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Do You Want to Be Remarkable?

Can you make a list of ten things that are remarkable?

Go ahead, try.

Without thinking too much, here is my list:

  • Johnny Depp
  • Amazon.com
  • Seth Godin
  • Chanel
  • Harry Potter
  • Steve Jobs
  • Mohammad Ali
  • Copyblogger
  • Seinfeld
  • Memoirs of a Geisha
  • Grey’s anatomy
  • Google
  • Bridget Jones Diary
  • Apartment Therapy
  • Michael Jackson

Ok, so that’s more than 10, and a bit mainstream, but bear with me here, will you?

The point is, we all know what remarkable looks like.

We may be hard-pressed to define it, but we all know it when we see it.

And we certainly remember it. That’s why this list took under a minute to compile.

So if we know it when we see it and it is unforgettable, by this logic, it pays to become remarkable. It looks like a surefire way to stand out from the crowd.

Think about it. There are hundreds of actors but only one Johny Depp. There are thousands of chick lit titles, but only one Bridget Jones Diary.

Countless comedy shows, but comedy about nothing? Seinfeld. Nothing can top that in my book.

Ahh — looks like we are getting somewhere.

Not afraid of being different. Not afraid to stand out. A pioneer of sorts. (That’s why Problogger is what it is, isn’t it?)

I define ‘remarkable’ as something that is:

  • Original / unique. It is so different that it leaves you marveling
  • Memorable so it refuses to get out of your mind
  • Of exceptional quality that commands respect
  • Passion and demonstration of clear love
  • Not for everyone. They are meant for highly specialised audiences. (Believe me there are plenty of people who can’t stand Steve Jobs or think Seinfeld is highly overrated.)

Never mind that Dictionary.com defines it as something meaning ‘notably or conspicuously unusual, extraordinary, worthy of notice or attention’. I’d maintain that my definition is much cooler. 🙂

Gimmicky certainly isn’t one of these things and that’s why fads die away so quickly. They might be original for the sake of it alone, but they lack in other criteria. They are short lived precisely because they have nothing going on for them – they are soon forgotten.

How do you incorporate all of this into your blog?

How do you make sure your writing doesn’t fall into ‘gimmicky’?

#1 Have a Cause

Like I said in my previous stand for something post, have a cause. Attach core values to your brand. This will ensure stick-ability in your readers’ minds.

This tells them there is reason you are out there; to help them out with something specific.  And why it is so important to you. Your readers will commit to you and your brand.

(For those of you who are new here at Writing Happiness, I believe that effective writing = effective communication, keep it simple and always be true to yourself. This is the way to go when you are writing for results.)

#2 Write Content with Your Uniqueness

If your content looks and feels like any other piece on the web, what reason is there for the reader to come back for more? Develop your own voice and write with confidence. Come up with your own sayings, people will surely notice.

Danny Brown is a fantastic example of this. You have to read his blog to find how original and authentic he is. Marcus Sheridan is another one. He is not afraid to tell the truth, even at the risk of irking A-list bloggers.

More examples? Check out Nick Usborne, the fabulous web copywriter. I find him truly remarkable in the way he appoaches his topics and again he is someone who tells it like it is.

Is this the reason they are growing so quickly? Couple that with producing excellent content and there is no doubt in my mind, whatsoever.

#3 Write with Passion

Why would anyone care if you don’t? Make them see things the way you do and you have done something remarkable indeed.

Write compelling stories. Stories that engage spread like fire.

Be a leader instead of a follower. Don’t be scared to say what you think. This way you will build up your own community of like minded people who trust you.

#4 Be Something to Somebody

A product is not for everyone, it’s for someone.

Don’t write for everybody, you won’t please anyone. Identify what your readers are like and write for them. Offer them something so valuable that they are afraid to let go.

Don’t talk at them, they are intelligent, some even more than you. Be an equal so that they can relate to you, even inspire to be you.

#5 Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously

Work hord and don’t forget to have fun. If you don’t, it will show and people will notice.

It’s not a matter of life and death, it is about improving somebody’s life, says Seth Godin in The Big Moo. Relax and have fun. Don’t be boring.

And the last tip, don’t try too hard to be remarkable. If you do what you do for all the right reasons, you will achieve this naturally.

Question: What is one thing you need to do in your writing to become remarkable? Share in the comments below.

Have you taken my 3-minute Client Attraction Quiz? Check it out now, it’s awesome! :)

23 Comments

  1. Mehmudah Says :
    Posted on February 6, 2012 at 5:45 am

    Marya Awesomeness this post!

    Agree with it all the way!

    I finally managed to go through your ebook. very well put together!

    Keep up the great work!!
    -M

    • marya
      Posted on February 6, 2012 at 5:56 am

      Thanks very much Mehmudah. Glad you liked it.

      Also thanks for your kind words about my ebook. I was starting to panic .. 😉

      • Mehmudah Says :
        Posted on February 17, 2012 at 11:53 am

        Hey where are you? It’s been a while since you posted!

        • marya
          Posted on February 22, 2012 at 2:58 am

          Here I am – with yet another long -ish post. heheh. Hope you enjoy it.

  2. Sandra Bell Kirchman Says :
    Posted on February 6, 2012 at 5:57 am

    Wise post, Marya. I see you have been working hard and making your mark. Good for you and congratulations for the awards you have been reaping. I am so glad to see it.

    One thing I could do to make my blog more remarkable is to organize my time better so that I can write on my blog more frequently. That won’t make me remarkable, I guess, but it will certainly save me from being more unremarkable than I otherwise would be. Hopefully my writing is interesting enough and sincere enough to do the rest.

    • marya
      Posted on February 6, 2012 at 6:02 am

      Hi Sandra, long time no see. I was just thinking about you the other day – honest! 🙂

      Thanks for your kind words. I agree posting regularly is the right thing to do. Too bad, I can’t seem to do this right. But I think our readers are more forgiving than we think. (I just fixed some typos in the post, usually one or two go through no matter what I do, but no negative reactions. I guess my readers are too kind.)

      It was lovely hearing from you. How is your ebook doing?

      • Sandra Bell Kirchman Says :
        Posted on February 6, 2012 at 6:10 am

        Do you mean Witchcanery on Kindle? It is doing well, now that I can let people know about it. For a few months, no one knew about it because it wasn’t exactly under my name (just a mix-up, but it was straightened out).

        Right now, I am ghostwriting a book for a client about his (very interesting) life. Very enjoyable job – first time ghostwriting for me. He really likes my style and I am having a blast writing it.

        I also still have the Kindle book of flash stories of mine on tap. Just need time to get at it. I have finally recognized that I am not so busy as I am having trouble organizing my time. One of these days I’ll get the hang of it.

        Nice chatting with you. I’ve been missing you and decided just to make time to read your post 🙂 Take care.

  3. Nick Usborne Says :
    Posted on February 6, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    Thanks for the mention! Humbled and appreciative. ; )

    • marya
      Posted on February 9, 2012 at 12:38 am

      Nick, it is my absolute pleasure. Thanks for sharing it too. 🙂

      Marya

  4. Shlomo Says :
    Posted on February 6, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    Marya –
    I read the list two times, three times, still didn’t see my name.

    Sigh.

    But the truth is, even though what I’m doing (so far as I can tell) is unique, it is in a small niche. So, I might not make your list (and that’s OK, since you’re not part of my target readership). I do hope I’ll eventually be on the remarkable list for my target readership.

    Shlomo

    • marya
      Posted on February 9, 2012 at 12:42 am

      Shlomo, you made me smile!

      My list consisted of all the ‘big players’ because I wanted to make a point. I could have easily gone through my specific web writing and copywriting niches too but nobody would have a clue. I bet you rank well in your niche. Best of luck!

  5. Marcus Sheridan-The Sales Lion Says :
    Posted on February 6, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Hey Marya! LOVE the theme and incredibly grateful for your kind words.

    Thank you!

    Marcus

    • marya
      Posted on February 9, 2012 at 12:44 am

      Thanks Marcus. You keep inspiring me with your work. Great job (and not very common) that you are doing. Cheers

  6. Susan Forsythe Says :
    Posted on February 6, 2012 at 4:03 pm

    This post could not be more timely. I’ve been struggling to find my voice in the blogging world since I launched my blog several months ago. Funny thing is, when I blogged on Weight Watchers, I had a lot of followers. Since I started blogging for my business, I’ve had practically no followers. Your article has made me realize what I did right and what I need to fix. THANK YOU!

    • marya
      Posted on February 9, 2012 at 12:46 am

      Thanks Susan for sharing your thoughts. Often I read something that proves to be an a-ha moment for me. My goal is try and do the same for others. Glad to have helped. Cheers 🙂

  7. Andrea Hypno @Ipnostudio Says :
    Posted on February 9, 2012 at 11:05 am

    Beautiful post Marya, your blog is really on of the places really useful to get hints and advices which really work. I dig too the style of Danny and Marcus btw and all your points are wise; I guess n° 5 would apply to a lot of bloggers, and also in the real world.

    Very good post. 🙂

    • marya
      Posted on February 11, 2012 at 2:43 am

      Thank you Andrea. I really appreciate hearing your thoughts and your kind words. Cheers

  8. Zoe
    Posted on February 14, 2012 at 8:50 am

    I love this! Especially writing from your heart. 🙂

  9. Becca Says :
    Posted on April 12, 2012 at 1:16 pm

    You are remarkable Marya! The ideas you’ve shared here are fantastic and no doubt so great and it may really improve the variety of individuals visiting your website.
    thanks for the share.

  10. Reese Says :
    Posted on April 23, 2012 at 11:15 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more. Specially the last one. At times people who take themselves too seriously just sound pompous and/or pretentious. Just find your own voice as a writer, hone your skill, have fun and stay true by writing about topics that you are really interested in and/or knowledgeable about.

    • marya
      Posted on April 27, 2012 at 5:33 am

      I hear you Reese. The minute you start taking yourself too seriously, you are at risk of losing the plot. Thanks for dropping by!

  11. Hamid
    Posted on June 18, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    Hi Marya,

    Indeed, these combinations of words represents something that can be said as “remarkable”- but..

    That “but” .. That but has so much behind it – questions, confusions, some scatered visions, some undiscovered areas of thoughts (personaly).

    What I usualy face whenever I try to put something into words is: “the incompleteness” – I do percieve things in my own way, random thoughts about anything and everything. “BUT” whenever I decide or tries to find a way to express those random thoughts about the things which I see in a different way, I find my self empty or incomplete

    Pls, give me something on it

  12. Nancy Zrymiak Says :
    Posted on September 5, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    #1 is the one I need to work on, still trying to find my voice. Great list though, I will definitely keep it in mind!