If you’re open to it, there are lessons to be learned where you least expect them. I experienced this myself last night when I was up late working on a blog post covering a set of business blogging tips with Kathy Griffin on the TV in the background. This unexpected combination led to a light bulb going off above my head. The two meshed; it just worked.
In case you don’t know her, Kathy Griffin of My Life on the D-List is a funny and typically controversial stand-up comedian and actress. She is best known for her tongue-in-cheek jokes about celebrities, but unbeknownst to her, she would make a great business blogger if she applied the same formula that has made her a popular stand-up comedian to a business blog. Let me explain.
She Goes for the Laugh
Kathy is a comedian; her job is to make people laugh. But humor shouldn’t be left strictly to the professionals, and believe it or not, there is a place for it on your business blog.
Business blogs are usually serious, straightforward and – dare I say – boring. But sharing business-related information doesn’t have to be so dull.
While I wouldn’t recommend telling any off-color jokes or poking fun at big names in your industry, taking a more light-hearted approach on your blog can make it a lot more interesting. Some ideas: write a parody post describing similarities between two polar opposites (like this one), tell a funny anecdote about a relevant personal experience, or use humorous photos to accompany your all-business posts.
She Says It Out Loud
Kathy Griffin isn’t shy about her point of view. It’s no secret that she has issues with certain people and organizations, and that she is an outspoken supporter for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights. By being vocal about her perspective on various issues, she has been banned from countless venues and TV shows, and rebuked by numerous media outlets. Yet, her point of view is part of her persona. She is known for telling it like it is (at least how it is to her).
This idea of taking a stand, making it public and staying behind it can be a powerful way to invigorate a business blog. There are hot topics in every industry (crowdsourcing and spec work in the design industry, for example), and most likely, you have a point of view on these issues.
Instead of sitting on the fence when it comes to a controversial issue, take a stand and let it be known. Of course not everyone will agree with you, but one goal of your business blog should be to encourage discussion. Expressing your point of view is a great way to get people inspired to comment and get the conversation going.
She Relates to Her Audience
Kathy shares insider secrets about celebrities and her experiences in Hollywood, and the behind-the-scenes storytelling makes her seem down-to-earth and approachable. If you’re in the audience at an appearance or watching her show, you can’t help but feel like an insider. She positions herself as a friend of the masses and plays up the “us against them” feeling.
On your blog, it’s great to impart your wisdom and experience, but make it applicable to your readers. Give them what they want, and show that you relate to who they are while you do it.
By all means, provide general tips, but sometimes giving actionable examples of how those tips can be applied goes a lot further. Take time to find out what your audience wants to read by listening to their comments, following your site statistics to see what people are reading, and simply by asking. Then apply this information to your blog for enhanced engagement and interaction.
She Listens to Her Mom
Kathy has a very close relationship with her mother and refers to it often in her routine and on her show. Her mom is almost like her conscience, questioning some of the most controversial things she says, reminding her of the lessons she was taught growing up, and keeping her accountable.
While you probably won’t be calling up your parents for advice every time you post to your blog, you can make your blog better by keeping in mind some of the most basic lessons you learned in childhood. A few that come to mind: sharing is good; watch your language; if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything.
Whether or not you are a Kathy Griffin fan, the point here is that you can learn something from every single interaction in your life, if you’re open to it. What seemingly unrelated experiences have helped you do something better in your life or for your business lately?
Image credit: Wikimedia Commons