I absolutely love blogging - I love the social media game, I love writing, I love photography, and I love the planning - though not necessarily in that order. I find myself becoming increasingly frustrated by how difficult it is to engage with people as a blogger who a, doesn't have a very specific niche, and b, isn't a beauty or lifestyle blogger. I know that there are a lot of bloggers who do things other than beauty and lifestyle and do it really well, but for a long time seeing them has been less of an inspiration to me and given me more of a feeling of 'that space is full'.
Last December I advertised with Dorkface. It was more than 6 months before that I signed up to advertise with her, and had I been making the decision when it came to my turn, I probably wouldn't be quite so quick to advertise.
I was a little apprehensive at the time, because advertising can be a bit controversial. I feel as though it gets a lot of bad press; it’s often considered to be a dishonest and money focussed ‘industry’, so to speak. So why did I do it? Let me just come out and say it - I wanted things to happen here in over thinker land. Wanting yourself to do well has suddenly become a very meaningful thing to say. I feel as though one half of the world think that wanting positive things for yourself is simply ‘being a girl boss’ and should be encouraged in every sense, while the other camp consider it egocentric or self obsessed - and I just want an in between. I don't value my success over anyone else's, but I work hard on this little creative space which I have complete control over, and I'd like for it to be successful - whatever that means to me on any given day (believe me, it changes).
Knowing a while before hand that I was going to be advertising in with someone who has 10000000000x the reach that I have, also put me in a position where I had so much motivation to get my blog into shape. There are things which I'm constantly wanting to change and which I would love to tweak - but I'm sure many bloggers would agree, you could spend all day every day tweaking designs and never writing anything.
Once I decided that advertising was something which I probably wanted to do, I chose Dorkface for a variety of reasons. It's a very different blog to mine - as I imagine Jemma is a very different person to me. Not so different though, that I think that her readers would get nothing from my blog - you wouldn't advertise bacon in a vegetarian magazine, right? There's no point trying to 'sell' something to a group of people who aren't interested, but there's also no point trying to 'sell' something to a group of people who already have that exact thing - so I felt as though this balance was exactly right. My hope was that my blog would reach people who it wouldn't normally reach, but people who would enjoy it nonetheless.
I tried to make the most out of the opportunity, Originally I was aiming to post almost every day. There was a plan in place like there had never been a plan in place before - but I was careful not to lose any authenticity. There were still plenty of off the cuff, 'this is how I feel and I need to tell the internet NOW' posts, as there always have been. I didn't see a huge increase in traffic and to be honest, right now, I'm not surprised.
I ignore adverts. I don't trust them, I don't trust that the people in them think what they're saying, and in the same way, I don't trust that the any blogger who promotes random people's blog posts on their blog actually really enjoys their content, or would be promoting them if they weren't paid. I don't click on those links, and I don't see why anyone else would either.
Now, I have two blogs. That makes things considerably more difficult, but I don't regret it even a little bit after the opportunities which have come from running Upper Circle. Currently, I don't advertise either of them anywhere and I don't offer advertising on upper circle. I have an advertising 'tab' here, but truthfully it's never been used and I am unsure whether it ever will be. If I was to offer advertising, I honestly think I'd filter people out. Why advertise something you don't fundamentally believe in? I'm not saying I'd have to agree with everything anyone said, but honestly if someone wanted to advertise with me and frequently fell victim to this list, I'd probably say no.
I have reached a point of utter confusion. Why is blogs advertising blogs even a thing any more, now everyone knows that it's happening and people aren't taking any notice of it? Does anyone genuinely see an increased readership from it?
What are your thoughts on advertising? Have you done it, and how successful was it? Let me know in the comments!