My blog is turning six years old this year and despite the continuous rise of “influencers” on social media and the demand for video content, I can still envision my website thriving for a decade or more. While others would consider blogging as obsolete in a world where TikTok and Instagram creators earn more in one post, I continue to write for many different reasons. After all, I aim to create a space where my thoughts will live on even after I’m gone and I wouldn’t want to experience another Friendster or MySpace moment where everything can disappear in a snap once a more popular app or website pops up. However, it’s also important to acknowledge the fact that people now have a short attention span so short and long-form content usually go hand-in-hand in terms of reaching our preferred audience. Short-form content can serve as a teaser or an appetizer online while the long-form articles remain to be the main course if people want to know or see more.
If you’re an aspiring blogger who is hesitating to share your thoughts to the world due to the rise of other forms of media, here are some reasons on why you should still pursue your dreams:
Blogs are forever (as long as the domain and hosting sites are paid)
Having a repository of our content minus worries of the platform being shut down against our will is my number one reason of choosing blogging over any other social media platform. It’s reassuring to know that you have full control of your content and have no guidelines to follow (e.g. text limit, photo compression, censored topics, possibility of content getting taken down without our consent).
Blogging isn’t free if you want your own domain, though. For starters, you can start by availing free services from WordPress or Blogspot and switch to a personalized version once you have the budget to do so. Domain and hosting fees need to be paid annually but you can pay in advance to ensure that your website survives long-term. In fact, the oldest website to ever exist went live in 1991 and it’s still accessible.
You can explain your topic in detail
Using short-form content, especially one-minute clips, may lead to misinterpretation as there are topics that cannot be fully explained nor grasped in a few minutes. Whereas blogs have all the space for lengthy explanations backed with links to credible sources that readers can visit for further reading.
Just take this list of top five blog posts of John Innes Centre in the UK about plants as an example. The questions may seem so simple and are answerable by a grade school student’s science book but people now turn to blogs for easy-to-understand explanations or narrations of real-life experiences.
You can observe changes in your writing style throughout the years
When I started my blog, I only planned to use it as a repository of things I’ve tried, nostalgic moments, movies I’ve seen, and trending topics that I’m interested in. I used to work 6 days a week as an online news and lifestyle content writer for one of the top publications in the Philippines so leaving my job left my brain continuously buzzing for ideas. I knew that I needed an outlet to slowly help my brain calm down so I accepted one of my seniors’ offer to help me kickstart a personal blog. My posts from 2016 were very much like how I wrote pieces for my former employer and I’m happy that I was able to shift to a more personal take on things throughout the years. The words I used way back 2016 reflect how I speak, too! Blogs can serve as a portal for us to get a detailed look at how we think and write during a specific year.
Search engines prioritize website content over in-app short videos
In terms of discoverability on search engines, websites are king. We have SEO, whereas social media platforms have hashtags. Instagram Reels and TikTok videos don’t usually appear when you’re on search engines like Google where YouTube videos and links to websites are prioritized.
Blogs go hand-in-hand with social media platforms
While short-form contents remain to be more engaging nowadays, it’s important to keep up with the times and utilize both in order to fully inform people about the topic you want to discuss. A mesmerizing ASMR video can include a link to a blog post about the science behind ASMR or a sound bite from a celebrity that you interviewed can have a follow-through link to an article about the full interview. The possibilities (and creativity) are endless! You can also check out fashion blogger-turned-actress Urszula Makowska for insights on how she leveraged on multiple platforms to reach a wider audience and be successful at her craft.
If you’re looking for a sign on when to start blogging, this is it! Find your voice, find your niche, and just go for it. 😊