Lots of people are aspiring to be bloggers, influencers and key opinion leaders nowadays… but what does that really entail? As a self-proclaimed blogger for, gosh it’s been like five years now(!), I was inspired to give my slice of insight about what it means for me. After all, one of my most popular posts was What Blogging Has Done To Me.
Just a disclaimer: obviously my views don’t represent everyone, and I’m not writing this to tell you how to be a blogger (though here’s a starter kit).
Being a blogger could mean a lot of things, and at times it is thrilling, breathtaking and eye opening. But I’m not here to talk about that. Here are a few things being a blogger is NOT…
1. It doesn’t mean you’ll be rich
Oh yes. Being a super successful blogger could mean having your own business, your own company, even leading you to amazing/lucrative gigs. But that doesn’t happen to everyone. Success isn’t guaranteed and it could be one in a million.
Truth is. Your blog might never take off without a controversy or a whole lot of mental and financial investment. It might not even take off AFTER those things. Your readers could only be your mother, your boyfriend, and your cat. That’s why those who stick it out, does it for their passion.
2. You could be rolling in freebies
How’s that something DON’T want, you ask. Before you dismiss me as cray cray, hear me out. Yes, bloggers LIVE for new experiences and being the first to try products. But if you have a niche, a passion and integrity, there are going to be times where you won’t like what you’re given.
As a polite but opinionated person (#consideratebitch), I sometimes find freebies restricting. A) because you need to maintain good relationships with PRs and brands, and B) because you can’t be someone who loves everything. So basically, sometimes you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Honesty is a great policy, but even if you dgaf about money, it just feels so much better to have the liberty to write your opinions on your own dough.
PRO TIP: if you ever don’t love something from the get go, you can politely refuse it. If it’s post-usage, you can always inform the PR first and not write something instead of writing something semi-fake.
3. It’s not easier than having a normal job
It’s sort of the same deal as point one. It might seem like it’s easy, even like a dream, to live going to glamorous events, snapping selfies and casually reviewing free products and meals. But hey, you’ll be surprised how much work goes behind a casual blog.
Even for a person who barely does any work for her blog, there are content to plan, photos to take, videos to make, stats to look at, and people to network with. Not to forget pitches you have to make, cold emails you have to send, ideas you have to dream up, the blogging scene you have to keep up with.
But the scariest of it all, at least to me, is how it can take away the joy in the things you love (like most passion jobs). When you’re tasting 10 times a week, when you’re stepping onto chairs and stooping down for a good angle, when you’re planning and re-planning your content and can’t seem to get an actual word in about your feelings, when you’re made up on a Sunday just for one photo or tutorial… To me, it takes a bit of the fun away. And honestly? This 24/7 isn’t for everyone.
4. So why do it? How do I make it?
Honestly? I don’t have an answer for you. And if anyone says they do, I’ll take a pinch of salt with that offer. Because no matter the amount of strategy and e-courses and incentives and campaigns and plans you have, the blog runs on your passion. It is a labour of love, it is a hobby, it is you, having something to share with the world, putting yourself out there ready to be judged.
And if you don’t love it, I honestly hope that you find something else to start a business with! If you’re not ready to work HARD on something that will sometimes feel boring, uninspired, pointless, even down right a waste of time… then you’re not ready to be a blogger.
But if you are? Oh you’ll be joining the most wonderful of communities, filled with fun, friendly and helpful people. You’ll be meeting new and inspired people, having conversations that will fuel your dreams. You’ll have opportunities to do things you’ve never done before, see things you won’t ever see otherwise.
If you’re a blogger, I hope you find fuels beyond monetary gains, I hope you find joy and support from this strange but mostly lovely world of internet and blogging. If not, well FYI – it takes a shit ton of work to look effortless.
till next time,
(very very old) Photos by Gabrielle Salonga,
hat tip to Maisha Concept for the gorgeous frocks.