Are You Just Repeating Yourself?

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Have you ever felt like you were just saying the same thing over and over again?  I’ve definitely been accused (and rightly so) of not only beating a dead horse but propping it up just to ride it into the ground again.

As a blogger, I have been very conscious not to repeat my topics for fear of boring my readers.  I think I have done a pretty good job of this, but I’m starting to wonder if that is very wise.

I usually don’t pay attention to blog posts that list a bunch of links, but I’ve learned that some bloggers consistently provide links with great value.  Brandon Cox is such a blogger.  His latest list, The Hot List of Links for Bloggers, contained a post by Patsi Krakoff called 9 Ways to Get Your Blogging Mojo Back.  One of her tips really caught my eye.

Don’t worry that you’re repeating yourself, say the same things in a different way. Readers need to hear messages more than once and in more than one way. Get creative with what you’ve already got. Repurpose, revise, re-invent!

That got me re-thinking my aversion to repeating myself.

Repetition is Essential in Learning

There are very few of us who truly learn something from one lesson.  If we did then there certainly would be no need for twelve years of schooling, much less additional years of college or post-graduate work.

Most everything I learned of importance came through some method of repetition.  The only exception I can think of is that whole don’t stick your hand in fire lesson.  Once was enough … just wish I had applied that lesson to the electrical outlet too.

I’ve often told my employees that you truly don’t master your position in a company until you have been in it for at least a year.  It is that repetition of tasks that are usually learned quickly applied to numerous situations over a long period of time that enables true mastery.

Repetition Develops the Habits that Define Us

As a blogger, if I am going to create my niche in the blogosphere then I must learn to focus in on that niche.  It is inevitable that I repeat myself, but this only reinforces my niche message.

As an entrepreneur, I am trying to create a niche to attract a target customer.  How do I do this?  I advertise repeatedly my key messages in various different advertisements.

If my business is aligned properly with my messaging then this repetition will affect how I operate my business creating habits in harmony with it.

Repetition from a Spiritual Perspective

It’s interesting how words have such a dynamic impact on our lives, especially when they are repeated.  One can’t read the Bible without thinking that God could have used an editor to cut out all of the seemingly pointless repetition.  But is it really pointless?

David exhorts the virtues of meditating on the Word.  Moses expounds on the importance of teaching the Word day and night to future generations.  Paul teaches us that it is the repetition of studying the Word that renews our minds and transforms us.

It is through this repetition over various situations in our lives that make the old words come alive with new meaning.  As a Christian, my faith is renewed through the hearing and studying of the Word.

When I find God is repeating Himself my ears perk up a little because I know He is trying to convey something important.

Repetition from a Secular Perspective

I guess we could say the same thing for any good book.  When I read some of my favorite novels or non-fiction books I tend to find something new that I had not seen before, or sometimes things I have seen but take on a whole new meaning.

As entrepreneurs, we repeat the same messages because our customers find new reasons to continue buying from us in the familiar refrain that has become our reputation.

Rather than chasing the latest fad and trying to re-invent our business every few years, we keep the same message polished gleaming like a lighthouse in the storm of fly-by-night companies.  Otherwise, how can they tell us apart?

Go Ahead, Repeat Yourself

So go ahead and repeat yourself.  Become the type of company, blogger, or whatever that you advertise to be.

Repeat that vision to yourself and your customers as often as you can.  It will help you stay true to your course and give your customers a constant reminder of why they do business with you.

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Brad's Big Feet Marketing helps people on a limited budget enlarge their online footprint using blogging & social media. His other blog, Marketplace Christianity, examines faith's role in how we earn and spend money.

Brad has written 95 awesome articles for us at Bradley A Harmon

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Dana June 25, 2010 at 4:29 am

I think repetition is good for blog. In my opinion, we should repeat a certain topic while we found new additional information in it.
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Brad Harmon June 29, 2010 at 9:14 pm

Agreed. I think in my attempt to not become repetitive with my blog posts I have actually become too sporadic and stretching past my targeted niche. Finding new ways to bring relevance to the same topics, while challenging, I think will ultimately pay much greater dividends.

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Laurie Neumann June 25, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Interesting post, Brad. I know I have felt that way, especially when writing articles. I feel like "haven't I said this many times before?" Of course, I do vary how I say it and say some different things. But the message is the same.

You have given me a new look at the whole situation – thank you!

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Brad Harmon July 1, 2010 at 10:43 pm

No problem Laurie. I apologize for the delayed response, but Akismet flagged you as spam and I did not notice it. I wonder how many times Christ must have thought those same words during His ministry. He was great at coming up with new parables and stories to explain the same points over and over again.

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Kiesha June 30, 2010 at 8:07 am

I think this is very wise advice. Finding new ways to say old things is a challenge, but rather than trying to be totally original, I just try present things in a different way, or from a different angle that might cause a eureka moment for someone for the first time. That's certainly worth repeating yourself for.
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Brad Harmon July 1, 2010 at 2:37 pm

I can remember many topics that had been extensively covered in previous lectures and entire classes, but for some reason the full grasp of the matter was out of my reach. Later, someone would give an example using these same facts and the light bulb just clicked on. Great point.

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@LeverageTheWeb June 30, 2010 at 9:15 am

Brad,

I really liked this post, especially the part where you talked about approaching your niche from different perspectives. Doing so will broaden and enrich your blog and make it better.

I also like how you tie into education. Another point there – mixing in and using different media on your blog (audio, text and video) allows those who learn best in different ways to enjoy your message and ultimately broadens the appeal of your blog to a wider audience.

-Matt

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Brad Harmon July 1, 2010 at 2:42 pm

I must admit that I have been intrepid about launching into multiple media for my blog. I think that you're absolutely correct though. By utilizing these various media tools we can capture the attention of a broader audience and create new ways of looking at "old" content giving it new life.

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