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