Why blogging is bad for business, but good for people

 

{Updated 4/2014: I’ve stuck with blogging! And I’ve learned how to actually make money from it. Check it out HERE.}

Something has been weighing on my mind.

If you are a blogger, I apologize in advance.

Many words may be used to describe me. Curmudgeon is not one of them.

But I fear this post may make me out to be one. And I’m sorry if I shatter your dreams. But the truth is, if you are a blogger of any type, chances are, you’re never going to “make it.”

You know, get that million dollar book deal, have someone make your blog into a movie, have sponsors storming your inbox. Or even turn a profit.

But you know what?

That’s okay.

Here’s why.

 

The great experiment & elusive “success”

Blogging, as a business model via a form of self-expression & community building, is still working through kinks, uncharted territories.

Though blogging is relatively new to the world (less than 20 years old), there are an estimated 31 million blogs in the U.S. alone, over 100,000 WordPress blogs are created daily, & an estimated 156 million blogs worldwide, as of 2011 figures (so number is probably a bit higher since then).

While the shear number of blogs is daunting, no matter how big you are, it’s safe to say there is really no such thing as “arrived” in the blogging world.

(Unless of course you’re Joy, or perhaps Ree, but I digress.)

The point is, success in the blogging world is hierarchical totem pole that extends into the infinities.

Amy, of Frugal Mama has written about this elusive “success” in her post, “Why I Am Dropping the Business Side of Blogging.”

Among other things, she points out something that all starry-eyed new bloggers eventually realize:

How can one ever feel like she has done enough when there are always hundreds — thousands — of blogs that are more successful, more influential, more commented on, more Tweeted, more Pinned, more Liked?  When by hanging our shingle on the World Wide Web, we are potentially competing with everyone in the world, including multi-national corporations with their own websites?

A few people (say, the top 1%ish), have made actual, livable incomes via blogging.

But like an MLM, there’s only so much to go around (ie. eyeballs) & basing a business primarily on advertising revenues, therefore pageviews, is not a very good business model, no matter how you cut it.

The somber fact is that the people most benefiting from all the work of bloggers are typically not the bloggers themselves but the businesses that support the business of blogging (ie. blogging conferences, web programmers & graphic designers who design blogs, books & classes for bloggers, & of course, the advertisers).

 

I don’t want to sell things, I want to create

This Planet Money podcast on Andrew Sullivan was a timely one for me.

Andrew Sullivan proclaims: “I’m a journalist, not a businessman. I don’t want to be a businessman, I want to be a journalist.”

I get that. I hate how money & art/writing don’t often mix well.

Along the same lines, I relate with John Cusack’s character in the 1989 cult classic, Say Anything, when he says:

I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don’t want to do that.
(Here for more awesome Say Anything quotes)

I want to be able to talk about what I want to talk about, to create & express without thinking: is this good for business? How can I create more traffic? How can I get businesses to like me?

Another important issue is, like Amy, how can I promote products & businesses that I just ethically cannot get behind? How can I promote this message of a simple, frugal, compassionate life, while at the same time pitching products that I do not value & in good conscience cannot recommend to you?

Amy writes:

Many mom bloggers make an income by helping promote products or services for companies. But given my blog’s focus, how could I talk up paper towels when I know that rags work just as well and are better for the environment? How could I promote spaghetti sauce in a jar when I’ve already said how much better it is (and how easy) to make it at home?

When I first began this blog, over 4 years ago, I was clueless.

I didn’t know a thing about blogging–a little about writing, but nothing about technology & the world of blogs. About 3 years in, I realized I needed to do some revamping & educating, & polishing of skills. So I did. I redesigned my site, & thought: “I might as well try to make some money while I’m at it.”

I’ve dabbled in various things, worked with a few companies, done some advertising. But it all felt so…feigned. Just icky. I have a settled aversion to anything that feels spammy in any way, & I felt I was cheapening my product (my blog posts) by including anything that I didn’t 100% love &/or know.

Well the solution is easy, right? Just publish a cookbook or book & then I’ll be raking in the dough.

Muahhahhha! That’s funny.

Cookbook authors are notoriously under compensated for the time & money they put into each book. The cut they get from the publisher is paltry. You have a better chance winning the lottery than becoming a rich cookbook author, or any author, for that matter.

 

Are paid subscribers the answer?
Yes & no.

In the same Planet Money podcast, Robert Smith & Zoe Chace explores how Andrew Sullivan is one of the first bloggers to explore a potentially more sustainable business model, where readers pay a subscription fee to read more than 7 posts a month. Essentially, paid subscriptions. But like Robert Smith,  I am skeptical the subscription model will work for anyone but the top 1% of the 1%. So yes, paid subscriptions are the answer for the elite, but not for the average blogger.

Further, part of the beautiful thing about the internet is the free flow of information & communication.  The internet is what it is because it has made information essentially free. Though any good economist will tell you: there’s no such thing as free.

Which is true. Everything has a cost. And the hidden, & sometimes not so hidden cost of blogs come from the bloggers themselves. Mostly in time, but also in money, in quality of life, in real face-to-face interactions with others.

There’s been much talk amongst feminists about the digression of feminism, as many females of my generation have favored domesticity (ie. staying at home). One argument is that staying at home is perpetuating this idea of woman being okay with doing unpaid work.

It’s true, that one our greatest assets, as well as one of our potentially greatest weaknesses (think Weight Watchers), is that we nurture (maybe sometimes to a fault?) & we’re good at it. It’s in our DNA. It’s a part of our spiritual makeup.

But that same desire to help, which makes this world run, also makes us easy prey, like say, for corporations/businesses.

I’m not just talking through marketing (which there’s plenty of that), but also through devaluing the work of women. As it applies in this conversation, devaluing the work of female bloggers, who as whole put in a tremendous amount of time & energy into creating original content which more often than not, do not get compensated financially.

Are we suckers? Or just bleeding hearts dying to communicate, to connect, to be heard, & help others?

 

“Ya gotta respect yo self”

I’ve had opportunities to work with a few different companies & I receive solicitations on a somewhat frequent basis from companies who want to send me their products so I can write about it on the blog.

What’s that you say? You want to send me a jar of mayonnaise, & in exchange I’ll give you free advertising (via a review/post)?

Umm, no thanks.

I’m not going to whore myself out for a jar of mayonnaise (albeit vegan). I just value my blog & my readers more than that. Not saying I’m opposed to ever working with any advertiser or company, but it just have to feel 100% right for me to do it. And it never will be about the money, that’s for darn sure.

 

Traffic, traffic, it’s all about the traffic

So what happens when bloggers write to satisfy advertisers & sponsors in an effort to get more traffic?

Which FYI, there is no such thing in the blogging world as, “enough traffic.” Even Jill Smokler, of Scary Mommy (who gets more than 1/2 million page views a month) has talked about how she would like to get more traffic.

What happens, not always, of course, but something is compromised & posts become:

1) Homogeneous & palatable.
Easy to read. In a word, “clickable.”

Blogs should look like billboards!
After all, readers skim, they don’t read, right?

When I read this advice, Choosing Raw & Gluten-free Girl come to mind. Both food bloggers with a large loyal following, that defy this logic. Their posts are often longer, 1-2,000 word posts.

We may be busy, we may have a lot clamoring for our attention, but this doesn’t mean we don’t crave sustenance. It’s like constant snacking without really eating a solid meal. Easy to read blog posts may be that, but they’re not necessarily satisfying.

I’m the first to admit, no one wants to read unfiltered steam-of-consciousness style, gibbering. No one wants to read a steady flow of whining. Good formatting never hurt anyone, & for the love, please edit (!), but, humans are & should be capable of reading more than a few sentences at a time.

or

2) Controversial/Tabloid-ish.
Also, “clickable.”

Most notable, anything with celebrities (not really all that common in food blogging) or titles created just to lure people to the site

&/or

3) Pretty & “pinable.”

There’s nothing wrong with pretty, there’s nothing wrong with making images pinable. But when it’s only that, you’ve got to ask yourself–what am I doing?

Editor’s note: My dilemma with Pinterest (don’t get me wrong, I still think Pinterest has value, don’t believe me, check out my Pinterest boards) & Instagram, in particular, is that they are image heavy & language poor. We ought to question when the majority of our communication is via images, rather than words. There is value in words, & I fear, as a society, we’re taking the easy route & putting words on the back  burner. We should ask ourselves: what will be the repercussions of this movement towards the image-based, rather than language-based?

 

You communist!

Let me make it clear I think money is great.

And I’m not against anyone making as much money as they can (as long as it’s done in an ethical, honest fashion).

But money is only great beceause it helps people. It makes it possible for people to have & support families, to eat, to live somewhere safe & comfortable, to have hobbies, to pursue charity work, all sorts of good things.

So bloggers, make money. Make all the money you can. But I hope that it’s not at the expense of quality content that is both original & thoughtful.

 

So what?

I know what you’re thinking (maybe):

Great Janae, you’ve given me all this, what’s to be done about it? You’re saying giving content away for free is not a good business strategy & there are way too many blogs in the world. So why should I try, I’m never going to make any money anyway.

Well I’ll tell you why you try–
because you love it.

 

Though I still feel like a clueless ompf (yes, I just made up that word) I can’t tell you how much I’ve learned about technology in the past year alone. I am amazed/inspired/lifted by the interactions I have with readers, with other bloggers, & the greater online world.

There’s value in creating things that don’t necessarily translate into dollars & cents in your pocket. I know it’s hard to believe that’s true when we live in a world that is driven by the almighty dollar, but trust me on this one. People, & helping people is where it’s at.

Perhaps you’ll make a few dollars along the way, (I have yet to do that), maybe you won’t.

Maybe you’ll be the next Julie Powell, or maybe you’ll be better than that.

Maybe you’ll just be an incredibly decent human being, writing, sharing, & blogging in an honest, beautiful way.

♥♥♥

 

P.S. If you read this entire blog post, congrats–2,140 words! That means you just defied the assumption that people online are all a bunch of lame brains who cannot read that many words strung together. So, way to go.

(& thanks for reading, please comment, I’d love to hear what you have to say.)

 

I’ve written more thoughts on blogging:
Why I blog: Parts One, Two, & Three
Intuitive Blogging
10 things I’ve learned in 5 years of blogging
Blogging: 13 things I’d wish I’d known sooner


Comments


  1. alanna
    on May 28, 2013 at 3:35 pm said:

    I read every word and agree.
    For a while I was enchanted by the idea of creating something wonderful that also had the added bonus of potentially being a source of income. Best of all worlds right? After reading A LOT about the reality of community building and taking a few classes to boot, I had some decisions to make.
    A few months ago I thought and prayed a lot about this. Did I want to move forward with my ideas even if I never made a dime? After some soul searching I decided, YES! Removing money from the equation was actually liberating. I was able to focus on my passion for the project and get excited for all the right reasons.
    Thank you for this timely post. It resonates with me more than I can say.

  2. Melanie - Que Means What
    on May 9, 2013 at 1:51 am said:

    I read over 2,000 words today thanks to you! … on one website, about one topic 🙂 Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this topic. I recently attended a conference and actually came home with a new take on blogging and letting go of the ‘business’ side and focus on content (where I started). I still will do sponsored posts when they make sense of course. There are some brands that are just wonderful to work with. I do have those “I want to make it soooo bad” moments and that’s okay too. I *love* blogging in the sense that I’ve created some wonderful networks, developed incredible relationships and have learned so, so, so much. On top of that it has given me ‘real work’ in writing and social media consulting. Thanks again!

  3. Inkling
    on May 7, 2013 at 7:02 pm said:

    I have some favorite blogs and some former favorite blogs. Because some of what I do centers around birth trauma, I have a lot of related blogs on my reading list. When the Feminist Breeder decided to start a subscription policy, she lost me as a reader. But more than losing me as a reader, I have to admit that much of my respect and feeling of being on the same team faded. It felt like it became all about money, and not about helping people.

    My favorite blogs help me learn something new, inspire me to keep growing, and are authentic and open. When a blogger is willing to be vulnerable or to share what she is learning so that others on similar journeys might benefit in some way, I appreciate that.

    Back when another blog I wrote (that has now been closed down) was gaining in popularity and business solicitations were coming in, it was tempting to consider. As much as it would have been fun to figure out a way to earn income doing what I love to do, it’s been more fun to be real and to create real relationships with some other bloggers who value connection more than stats.

    I like coming to your blog because you are real, challenge me to grow, and inspire me to learn more and try new ideas with eating/cooking for my family.

    • Janae Wise
      on May 8, 2013 at 10:22 am said:

      I agree with you, when you take money out of the equation, it becomes truly about helping people through self-expression & community building. Not saying it can’t happen under a paid subscription model, but I think it will inevitably become more elitist/exclusionary, which has it’s drawbacks.

      I’ve never heard of the Feminist Breeder. When did she start doing subscriptions. I looked at her site–she definitely has opinions & is entertaining to read.

      As much as it would have been fun to figure out a way to earn income doing what I love to do, it’s been more fun to be real and to create real relationships with some other bloggers who value connection more than stats.

      I agree. I feel like I’ve been given so much. Would blogging be more valuable to me if I made just a little bit of money? What about a lot more money? It all becomes realtive, & I think there are just some things (for me) that ought to be done primarily out of the goodness I want to share with others.

      Again, I’m not against anyone making (or trying to) make as much money as they can. The free market will let them know what works & what doesn’t. In the end, blogging is based on trust, & if readers suspect even a hint of reason to mistrust they will go running. Only time will reveal where how this blogging game will unfold.

  4. Johanna GGG
    on May 7, 2013 at 7:46 am said:

    Great post – I love blogs for their content far above any design. I find that advertisers can really affect the look of a blog and they don’t care, and I saw a blog survey just tonight where the feedback was that the readers aren’t interested in promotions and giveaways.

    I have written about blogging as a punk activity where people learn from having a go. And it may not be that suddenly they have a food writing career but that suddenly blogging is part of a big picture that does make a difference. Wish I had more time to comment but am glad I was pointed in the direction of this post!

  5. Alexandra @ Delicious Knowledge
    on May 6, 2013 at 9:56 am said:

    I read the whole post 🙂
    I completely agree with everything you said here. I would love to be a self-employed blogger but reality is sinking in and.. that’s just not likely. And I am completely OK with the path and journey I am on. I blog for me!I blog to bring easy, vegan recipes to the world and to share my nutrition thoughts as an RD. For me, that’s enough. I also love meeting other bloggers and connecting with them. That’s what keeps me going on days when I think “Hello? Is anyone reading this?”
    I hate sponsored posts. I get that you have to do them if you really want to make money but I feel like it’s the equivalent of selling out. I cringe a little when my favorite blogs do sponsored posts. I get it, but I don’t love it.
    Thanks for your thoughts!

    • Janae Wise
      on May 6, 2013 at 11:31 am said:

      I too am not crazy about sponsored posts. But some really, really good bloggers can pull it off rather seemlessly.

      That’s awesome that you’re a vegan R.D. We could certainly use more in that field. & thanks for commenting, I’m glad to know about you & your blog now.

  6. Ricki
    on May 4, 2013 at 8:41 am said:

    As usual, a thoughtful, insightful post. I think you are so bang-on on so many levels. I, too, have not marketed “aggressively” and while I’d love ads on my site that represent products I truly love and can endorse, I guess those particular companies are not always the ones who wish to advertise! And I agree, spending too much time on the cosmetic aspects of the blog can deflect your energy from the core and most important part: the writing. I love all the connections I’ve made through blogging and the new friends I’ve met. That alone is worth it. Though suppose an income would be nice, too. . . (and don’t get me started talking about books!! Every word you said is true–no money in that–well, maybe for the likes of Kris Carr et al!). 😉 Now, excuse me while I have to go get a hold of Say Anything, which I haven’t seen yet! 😀

    • Janae Wise
      on May 4, 2013 at 10:29 am said:

      I, too, have not marketed “aggressively” and while I’d love ads on my site that represent products I truly love and can endorse, I guess those particular companies are not always the ones who wish to advertise!
      I know, how can I advertise Costco, my CSA, kale, Goodwill…? These things I have not yet figured out. But I’m sure when I do, I’ll be rolling in the dough!

      And I agree, spending too much time on the cosmetic aspects of the blog can deflect your energy from the core and most important part: the writing.
      Unfortunately, not every blogger is a writer to boot. There are a few writers writers in fashion blogging (manrepeller is one) & other blogging genres that aren’t necessarily “thinking” blogs, but I’ve found particularly in the the food & design blogging world, the writing leaves much to be desired. On that note, you & a few others that I can think of, would fit into this category of writer’s writers (Gena, & GF girl are a few others). Now, to be fair, blogging is usually more than just writing, but for me (& I’m sure others would agree), if the writing’s not there, I’m less inclined to stay.

      (and don’t get me started talking about books!! Every word you said is true–no money in that–well, maybe for the likes of Kris Carr et al!)
      It makes me so sad that cookbook authors don’t make more. I KNOW (kinda) how much time it takes to develop a good recipe that is worthy of a cookbook. Not to mention the cost of food for recipe testing. Also, blogs help, but mostly hurt, I think, cookbook sales. I mean, why buy the book when you can get everything for free from pinterest? I still remain a cookbook buyer (despite already owning more than my fair share) & I think that the cookbook as we know it is not going anywhere, it’s just a shrinking, saturated very competitive market. On that upbeat note, I’m THRILLED about your new cookbook & want you to know I want to help you promote your book in any way I can (twitter, fb, blog). Because hello! Gluten-free, vegan, sugar-free??! You’re awesome & I want to help you get your awesomeness out there. So let me know how I can help you.

      I love all the connections I’ve made through blogging and the new friends I’ve met.
      Never before in the history of the world have women been able to connect & unite like we can now. It’s remarkable, really.

      Though suppose an income would be nice, too. .
      I sure wouldn’t complain.

      Thanks for all the love, Ricki. You are the BEST.

  7. Adina | Gluten Free Travelette
    on May 3, 2013 at 10:34 pm said:

    Yes to everything you’ve said here Janae. Your honest and thoughtful posts always ensure that I want to read them all the way through.

    While I’ve always known that blogging is not going to be my business (just not realistic given our financial situation and priorities for the future) – it’s been a wonderful way for me to make friends after moving away from my home state and a perfect way to explore the topics I’m passionate about.

    • Janae Wise
      on May 4, 2013 at 9:28 am said:

      Adina, I don’t know if you realize (you probably do), how freakin’ amazing it is that you get to do so much travel, & how your blog will become for you (particularly in later years) this awesome catalog of all your adventures. You are sweet & smart, & I’m so glad you are sharing with us your trompings around the world.

      And thank you for your kind compliment.

      • Adina
        on May 7, 2013 at 2:52 pm said:

        So I’ve actually had this 2 month plus break where I’ve only traveled on personal trips and not for work. It’s made me really recogonize how fortunate I am to have a job where I get to travel and has shown me how much I want travel to be a part of my life – it’s one of those things that just makes me feel energized and happy.

        For the blogging part – I use my own blog as a resource when I travel to places I’ve been before. I think that’s why I love blogs so much – they’re such a great resource while on the go.

  8. lfwfv
    on May 3, 2013 at 8:44 pm said:

    I too read every word 🙂

    I 100% agree with this statement:
    “THERE’S VALUE IN CREATING THINGS THAT DON’T NECESSARILY TRANSLATE INTO DOLLARS & CENTS IN YOUR POCKET. I KNOW IT’S HARD TO BELIEVE THAT’S TRUE WHEN WE LIVE IN A WORLD THAT IS DRIVEN BY THE ALMIGHTY DOLLAR, BUT TRUST ME ON THIS ONE. PEOPLE, & HELPING PEOPLE IS WHERE IT’S AT.”

    Amen, Janae!

    • Janae Wise
      on May 4, 2013 at 9:34 am said:

      Thank you Tanya.

      Yes we have to eat, & thank the dear Lord we live in a country where we can pursue our passions & still do that. I’m disgusted with how everything is perverted into a money making machine. Can’t good, beautiful things exist, just to exist. Or must we always figure out a way to “monetize” EVERYTHING?

      Again, don’t want to sound anti-capitalist here, but money is only as valuable as it used to do good (ie. help others live a better life, including yourself).

      As always, thanks for the love, dear! ox

  9. Carrie Chapman
    on May 3, 2013 at 8:32 pm said:

    I also read every word of this post (and the above comments haha)! I loved it. LOVED IT. As someone who has been blogging since like 2005, the whole movement has been very quick and surreal. I started a blog because my mom was sick of emailing my short stories to her friends, and wanted to give them a website instead. Then it became a place to document my happiness. Then, a place to connect with other bloggers and support small business. Then it became a place where I was stretched to keep up with the creativity around me and I liked it. Then I didn’t like it. And now my blog is comfortably my own little “personal” space. Notice that unless you live in a cool place with a photographer capturing your every move, there are not a whole lot of “personal blogs” anymore. This is sad to me. Everything seems so marketed.
    There was a while where I was getting comments all of the time about how to “improve” my blogging and I hated it. It felt like someone was coming into my living room and “just saying” my new couch was ugly. I wrote one post where I made it VERY clear that I wasn’t going to change for readership. And I stick by that. I love my readers, but I also love knowing that they are there for ME and not there to shape me into some dancing monkey.
    What’s hilarious is that putting aside the odd “dream” of blogging as a way to make income helped me to become even more transparent on the internet and allowed my creativity to flow and eventually start my own online business that is doing much better than my blog ever could.
    That’s why I love coming here so much and reading your posts. You are open and make yourself vulnerable enough to connect. If there is anything I would change about my blogging style, it would be to be more like that.

    • Janae Wise
      on May 4, 2013 at 9:48 am said:

      I love my readers, but I also love knowing that they are there for ME and not there to shape me into some dancing monkey.
      The dancing monkey bit is my favorite part! I love the evolution that you’ve experienced over the years with your blog, that now you are comfortable in your own “blogging skin.”

      Notice that unless you live in a cool place with a photographer capturing your every move, there are not a whole lot of “personal blogs” anymore. This is sad to me. Everything seems so marketed.
      Yes, it does sadden me that once someone starts getting “big” it quickly becomes about selling things, then they add editors, photographers, & a small staff to man what was once a personal, boutique blog. I guess that’s the way of capitalism, but the thing I love most is feeling like I’m reading someone’s journal. I don’t care if you’re a fashion, design, food, or mommy blogger. I want to feel a connection to you, the writer, & if I don’t, it’s hard for me to care. No matter how pretty/cool/pinable your photos are. Because frankly, most any one these days with photoshop & a DSLR camera can take interesting pictures, but many people cannot open up & share themselves in an interesting/authentic way. Not saying I want every blogger to spill their guts or share their innermost secrets & dreams (although that *might* be cool too…), but I do want the essence of what they are doing to be REAL, not monetized. Which some bloggers can do both, despite getting really big. I think Ree Drummond is one that comes to mind–she has managed to stay fairly down-to-earth & women relate with that. Which maybe, is why she’s such a success.

      What’s hilarious is that putting aside the odd “dream” of blogging as a way to make income helped me to become even more transparent on the internet and allowed my creativity to flow and eventually start my own online business that is doing much better than my blog ever could.
      And, your blog does help you advertise your Etsy shop. Which I didn’t really mention in the post, but Etsy shop owners (& other small business owners), can really use blogging to their advantage in that it helps their customers get to know who they are & what they stand for. I think Etsy shops & blogs go really well together. I’m glad you’re finding success with that. (I love your smart & sassy totes–I ordered a few for mother’s day gifts.)

      You are open and make yourself vulnerable enough to connect. If there is anything I would change about my blogging style, it would be to be more like that.
      Probably one of the kindest compliments I’ve recieved from a reader. You have no idea how much it means (although you probably do, since you also blog!) to receive that kind of validation. Thank you.

  10. Gena
    on May 3, 2013 at 1:59 pm said:

    I, for one, read every word of this post.

    I really have to agree with you. As someone with a substantial following who still doesn’t see much income (perhaps that’s my fault for not monetizing aggressively enough, but still), I really have come to appreciate that blogging has given me friends, a sense of my own talents, an outlet from pre-med life, and a way of creating a brand. Also, the business benefits of blogging aren’t always easy to quantify in monthly income, but they’re important nonetheless: blogging can lead to getting hired in a cool job, writing a book (another endeavor that won’t pay, but is cool and a wonderful way to share a good message), or meeting people who ultimately help to bolster your professional circle.

    And if none of that happens, blogging is still an essential form of self-expression. I’m a feminist who does feel strongly that it behooves women to be financially independent, but I’d be crazy to say that there’s anything wrong with women expressing themselves–online, in private, or in any context. That can only be for the good, and whether or not it’s lucrative is irrelevant. Let’s not start judging other women for finding a creative outlet–blogging can be whatever we want it to be!

    • Janae Wise
      on May 3, 2013 at 7:00 pm said:

      I, for one, read every word of this post.

      Well, thank you Gena!

      perhaps that’s my fault for not monetizing aggressively enough

      I’m glad that you have not “monetized” aggressively. The thing I love about you is when you review products & companies, you do so in a way that is genuine. You feature stuff that I know you can get behind, & I love that about you. Your blend of narrative, recipes, & occasional product feature works, because it’s authentic to you.

      “Monetizing” has a negative connotation (fair or not). Yes, I know there are many many bloggers who make money, but it’s more to do with e-book sales, etsy shops, or they have major sponsorships (a lot of design & fashion bloggers do this). Anything else (like selling links, or paid blog posts) are too close to selling out, in my opinion.

      blogging is still an essential form of self-expression.

      Yes! An important form at that. It’s given women this powerful platform to express & connect with others. Amazing, really, when you think of our ability to connect with literally thousands, even millions (for some) with just a simple thing as a blog.

      That can only be for the good, and whether or not it’s lucrative is irrelevant.
      Yes, this is exactly what I’m trying to say here. It’s not about the money. The ability to express & create has value beyond the monetary.

      And for the record, I love the CR brand & hope you pursue it further, more than just your blog. ox