Late in 2016, I began to feel disenchanted with blogging. Clickbait titles, the pressure of themes, feeling like you have to own a must-have item, being unsure if you even really went out for lunch because there were no photos to prove it… It’s a truth that I’ve spoken about before and I’ve already crossed the hurdle of getting back on my feet with it all, but I thought today I’d speak a little about the importance of engaging with content and how big – or small – a part it actually plays in the enjoyability of blogging to me.
I wrote my undergraduate dissertation on blogs as an emerging media platform in 2012. That was five years ago. Emerging platform. Just like my dissertation anticipated, the blogosphere has burst onto the scene as a channel in its’ own right and I wholeheartedly believe that it deserves its’ status. Agree or disagree with blogging as a career, you cannot argue that it isn’t an incredibly influential platform. Raise your hands if you’ve honestly, hand on heart, never purchased something after having seen it on somebody’s blog, Instagram, Facebook profile photo, heck, an album posted after somebody’s night out or holiday. Blogs make it all too easy to get one step further to carving out the life you believe you want, whether that’s with that cheeky new lipstick or trying out their makeup storage system or their capsule wardrobe tips.
Beat the algorithms… naturally
Something that is constantly being thrown around is that the apps we all love to hate are changing and it often feels as though it’s for the worse. Cough cough, Instagram.
So Instagram shows you the posts that it believes you want to see… Why not take this as an opportunity to show that blogger/celebrity/friend that you love what they’re doing? Human nature means that we naturally get jealous of others and that’s completely normal. Honestly. I’ve a friend who told me that she never ‘likes’ my posts on Instagram out of deference to the fact that she doesn’t understand how my photos can flow seamlessly from one to another, reasoning that ‘other people will anyway’! (The cheek of it!)
Be honest: how many times have you seen a beautiful image on Instagram or a hilarious Tweet on Twitter and scrolled straight past? There is just SO much to consume these days that I must admit even I don’t engage as much as I should. Let’s get back to basics and use these apps, a like costs nothing, after all. My engagement dropped whilst I was away on holiday and couldn’t keep up with regular scrolling, but soared back up when I found time to double-tap all of the good stuff again.
Do to others as you would have them.
I don’t know about you but I LOVE the hour each day that I put aside to reply to new comments on Daisybutter. Whilst admittedly engagement on blogs nowadays is awful (I used to receive 80+ comments per post and nowadays struggle to hit 20!), it’s still one of my favourite parts of blogging. I love hearing from people that’ve taken time out of their day to catch up with little ol’ me in a world that is often too loud, crowded and overwhelming. I think there’s a real ‘something’ in keeping in touch with readers and fellow bloggers and creatives. Networking in its simplest form leads to great things, right? I also feel so much more motivated and inspired to write and post fun stuff after a little chit-chat, whether in comments, on Twitter or through Instagram. It makes me feel a whole lot less crazy for writing stuff to the anonymous Internet 😉
Help others help you
2016 was arguably the year of the advice post. ‘How To’ guides and such were absolutely everywhere and it terrified me. The aspect of blogging that I adore the most is that it highlights how beautifully unique and facet-filled we all are and I couldn’t help but think that these posts could disillusion you and bring you down. Personally, I like my blog to read as a little everyday accompaniment, a place that you can go to for escapism, to check in with a pal, find new shopping obsessions and more. Engaging with content is more important than ever as we enter a new age where blogs are popping up quicker than you can say ‘Adblock’. Be open and honest and true, ask questions, compliment that girl on her brows, answer questions, disclose sponsored content, ask for your readers’ opinions, listen to constructive criticism, continue to be as creative as you possibly can.
And, you, if you read this entire post, +25 Daisybutter points to you! Pray tell, what was your favourite thing about the weekend gone?