Most of the time, people concentrate on just a few things when considering a blog transformation. Usually, the changes are focussed on the name and/or the blog's theme or look.
At least, that's what I mostly did through ShaiCoggins.com's several transformations before. No matter how much I wanted to do more, I end up mostly just changing the name/title, the theme and categories. Everything else just fell into the 'too hard basket'.
When I first started the process of transforming ShaiCoggins.com this year, however, I wanted it to be more than just a basic change. I didn't want it to be just a name change or a blog design refresh. I knew that if I was going to continue with this blog, I wanted it to reflect my changing priorities, my various personal interests, and how my Word of The Year ("Value") reflects these priorities and interests properly.
So, these are questions I have been going through as this blog undergoes transformation -
1. What is this blog really all about? I've always just blogged any way I wished to blog. I covered various interests from food and fashion to art, books, and digital media. I'm okay with all of it during the time I was doing it all, but as the years have gone by, I became less interested in doing it all. Well, okay, that's not quite right. I'm still interested in most of them, but I'm just not keen to write about and/or share photos of these things in the same way.
I'm still trying to figure out this big question, and I've often felt stuck because of that. So, I've decided that the way to handle this is to ask it more along the lines of: What is this blog really about *right now*?
Right now, I want this blog to be a place where I am able to provide value to everyone who comes here. And, I believe I'm able to do that by being authentic and by sharing my knowledge, skills and processes as best as I can.
2. How do I want to share my message? Again, this is another ongoing question for me. This pertains to length and style, frequency, content focus, and other similar topics.
Right now, I seem to be most comfortable by sharing my thought processes and solutions as they come. I've been trying to make my blog posts shorter so that I can post more often. But, the posts I seem happiest to publish are the ones that are a bit longer (around 750 - 1500 words). And yes, often accompanied by a graphic/photo and/or a quote. All these may still change as I work out all these things, but for now, this is where I'm at.
3. Why do I want to keep on blogging here? Perhaps, this is one of the most important questions to answer. Finding out our 'whys' often enable us to come up with a clearer understanding of our purpose. With such clarity, we are able to develop a better strategy.
For me, I know I'd always want a place online where I can connect with friends, family, and other contacts worldwide. That was one of the reasons I wanted to be on the internet in the first place. But, with social media platforms enabling me to do that with a lot more ease, I knew I had to change the way I use this blog - or stop blogging here altogether.
So now, the main reason I wish to continue blogging here is to find ways to offer my services and skills. To answer questions. To provide solutions. To offer ideas and inspiration. To share things that I am excited about and find useful. And yes, to keep connecting with like-minded individuals who wish to develop personally, professionally, and creatively.
Although it's tough to answer these three questions definitively, I know I am able to move forward when I had at least some answers to them. With such answers, I am able to work on this checklist a little better:
- Get/Design a new logo/header that reflect current branding.
- Change blog design/theme to reflect the purpose of the blog.
- Work on content and editorial calendar.
- Develop resource library/offers.
- Create appropriate graphics/templates.
- Rework categories/tags and re-organise old content.
- Build/rebuild/strengthen this blog's community/tribe/squad. 🙂
Again, I anticipate that this list will evolve (and possibly grow!) over time. For now, I am working on each one of them bit by bit. In fact, if you're a subscriber to our once-dormant mailing list (and/or you're following me on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Flickr), you might know that there is now a new logo (which may or may not stay), a new blog design, and a new Library of resources.
The S Squad Exclusive Content Library is currently available to mailing list subscribers only. However, I also plan on adding some resources that would be available to the public. Currently, there are only a couple of resources in the private library, but I am working on growing that too. So, if you'd like to be notified when you resources are available, do subscribe to our free mailing list.