Blogging began in 1994 when, then college student, Justin Hall, first created what he called his personal homepage. But it wasn’t until 1999 that the term, blog was born and only in 2004 was it officially recognized as word of the year by the Meriam-Webster Dictionary.
Today, however, there are over 400 million blogs in the world and the number just keeps growing. Given this staggering statistic, you’re probably wondering, how, starting your own blog can really make a difference.
Here we list the reasons why you should blog and how it can benefit both your personal and professional life.
1. Creative Outlet
While blogs have been in existence for the past two decades, the reason for their use has shifted slightly. Some people blog to share their thoughts and opinions with the world, whilst others use them as an expose of their work and others to create an online presence.
The great thing about blogging is that whichever way you choose to use it – it’s okay! If you want to make a beauty blog and show people how to do makeup – go ahead! The world is your oyster, and your blog is your special space on the World Wide Web.
2. Deal with Social Distress Better
Having a blog as a creative outlet can also help in other ways. I’m sure someone along the line has told you to ‘write things down’, but blogging not only allows you to get your thoughts out but to also receive advice from complete strangers.
A 2015 study from the Journal of Psychological Research on Cyberspace showed that blogging can be a ‘powerful tool to cope with stressful situations.’ Apart from the proven therapeutic effects of writing, the act of sharing and receiving support also helps creators to better deal with their emotions. According to the report, ‘bloggers appreciate the open, non-stigmatizing and anonymous way that seems to be a core characteristic of the online experience.’
3. Grow Your Network
You’re essentially a ‘nobody’ without an online footprint, which is why blogging and having some form of social status is important. If you’re a business, you can reach a wider audience and gain new clients by sharing useful tips through a blog.
And, if you’re just an average Joe searching for your ideal position, a blog is a great way to showcase your personality, essentially setting you one step ahead of the other candidates.
4. Advertise Your Talents
Whilst you’re building your online footprint, you can also create an online portfolio showcasing your finest pieces; the work you are most proud of. Whether they’re photos of cookies you baked, people you’ve styled or websites you’ve written for – using your blog as a means to advertise what you can do is a great way to attract readers, build a following and even find potential employers or sponsors.
5. Share your Expert Knowledge
It might seem presumptuous to say that the world needs to hear your expert opinion, but you’re selling yourself short if you think it doesn’t. Today, people are constantly bombarded with new and complex information which they don’t understand and that’s where your blog comes in.
The beauty of the blogging world is that it doesn’t matter what you’re good at or passionate about. Whether it’s creating the perfect makeup look, making the best carrot cake or explaining technical jargon, your ability to simplify complicated ideas or terms will be of help to someone out there, believe it or not.
6. Establish Your Authority
A blog is a great way for any business to establish their authority, online and in the real world. It helps them create a company brand, share snippets of what staff members have been up to, and allows you to share industry knowledge and build some form of credibility.
Some of the biggest brands have blogs that are regularly updated and along with great interaction on social media, they have set themselves, one level above the rest. Take beauty blogger, Huda Kattan, for example, she managed to establish her authority as an entrepreneur and build a beauty empire from a single blog.
7. Become an Influencer
In the same way that companies use blogs to strengthen their credibility, bloggers also use their platforms to advance themselves in the community and even possibly, make a living by becoming a social influencer.
By its simplest definition, influencers refer to personalities who have the knowledge, authority and experience to affect purchasing decisions on a larger scale. The most popular and timeless example of this would be Oprah Winfrey, whose recommendations would always lead to sky-rocketing sales.
But these days, online influencers are just as powerful and are the most useful marketing tool. They are hired by big brands, to promote their products and become celebrities in their own right. Fitness Queen, Kayla Itsines is a great example, her online platform allows her to sell personal products and get paid to promote those of others.
8. Learn New Skills
We live in such a fast-paced world, where you need to constantly learn new skills and keep up with trends. If you stop for even a minute, you become old news, whilst a new tech genius swoops in and steals your position.
Blogging is a great way of staying updated and learning new skills, you’ll constantly be educating yourself on new marketing tricks, writing techniques, image creation and social media habits that will help you in every aspect of your life.
9. Earn Extra Income
There are many ways to earn money from your blog. But it all begins with three simple steps: determining your purpose, finding your niche market and creating a strong following. Once you’ve gone through these steps, brands are most likely to approach you for possible partnerships. They can do this by placing ads, creating sponsored posts, or through affiliate marketing.
Once you’ve accumulated a sizeable following and established your online presence with brands, your blog can also be an additional – or if you become really successful, maybe even your only source of income.
10. Gain New Experiences
There will also be times when, rather than getting paid, brands will treat bloggers to all-inclusive press trips instead. These trips are usually done out of the country and brands will normally take care of all the expenses including airfare, accommodations and sometimes, even daily allowances. While press trips don’t necessarily pay the bills, they’re certainly a once in a lifetime experience you shouldn’t turn down.
Blogs may have been an invention of the past, but if the last 20 years are any indication of how influential they’ve become, then blogs are definitely here to stay, and you should consider jumping on the bandwagon – immediately!
Do you already have a blog? Share tips on how you started through the comment section below.