such good questions, and I’ve had to think about the safety thing a lot more over the last year. My very first blog (back in 2006) was a journal where I could write about my day-to-day life and post pictures of me and my friends, etc. Then when I started Pink Coffee a year later I just started posting photo shoots and photography content on the same blog. It was a natural progression, because my business was such a big part of my life. I definitely think of this blog as a lifestyle blog that includes my business, rather than the other way around. To transition your blog from strictly business to a little more personal you might want to start by posting one personal post a week or even every other week. That way your current readers won’t feel like you’ve totally changed your content on them. And maybe mention here and there that you’re looking forward to sharing more about your life. Personally, I really enjoy when a blogger let’s me in on their real world. It makes me feel a connection to them, and I bet your readers will too. Just know that the level of personal content you choose to share is totally up to you. It’s all about what you’re comfortable with.

The safety issue is something I’ve really been more aware of over the last year. Back when 12 people read my blog I felt completely comfortable sharing just about anything, but now that I have a great readership (hey blog friends!) I’m much more careful. I think becoming a mom has a lot to do with it too. Once upon a time my Portrait Guide (the pdf I send to all prospective clients) had my address on it. Yeah. So basically, people emailed me saying they were interested in more info about pictures, and I sent them a document with my home address. Smart. The Portrait Guide included a contract that clients have to sign in order to book a session. The address was on it, so people would know where to mail their contract and deposit. Now the Portrait Guide is separate from the contract. I don’t mind my clients having my address, but not potential clients! It was just a dumb, naive move on my part. People who live in our area have a pretty good idea of the part of town we live in just based on the places we frequently visit. And I’m okay with that, but it doesn’t seem smart to have my actual address out there.

I don’t write much about our extended family anymore either. I realized that this blog is my space to share my story, not theirs. And I don’t want them to ever feel uncomfortable about being on the web for all the world to see. Anderson and I are totally comfortable with it, but that doesn’t mean everyone else is.

Also, I try to be careful with specific schedule details. Have you ever seen a “day in the life” blog post? Those freak me out. “At 10:00 am I go to spin class, then at 12:00 pm I pick little Ron Jon up from preschool at ______ ______ School.”  Too much info. There are crazy people out there. This is where I think the whole being a mom thing kicks in, because I never really thought about this until Kingston was born. I’m also cautious about real time check-ins. Usually if I post an Instagram picture that says we’re at Mochi (one of those frequent hang-outs I mentioned) we’ve really just left Mochi. I think it’s just a little creepy to tell everyone where I am.

The last thing I’m careful about is sharing personal family stuff that needs to stay between us. Like if we’re dealing with something really difficult as a family or even just something fun we did that I don’t feel like sharing with the world. Sometimes it’s nice to keep things between us, you know?

At the end of the day you really have to decide what feels right for you and/or your family. As long as you stay true to who you are your readers will appreciate whatever you put out there, even if it’s just a little personal update here and there. But if it feels like you’re trying to be someone you’re not, it turns people off.

And I HAD to share a few more pics from our family shoot. Want to see about 500 more? Click here!