Two words: Social Media
It’s not that I hate social media. I actually think it has some really great points, it’s brilliant for keeping in touch with friends and family and sharing information. Professionally, it’s a significant part of my job – recently I even had to go to Facebook’s UK HQ and saw first hand what a scarily brilliant business it is.
It can’t be ignored that there are many bad points however, the propagation of ‘Fake News’, the idea that people only put the sunny, filtered aspect of their lives online, exploitation and my personal pet peeve – an obsession with follower stats.
When I first started blogging I diligently read all the blogger rules. You NEED to have twitter, insta, facebook, pinterest etc and you MUST increase your follower numbers. Apparently you do this by liking accounts in your ‘niche’ and expecting them to do you the courtesy of liking you back. You SHOULD download an app that lets you know who those pesky people who don’t follow you back are and you MUST join a ‘tribe’ or ‘pod’ so you can have a guaranteed number of social media likes/comments/whatevs, even if your content is wank. Errrrr come on folks! It’s all just so disingenuous. Surely you would rather have no social media ‘following’ than from forced social media aherm ‘friends’ who only follow you in hope of a follow back?
I do get that bloggers want to expose their musings to as many willing eyes as possible and that social media plays an essential function in this. A recent post of mine ‘This baby won’t change my life’ had a bit of a moment. I got over 1000 views the evening I posted it, ie, about x 100 more than normal! This is almost entirely down to putting it on Facebook and it getting on a bit of a roll from people liking it. Despite one friend saying it was basically a contraceptive device disguised as a blog post, it was really nice to write something that clearly chimed with people. The magazine I work on recently featured some of the uber mummy bloggers such as my blog-idol the Unmummsy Mum and the mum from the achingly hip ‘of daughters’ family. They all said it was organic Facebook likes that gave them real momentum and launched their blog and subsequent careers. So whilst I’m in absolutely no way putting myself in the same league as those guys, the principle is the same. Strong content rather than an overly contrived social media presence is the way to hit the big league, if that’s what you want to do.
It’s made me realise that I’m going to just concentrate on the elements of blogging that I enjoy. By far and away the aspect I enjoy most is thinking up and writing the actual posts. So that, dear reader, is what I’m going to do. No beautifully themed insta posts of me staring into middle distance or continuous social oomph-ed twitter posts here and if no one reads this then so what. I know there’s still a tree in the forest.