Lately, it seems like more and more people are interested in becoming a blogger and I don’t blame them. I mean, who doesn’t want a picture-perfect life, gifted PR packages, and free product that other people are spending money for? Who doesn’t want to get paid to post pretty pictures on Instagram and be considered #momgoals, #relationshipgoals, or #lifestylegoals? I’m sure you can sense the sarcasm dripping from my words.
I say all of that to say, while being a blogger may look pretty on the outside, what you see is just the tip of the iceberg. Many of our pictures actually come out like this one below and you don’t even know it. There is so much more to being a blogger than what meets the surface. Regardless of how pretty it looks, it’s still a job. Here are 5 things you should know about being a blogger.
1. A blogger is not only a blogger. No matter your niche, bloggers have to me multifaceted. Whether your niche is lifestyle, motherhood, food, beauty, travel, faith, or fashion- your job doesn’t start or end with writing a blog post. Someone has to design the home décor. Someone has to potty train. Someone has to cook the food. Someone has to do the makeup tutorial. Someone has to create the travel itinerary. Someone has to interpret the scripture. Someone has to style the wardrobe. You get my drift? It’s levels to this. To run a blog, you not only have to have knowledge in what you’re blogging about, but you also have to know the basics of running a blog. You have to have some knowledge on how to build a website (or pay someone else to do it). You have edit your blog, add or remove widgets/ plug ins, and handle the basic maintenance of your website. You are the photographer, the accountant, the creative director, and the admin. On top of it all, many bloggers, like myself, have another day job as their main source of income. So, repeat after me: a blogger is not only a blogger.
2. No one’s life is as perfect as their Instagram feed. There are a ton of influencers whose Instagram feeds can make someone question their entire existence. From the immaculate homes, to the fly wardrobe, to the luxury cars, to the picture-perfect families- it can be a lot to digest. Read this next sentence out loud. People show you what they want you to see. That perfect picture that got 100k likes more than likely took a dozen takes to get it right, and then a dozen more edits before it finally graced your IG feed. Most bloggers plan their social media feed in advance, using the same filter for every picture all for the purpose of it looking perfect. but that’s kind of the point. It’s Instagram, not real life. Don’t let social media fool you.
3. It’s more than taking pictures using #AD. In this world, the competition is high, and the stakes are even higher. There are a million food bloggers, beauty bloggers, travel bloggers, fashion bloggers, etc. Creating content that is essentially the same as everyone else’s, yet still catching people’s attention, can be hard. It is more than just taking pictures. It’s telling a story through those pictures. It’s making a connection. For me personally, I don’t have an on-call photographer. So, it’s either me as the photographer, or my boyfriend when I have to be in the picture. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made a delicious meal only for it to photograph horribly. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve written a blog post over and over and over again because the words just weren’t meshing together. I can’t tell you how many nights I’ve stayed up in the wee hours of the morning working on my content calendar, editing photos, or updating my website. Only for them to be posted and not perform as well as I expected because I missed the mark. Just taking pretty pictures may be easy, but being a blogger is not.
4. Not all bloggers are making the big bucks. I remember when I first started monetizing my blog about a year ago. I was dying to work with a company, any company…and trust me, they knew. So, they low balled me. One company offered me a whopping $15 to post on my Instagram that had about 5k followers at the time and very high engagement. Of course, I took the deal because I needed the experience. Over time, my pay gradually started to increase but it was a slow and steady process. I began to network with other bloggers and noticed they were getting some of the same collaborations that I was. I thought for sure they were being paid much more than I was, only to realize, they were getting paid the same or less. These are some of the same bloggers that had #AD on every other photo. Surely there are influencers/bloggers who are making hundreds of thousands to post on Instagram. But, there are even more who are getting paid pennies, if anything at all. The reality of it is, you don’t come out of the gate making hundreds of dollars to post on Instagram. You need to have a consistent feed, good content, and good engagement. Then the money will come. Which leads me to my next point.
5. We need engagement like a car needs gas. We thrive when you show interest in our content. I know you may stroll through Instagram and like a picture in your head, but liking a picture in your head doesn’t help, at all. An actual like on a picture is great. A comment on the picture is even better. Companies like to see that our followers actually enjoy our content before they collaborate with us. A blogger with no engagement is like a photographer without a camera, a Rockstar without a drum set, a quarterback without a football. We work hard to create content in hopes that our followers will engage, so if the content resonates with you, your engagement will go a long way.
I hope this gave you a little bit of insight into the life of a blogger if you’re considering starting this journey. I’ll leave you with a super cute picture of me that took me 12 shots to get right.
Xo, Consuella ♥