I have a feeling we’re about to see more people take to blogging– or come back to it. I obviously have a vested interest in blogging “coming back” since I, duh, blog. But I’m not even coming from this as a blogger exactly, but more as a consumer of social media who happens to also create content for social media. I’ve had a front row seat watching social media evolve over the years. I’ve seen the good, the great, and the downright ugly.
Here’s why I think we’ll see more people blogging again.
The elephant in the room is probably artificial intelligence, so I’m just going to address it quickly, though I think larger things are at play. I think AI is definitely going to affect how much more content we see online. And while I can see that being interpreted as a negative thing (content being written specifically for SEO by AI and taking over the search engine results), I think people are going to be seeking out content written by real people. Sure, a perfectly written SEO-optimized post is going to rank better with Google (and perhaps it is your first visit), if you’ve ever read an article like this you know how annoying it is to actually find the information you’re looking for. It’s written for SEO, not for consumers.
For example, we’re heading to Copenhagen right? I’ve landed on a few posts that are written generically and, yes, there is some valuable information there, but is it the information I want? Not really. I want to read about someone’s personal review of the hotel we’re staying in, I want to see someone writing about the cafe they visited every day while they lived there, etc. etc. While that’s one example that is just personally really relevant to me, but I feel like you’ve probably experienced something similar too.
Okay, so AI is here to stay. Got it. Where do actual non-robot bloggers come in?
The world has more content creators than ever. Scrolling through TikTok in January was pretty crazy because you could tell so many people made it their New Year’s resolutions to try to become a content creator. It felt like nearly everyone of all ages and demographics and interests wanted in on the game. (And to be clear, I think there’s room for everybody at the table. No gatekeeping here.) But here’s the dangerous part of the game…. if you’re just on social media, you’re at the mercy of these platforms.
These platforms can disappear tomorrow, you can be banned from your account without warning, and you don’t have control of your content. But most crucially, you have to play by their rules. You want your content to be seen by the right “eyes”? Today you may have to become an expert photographer, tomorrow you might have to figure out ways to take creative photos with your iPhone only, and next week you’ll have to figure out how to create video content. Oh and then the week after that? You need to go back to photos. Wait no… photo carousels. Use hashtags, but not those hashtags, wait that’s too many hashtags. Oh your videos need to have a hook, no actually you need to just post a seven second video, okay now dance! I think consumers are going to be exhausted by this (is this app for photos? is it for videos? why am I seeing this video? where are my friends?) and creators need to get smarter about where they put their content.
This is where I think we’re starting to see the shift. Newsletters are being pushed hard, subscriptions are being pushed hard. You see it specifically with the rise of Substack in particular. I’m not saying blogging is the perfect answer, I think for a lot of creators it won’t be a priority still and a lot of consumers won’t find themselves reading blogs. But I do think we’re going to see more of it being created and I think there is a big enough sector of people consuming content from creators who want more than what social media can offer.
In addition to following two hundred creators you’re interested in on Instagram and TikTok, I can see people wanting to then add five to ten creators they want to follow more in depth. I could be totally wrong, but that’s just what I’m predicting. I see it as a consumer, where I’m following people and have kind of “lost the plot” because they’re one story of many, like flipping through the channels on TV– just getting snippets here and there and have no idea who that person really is. It’s not that blogging will replace social media, but I think people are craving more personal content outside of a 7-second clip that shows up on your FYP or a 15 second story frame on Instagram.
Anyway, I could talk about this forever because I find it so interesting. I will, of course, keep blogging myself. And I’m happy to help anyone who wants to start a blog or add a blog to their existing social media.
In the meantime, I’ll share a few blogs that I love reading every morning:
THE STRIPE: Grace recently moved to Charleston from Brooklyn. She also just moved into a stunning home! I love seeing what she’s reading and trying to discovering her skincare secrets.
HALF BAKED HARVEST: HBH is my favorite food blog! I read it religiously and find myself pinning almost everything she makes– and returning to our favorites frequently. Her food photography is also 💯 and she shares her adventures in addition to recipes, too.
EMILY HENDERSON: Emily now has a content team, but every time she posts something new I dig in. They’re always super long posts (so lots of content to sink your teeth into) and she’s very vulnerable and thoughtful in her posts. I’ve especially loved learning more about her family’s move out of LA during the pandemic to a farmhouse they’re renovating in Portland.
CUP OF JO: Cup of Jo is probably the OG OG lifestyle blogger. As a trained journalist, to me her blog is much more like a digital magazine. She now has a team of writers too, and they bring in different voices all the time. I look forward to her new posts every day!
PS I miss Google Reader every day, but have found Feedly as an okay substitute. Not perfect, but it gets the job done.