Toni M. says, “I am now realizing that I need to broaden my target audience … does that mean I should blog about topics outside of my comfort zone in order to get those clicks from emails?”

NO! Like a serious, capital N-O. Write what you know. Always and forever. After four years here at Benchmark, I feel like I can say I know email, social media and pretty much all other things online marketing. Those posts just come naturally to me at this point. Plus, I’ve put in the groundwork to be established as a resource on the subject. The trick is to find the content in your comfort zone that is also interesting to your readers or subscribers.

No matter how comfortable you are on a subject, at a certain point you run into some problems. You feel like you’ve said it all before or someone else has. You need to find out what sets you apart. I said that I’m comfortable on all things online marketing, but I’m even more versed in the areas of TV, film and music. However, you can’t just write about pop culture on a business and marketing blog. What you can do, though, is put the marketing twist on your pop culture subjects. I’ve turned the Jersey Shore spending a season in Italy into a lesson on taking your product into a foreign market and the email marketing lessons that can be gleamed from Orange is the New Black. If you have fun with your subject, you readers will enjoy it too.

If you don’t possess the underlying need to justify mass TV and movie binges (like I clearly do), then there’s other ways you can make content interesting. Find your own voice. Infuse your personality into your blogging. That is something your readers will come to know and look forward to.

So, now that I’ve exhausted a few paragraphs telling you why you must write what you know … let me tell you why you don’t always have to. To be honest, I didn’t know much at all about email marketing when I first started. I read up and learned on the fly. I now wish I would have kept a live blog of the experience. Something that would show your readers why you’ve come to be known as a resource and also to let them know that it is possible to learn it. You just did in front of their eyes!

Another way to get out of your comfort zone is to have someone do it for you. Invite guest bloggers or writers to come contribute some content in exchange for links, or you doing a post for their site or email campaigns. Search Twitter for experts on the subject you’re looking for and reach out to them.

So … the long answer is no, but also sometimes yes. Interesting content always trumps all. Just make sure it makes sense and attracts the audience you’re looking for. When you broaden what your comfort zone can be, your audience will grow too.