Happy New Year!
Have you made any resolutions? Perhaps this is the year that you will start a blog, or get published? For many writers there are big, audacious goals in the air for 2013.
But what drives bloggers to blog? Why do you blog?
Is it sheer egoism as George Orwell suggests in his not-so-famous short-form essay, ‘Why I write’ (public library) or are there other reasons for writing and posting a blog?
In this article I examine 4 possible motives for blogging. Where do you see yourself?
#1. To influence
These days there are blogs for every industry and category. And in some ways, bloggers in these niches have become more influential than the media. Think about it – because audiences are segmented by special interests, culture and life circumstances bloggers are able to target and influence specific groups by giving them content that resonates with them in a powerful way.
According to data provided by BlogHer 81% of women who use social media trust blogs so much, that 61% bought an item recommended in a blog.
Image source: Jumpthru
#2. To be known and talked about
A good number of people prefer the quite, obscure life mentioned in Scripture, “Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands” (1 Thess 4: 11-12). Unfortunately most bloggers do not fall in that category (except the working with your hands bit).
For many bloggers and content writers there is a slight (or severe) strain of vanity that makes us want to be known, admired, talked about, followed, re-tweeted, invited and so on! Even when we say that our content helps to solve other people’s problems, the fact is we badly want to be regarded as ‘the problem solver’ in that scenario. If you’re a serious blogger examine yourself and see if it ain’t so.
#3. Sheer enthusiasm
Some bloggers do it out of sheer enthusiasm. They are highly motivated to tell their stories and share their experiences, which they feel are too valuable to be missed. Because of their passion these bloggers are likely to provide quality content simply because they enjoy what they do. They’re not stressed out about what to write – and it shows in their content. Their blogs tend to promote a more natural conversation, which invites many readers to converse and engage.
What’s nice about this group is they’re not typically driven by money or ambition (even though money tends to follow those who enjoy what they do!). Sharing their stories is for them a way of spreading enthusiasm about the things they love.
#4. To tell it like it is
Reporters must wait until every source is confirmed, and novelists might spend months or years before publishing a book. But there are bloggers who just tell it like it is, as it happens – now! Their motivation is to express personal thoughts about public, and real life situations that are unfolding at the moment. They don’t have time to gather their thoughts and wait for clear patterns to emerge in a story. Their words flow more freely, have less formality, more mistakes and yet ironically more life.
Bloggers who ‘tell it like it is’ are brave because they are most vulnerable to public criticism and brutal feedback. But what’s great about this group of bloggers is their willingness to embrace the hazard that comes with honest and forthright blogging. Better that than to operate in a safe sanctuary where bold perspectives are muzzled.
Over to you? What are your motives for blogging or starting a blog? Do you see yourself in any of these categories?