Sunday, 26 February 2017

Is the blogging industry sustainable?

You know that feeling when you've got a million things to do but you're itching to open your laptop and rustle up a blog post? Yep, that's me right now. I'm drowning in packing hell as I try to pack for the next few days away for work - my first shoot with the BBC which is so exciting! - but I had a little light bulb moment, and now I just want to write all about it. 
Let me firstly say that this post is just a complete and utter ramble, and I apologise to anyone who was hoping for a little structure in their blog reading today - this post just ain't it. I'm literally typing whatever comes into my head and it feels fantastic. It's quite liberating really, the fact that I have built this little platform where I can openly share whatever comes into my brain, but after reading several Twitter debates, lots of bloggers' Facebook statuses, and micro-blogs on Instagram about this topic, it got me thinking...

Is blogging a sustainable industry? Or is it coming to its end?

I started blogging almost four years ago, and back then it was a relatively new phenomenon. Yes, blogs, personal websites and similar micro-blogging platforms had been around for years, and some may say I was late to the party, but the blogging industry as it stands today was just emerging. A little seed planted amongst the soil of the web that was just starting to grow, and I was a part of it. 

When I first created my blog back in 2013, I'll be honest when I say I knew nothing of the community. I stumbled across the blogosphere whilst looking for a beauty product review, thought it seemed like a really fun way to combat my university homesickness and to get my creative juices flowing, and within ten minutes had set up my own. My friends didn't really understand when I explained that I had this new digital hobby, and were even more flabbergasted by the fact that I got invited to promotional events and had a new bunch of online buddies to talk to. Nevertheless, I absolutely loved blogging and soon become completely immersed in the industry and all it had to offer. 

Fast forward four years and blogging, and indeed bloggers, are everywhere. My friends who have absolutely no interest in the industry or the media follow a load of these up-and-coming influencers on Instagram. High street stores are dominated by blown-up photographs of bloggers modelling and promoting the brands' offerings. Bloggers are fronting television programmes, charity campaigns, gracing the front covers of magazines, and the front rows of fashion weeks. Heck, there's even a blogging story line currently causing more havoc for the Platt family on Coronation Street. 

But amongst all of this incredible success, I can't help but feel a little bleugh about the whole situation. While I am absolutely in awe, and so incredibly proud, of how many of the bloggers I started following four years ago have blossomed into these fantastically inspirational girl bosses; I can't help but feel like slowly, but surely, the industry is starting to dwindle. 

Am I being completely pessimistic if I say that "making it" in the industry is becoming increasingly difficult? 

I don't know. I just feel like the industry is so over-saturated at present that it's becoming more and more difficult to find your "niche". There are basically a handful of bloggers who are presented with these amazing opportunities, and I can't help but feel that so many seriously talented people are overlooked as it's all a numbers game. What's more, people are moving away from traditional blogging platforms in favour of micro-blogging sites like Instagram, and more visual entities like YouTube and Snapchat. How many of the "big" bloggers that you follow still spend time writing and photographing? It seems that the industry is evolving again, and it's quite the challenge to keep up. 

I don't want this post to sound like a complete moan because it's not; I absolutely LOVE blogging. It's something that's always on my mind, and I'd definitely say that I still have phases where I become completely obsessed with it. I love having a platform where I can write and ramble, and a place to look back on in the future. I love that it's taught me so much about the media, the world and myself too. And I absolutely love that I've met so many amazing, wonderful and interesting people through it - many who I now consider lovely friends. I certainly won't be hanging up my blogging shoes (FYI, they're super fierce and sparkly) any time soon, but I can't help but wonder how the industry will evolve over the next four years. Or whether there'll still be one then?

It would be so great to hear your thoughts about the changes in the industry, whether you agree or disagree entirely. It may just be the bloggers that I personally follow and interact with, but I can't help but feel that we're all feeling a little weird about the industry at the moment. What do you think?

Lots of love. xoxo

27 comments:

  1. I know exactly how you feel. I think its harder than ever to make your mark but their are still chances and we just need to push creativity.

    xoxo
    J
    from
    The Crown Wings

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  2. The industry is definitely moving towards visual and away from writing which I think is a shame :(

    Emily | emsalice.com

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    1. I agree - I love the writing side of things! xx

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  3. I know what you mean, for sure. I love blogging and plan to continuing doing it...but I find these days, people are less interested in reading, and would rather just double tap on Instagram! It can be disheartening for sure. But the passion for what you do has to carry you through the rough patches!
    the-creationofbeauty.blogspot.com

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    1. Yes I think so too - there is a lot less reading and a lot more emphasis on social. Definitely agree that passion is everything! xx

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  4. I completely agree hun. It's so over saturated. I think blogging will die out eventually and something new will come along. Not sure what but there's always something new that comes along. Micro blogging seems to be the in thing these days. I remember a time when blogging was just about recording our thoughts, our daily habits, trials and tribulations, sharing our beauty or fashion loves. Posts would be fresh, organic and dare I say flawed? Even Zoe Sugg. You'd find grainy photos, spelling mistakes and very 'real' posts. And I loved it. Because it was real! An actual online type journal with a real insight into each other's lives. These days, I think because of how blogging has gone, there's been a shift. Everyone is so focused on creating 'worthy' content and taking perfect photos. I've even taken to using stock images just so I feel like my blog at least looks a little professional. It makes me wonder how many reviews are honest. Or are they more about pleasing the brand that's paying them? It also makes me sad that blogging has become this for so many, myself included. And why? Because we're trying to make it? Get noticed? I'm beginning to think to hell with it. I might take my blog back to what I always wanted it to be. Just an online journal where I waffle and ramble whether anyone reads it or not. After all, they're the kind of blogs I used to follow and read religiously. And as for this post Jessie, I bloody love it!! Because it's everything I want in a post. It's fresh, spontaneous and it gives me even more of an insight into your world! These are my favourites of all the ones you write! 🙌🏻❤ xxxx

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    1. Thank you so much for leaving such a lovely comment, it really made my day! :) I'm enjoying mixing up my blog and taking it back to its roots. It's so much fun! xxxx

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  5. I really like this statement and I think you are totally right! There are so many bloggers and I think the bad thing is that everyone can call himself a blogger. There are no guidelines which is good on one side but also very dangerous on the other side. I am curious how everything turns out and how the business keeps evolving. I think you are doing a great job here - you should really keep it up. There are not that much of true and good bloggers :)
    xx, Carmen - http://www.carmitive.com

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    1. Thank you so much lovely lady :) That's such a kind comment! xx

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  6. You have literally nailed. The more "traditional" forms of a blogging site are not getting overlooked. I have to admit, the ease of Instagram as a micro-blogging platform is great for when you are on the go. But I'll always have a place for my little blog I think. Great post!
    Bee | QueenBeady.com

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    1. I agree - I love Instagram but I do miss the more traditional forms of blogging. xx

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  7. This is such an interesting read as I've often thought about this myself, I totally agree with you, it's definitely become oversaturated since I began blogging in 2012/2013 - it's crazy! PS. I love your writing style! :)

    Hannah xx | trustinvogue.com

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    1. Thank you so much lovely! :) Means so much xx

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  8. Congratulations on your BBC photo shoot experience! This was such an honest and thought provoking post. So true. I hope all of us who enjoy keeping our online diaries alive will always have a place to write and document our world and share it, even if times continue to change so rapidly as they do!! Scary stuff! Such a very good read this post. Best wishes. Xx

    Keep Calm and start writing -
    www.23millymay25.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thank you :) It is really odd how everything is changing but I would miss blogging so much if I ever gave it up! xx

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  9. I set up my first blog around the same time as you and I think you're right - this industry is evolving. Many love watching videos and looking at pretty pictures rather than reading. I think maybe some find reading a lot of effort. Plus with a video you can see so much more. I think YouTube is where it's at right now. However, I'm not convinced that blogging is on its way out, even if the market is saturated. X

    ♥ Carly Susanne - A Beauty & Lifestyle Blog

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    1. Yes I agree - it seems that reading is a lot of effort for many. I prefer blogging to YouTube if I'm honest, but hopefully it will continue for some time! xx

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  10. You've hit the nail on the head and its so true! xx

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  11. Very good post and like many have said before me, you speak so much truth. Personally I'd like to believe that bloggers are still out there, making a difference. I just think we need to even more outstanding to fight against the growth of social media. Thank you for writing this and sharing it with us :)

    Marc | www.ohbuggerall.com

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  12. Rambly blog posts are up there with some of my absolute favourite posts! This was such a thought-provoking read and I don't think you were being negative or moaning at all. It's a topic that I've seen a lot of discussion about recently. I think blogging has definitely blown-up A LOT in the past year and with that there comes so many changes to get used to. As you said, the blogosphere is becoming more and more saturated, which I personally think is pressuring some people to 'polish' their content in a hope to get recognised.
    Personally, I'm going to keep blogging out of pure love to ramble and create things. And if that brings along the odd opportunity here and there then yay, it's an added extra perk for a hobby that I adore!
    xx
    Tasmin | www.grandiosedays.com

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    1. That's exactly how I'm seeing it! I would love to make some money out of my blog - seeing it as a freelance perk - but I don't want to feel too pressured whilst doing it. I just want blogging to be a really fun way to express creativity! xx

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  13. Great post! You've summed it up perfectly, I know so many oldies are feeling the same right now, so we aren't alone! I really am interested to see how much more it changes in the next few years. All we can do is keep on blogging :) xxx

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  14. Im a little new to the blogging world nearly been blogging a year and it's hard trying to make your mark and for to hear you as social media is changing all the time I do hope that in the next four years and more that the blogging community grows , I've never worked with a brand before but what I do see is that it's all about numbers instead your writing and creativity . Thank you for writing such an enjoyable blog post

    Www.kloeslilcorner.werbly.com

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