Why Blogs are Not Dying

by Elena on April 26, 2012 in blogging about blogging,Career Transition

“Blogs are slogs” according to a USA Today article by Roger Wu on April 20. “With the emergence of social media, more companies are replacing blogs with nimbler tools requiring less time and resources…”

My dad, who I might consider hiring to develop my (non existent) business plan for my transition from teaching to writing/social media, shared this article with me. I read it on the heels of reading Gigi’s discussion promoting post about the radio silence out here in blog land.

And I started thinking….are blogs dying? Are they being replaced by Pinterest or Instagram or You Tube Channels?

why-blogs-are-not-dying | Ciao Mom

My answer is no. Because clearly after almost three years of being at this, I am an expert. (or not).

Who Moved my Cheese?

Expert or not, I know one thing. There is change coming. Like in every business sector, there is evolution and innovation. For some this might mean closing up shop. But for others, it means means change. Change requires flexibility, in thinking and in habits. There are no two ways about it. Change is hard. But it does not mean that blogs are dying.

Wu’s article focuses on brand blogs.  The blogs that are housed on their websites, that provided brands with a tool to share their content.  I don’t disagree that these types of blogs are less necessary when we can just head to a Facebook page or a Twitter account and find out everything we need to know about a brand. But, what Wu also writes is that another reason that these blogs are failing at is attracting readers because the content is one big pitch. Who wants to read pitch after pitch? If I am going to visit a blog, I expect it to have a personal feel. To give me an opinion, to tell me a story, to shed some insight.

Which of course brings me back to this space. To the change that is happening in these parts. More pictures. More video. Twitter parties. Pinterest campaigns.  Less commenting, less reading. Less. Less. Less.

Except that….

We Blog to Use Our Voice

A recent Forbes article indicates that there are “18.9 million women who write blogs, according to the Pew Research Center.” This is the same article that discusses the question of if women can really earn a living blogging. Some do, some don’t. Some share more than others about their journey. Some collaborate. Some do not.  There are a lot of us trying to carve a name for ourselves in this space, in our own unique ways.

Even little old me is throwing her hat into the ring, preparing to launch my personal transition, attempting to earn a living in this space instead of in the classroom space where I have positioned myself as an expert and leader.  It is scary. And there are no certainties. The question of “what am I really doing?” creeps into my head every single day. I am even taking two days off from teaching to attend the Mom 2.0 Summit where the main topic is What is Next.

But then I remember. The story. It is all about the story. Whether I am writing about travel for TravelingMom, sharing my fitness journey with you, or documenting the efforts to foster self sufficiency in Haiti, it is all about the story.

Blogging may change. It may become more visual or more video oriented, it may become more about Twitter or Instagram, but it will still be about telling the story. Our stories. The stories that we look for because we are craving a connection or because we want to find someone else who understands. The stories about products or events that interest us. The stories that educate and inform.

And no, stories are not going anywhere anytime soon.

Ciao Mom

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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

Chaunie Brusie April 26, 2012 at 8:38 am

I think you hit the nail on the head. Personally, the more “real” a blog is to me, the more appealing. I find myself turning away from brand-y blogs, or blogs that seem to exist just for the sake of being a blog, if that makes any sense. I know the blogs that I follow I follow for the writer’s voice, humor, and realness. Thanks for sharing!

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Lisa Frame April 26, 2012 at 8:46 am

Excellent read and so true.

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Elena April 26, 2012 at 12:50 pm

Thank you my friend!

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angela April 26, 2012 at 9:19 am

The closing keynote at Blissdom was about blogs being the “campfire for women’s stories”. I loved that. The idea of us all sharing our negative and positive experiences to better ourselves in so many areas of our lives. I hope the blog isn’t dying; I care too much about the people who want to share their words with me :)

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Kristin @ What She Said April 26, 2012 at 10:14 am

Love this, Elena. Blogging really is all about sharing a story – as told in our voice. And stories are as old as time itself. So, I tend to agree with you in that, while the landscape of blogging may change, the stories aren’t going anywhere.

And good luck in your ventures! Can’t wait to hear more about them when we meet in person next week. :)

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Susan in the Boonies April 26, 2012 at 10:36 am

Agreed.

Stories have been around since Grog painted the cave walls, pointed, and grunted, “Grog. Kill. Wooly Heffalump.”

The stories remain.

And we remain riveted to the one who tells a good one.

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Elena April 26, 2012 at 12:50 pm

So true! Can you imagine what the cavemen would think of our new mediums for story telling?

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Mandy April 26, 2012 at 10:54 am

Couldn’t agree more, lady.

I’ve been blogging since 2004 and have seen a LOT of changes, ebbs and flows. It always comes down the the story, the writing, the writer.

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Elena April 26, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Thanks Mandy! And there is so much space for all types of writers!

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Anjie April 26, 2012 at 10:58 am

Agreed. I see the transformation happening everyday. Meanwhile, I still love my blog and use it as it should be used. Not a billboard or anything like that. It’s my place to write what I want, when I want for myself mainly and anyone else who might enjoy it.

Love this post.
Anjie
http://apaprikao.blogspot.com/

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gigi April 26, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Love this post, Elena.

While I wouldn’t go as far to say blogging is dying, I do think it’s morphing and transforming, as we find new ways to curate, to comment, to interact. The old model of read blog/comment is, IMO, going to go away completely at some point, to be replaced by the Next Big Thing, if you will. But I do agree that storytelling, be it in the form of a book, a blog, whatever – will never go away.

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Elena April 26, 2012 at 12:48 pm

Thanks Gigi! And I agree…i have a feeling that the next NEW thing will drive the interaction piece. People are busy and consuming social media with mobile devices. Interaction in that space is quick and looks more like a thumbs up than a comment. It is exciting and nerve wracking all at the same time.

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Ddigerati April 26, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Very well put! I agree with all points. You can’t put brand blogs in the same category. Blog readers want authenticity and connection. It is human nature to want to connect and blogs help provide a greater depth of sharing complimented by vehicles such as twitter and instagram. As a teacher myself, we are always emphasizing the power of communication and collaboration. Blogging is a platform to share knowledge, education, and inspiration!

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Shell April 26, 2012 at 2:46 pm

So true. There is change coming, but I don’t see blogs dying.

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Nina B April 26, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Saw this via Gigi on Twitter— I think you completely nailed it. Stories are not going anyway. Even Pinterest shots are telling a story in a way.

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Leslie April 26, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Great post! Brand blogs are boring. Brand FB pages can be boring. Brand Pinterest feeds and Twitter feeds can be boring. Advertising posing as something else is still advertising. Storytelling is different.

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Alison@Mama Wants This April 26, 2012 at 8:11 pm

Elena, great post and I agree! Blogs will exist in some form or other, because as you say, it’s about storytelling. And that’s been around a really long time.

Good luck with your new ventures!

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Natalie @MamaTrack April 26, 2012 at 10:52 pm

Such an interesting read. I don’t know where things are going to go. But I’m sure it’s somewhere. And I can’t wait to find out!

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Myrtle April 27, 2012 at 3:19 am

It is human nature to want to connect and blogs help provide a greater depth of sharing complimented by vehicles such as twitter and instagram. Thanks that you’ve shared.

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Corey Feldman April 27, 2012 at 12:35 pm

I don’t think blogs are really dying. I just posted about this in my new follow friday series. I think comments are dying because people will respond via twitter, facebook, email or whatever. I also think RSS readers make tracking traffic a little more challenging. I don’t think you will see a move to video though. Most people read blog at lunch or on a break, much easier to read than watch a video.

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KeAnne April 27, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Oh it’s that time of year for the annual “blogs are dying” pronouncement, eh? I heard this 3 years ago when Twitter started to become big and guess what, Mr. Wu? It didn’t happen! I’m not surprised that corporate and brand blogs are dying since they never learned the first tenet of blogging: have something to say. My company started its blog 4 years ago, and the first thing we advised our bloggers was to avoid making their posts sales pitches. I’m surprised so few blogs learned that lesson. You’re right: as long as we have stories to tell, blogs will survive & thrive.

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Nicole @MTDLBlog May 7, 2012 at 12:24 am

Insightful post! I think you’re right, things are changing! But, if we can evolve and roll with those changes it will all come together ok. I look forward to hearing how Mom 2.0 was! I would love to go next year. I’ll be at Type A! I see you’re attending! :-)

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Ashley @ It's Fitting May 8, 2012 at 1:56 pm

I TOTALLY agree! A blog is a journal, a snapshot of someone else’s story and life… It’s a way to connect with people on another level and reach out to people that may influence us, and help us on our life’s journey. I read other blogs because I’m genuinely interested in what they have to say. I like the whole story, as opposed to just the twitter feed.

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Martine June 12, 2012 at 11:13 am

Thanks for this, Elena. Blogging has changed so much, even for me, but there’s always a tug in me to go back to the real reason why I began my blog in the first place, and that’s to share, to tell stories, to relate with other moms, and to build relationships. I should never let influence or the changing scope of blogging deter me from that original purpose. Thank you for the reminder. Good luck to you, always! :)

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