Is Blogging Dead? No, not really!
Yesterday I tweeted the following, “Have @facebook pages had their day? Feels worn out to me now. I don’t have as much enthusiasm for my page any more.” I didn’t expect a response, because to be honest, many of my tweets are like farting into the wind, quickly gone and as quickly forgotten. However, friend and fellow artist Shayla Maddox responded, and we had, what was for Twitter anyway, a longer than usual conversation about social networking and blogging.
It was my assertion, that whilst I was as active as ever on my own personal profile, given that’s where my friends and family are all gathered together, I was losing enthusiasm for my Facebook page, despite having over 2,700 followers. In truth, I got more comments, likes and activity on there two years or so ago when I had about 100o followers. Now, in part I think this is down to the mercurial drive of Facebook to squeeze every last dollar out of it’s members, and making it harder and harder for pages to be a useful business tool, unless they pay up, and in fact…businesses are waking up to this. I also think that people are just plain bored with them.
Shayla agreed, and also queried the validity of blogging. I maintained however, that blogging was still valid, and that now I read more blogs than ever, particularly artist, designer blogs and art zines, from where I draw much of my inspiration. I believe more now than ever, that blogging is still a crucial business tool, and the most effective way to promote and maintain a strong web presence. Not only that, but blogging (as its constitutes ‘dynamic content’) drives traffic to your site, improves your SEO, as search engines are actively looking for new content. Traffic to my own site continues to grow, with unique IP visits averaging from 700 to over a 1000 a day (that’s not hits, numbers which beggar belief sometimes) and the majority of the traffic comes via my RSS feed. However, that doesn’t mean to say that trends haven’t changed, because they have.
My own view is, that people now favour image led web content, and the success of both Pinterest and Instagram give weight to that. Last night I did some research online about current social networking trends, looked at a lot stats and articles, and my findings proved I was right. I also spent time researching attitudes to blogging, and the results were interesting. I found two good articles that dealt with the issue of blogging and its popularity (Is Blogging Dead and Five Reasons why Blogging is not Dead or Dying), both of which make good cases for the fact that active blogging is still popular and important, but that peoples tastes have changed, and what constitutes interesting content.
Blogs that appeal to me the most, are the ones that have a lot of image content. For me the picture tells the story. I like to see colour, form, texture. I like posts that are upbeat and inspire me. What I am not interested in, is angst driven, earnest and worthy blog posts, and people whining about their lot. Sorry, harsh I know, but that’s how I feel.
In my research for articles and posts about blogging popularity, I did come across a lot of posts from people maintaining that blogging was dead. However, the bulk of them were from people complaining how their blogs used to be ‘so popular’, but that ‘stats were down’, and ‘people don’t comment anymore’. Sadly, the majority of posts making these statements didn’t feature content or stories that were very inspiring or interesting. So, hardly surprising.
As for myself. Well, I know that I don’t blog a lot about personal issues, but that is because I am quite a private person, and don’t feel comfortable with sharing my personal and intimate details on the web. However, that doesn’t mean to say that I shouldn’t make more effort to talk about more meaningful issues and subjects, rather than just posting pretty pictures and my latest creative projects. Promoting debate, and talking about the things that are meaningful and important to me, is a valid exercise for which I need to make more effort to undertake.
Do I care if people comment as much as they used to? No. As I said, traffic continues to grow. I do in fact, get emails from people telling me how much they like my blog. Perhaps I should take a leaf out of Lisa Congdon’s book and switch off the commenting feature altogether. But, I probably wont, because I like people to have the option to have their say, voice an opinion, or provide feedback if they wish to do so.
So, with that in mind, long live the blog!!