Go ahead, call me an OG (original) blogger – as ancient as a Singer sewing machine but still running perfectly. After 17 years, am still alive and kicking – perhaps, a bit more jaded but definitely lucky to have witnessed the different transformations that my blogging journey has taken me through the years.
These days, it’s all about influencers and video in whatever form. My kids – who were barely in school when I first blogged in 2004 – are now in college and dancing on TikTok! What a lengthy span of time that is. A lot of people say that blogging is dead but you know what? It’s not. It still gives me a good source of residual income. Not a month goes by that people email me for paid links, sponsorships and freebies. It may not be a lot but it’s still good enough to make me afford my daily dose of coffee. Or do online shopping.
It feels funny when I think about it : my blog is older than my youngest child, who is 11 years old. It’s safe to say that my blog is my baby…who was not a person, haha. The dedication and commitment I gave to my blog in the early years was certainly akin to the effort in raising a child. Back then, I worked full-time in the corporate world but even while groggy after a graveyard shift, I made sure I slaved away writing a blog post two or three times a week.
Commitment and passion are the secrets to staying long in this craft. Maybe about 90% of those who were blogging in 2004 are no longer doing it now. There are many reasons for stopping and these are all valid – you move on, have kids, migrate, change your life circumstances, etc.
Back in the early years, we were not motivated by giveaways and events. It was the sheer desire to document facets of our daily life, sentiments, share recipes from the kitchen, write about hobbies and other stuff.
But even so, I loved the act of connecting with like-minded people in the blogosphere. It was nice to know those outside of my work circle, and some of these OG bloggers are still my friends up to now.
Around 2008, bloggers started to get tapped for marketing-related activities. We got invited to presscons, product launches and out-of-town trips. I worked as a journalist prior so this was nothing new to me. But it was pretty evident that the traditional media we knew was headed towards a great digital shift. It was just a matter of time.
A lot of people joined the bandwagon because of the ïncentives of being a blogger. From being a personal diary, our old craft shifted to becoming a commercial endeavor and the PR companies started contacting us. For OG bloggers, it was a case of take it or leave it. You either ride the wave or miss the boat.
I joined the bandwagon and attended events because I really couldn’t care less. As with any aspect of life, all things have to evolve. As blogs became more commercial, it was time for everyone to shine. I didn’t really go out of my way to out stage anyone and lay claim to being at the top of this whole new universe. My priority’s still raising my kids and attending to the needs of my household. Perhaps, things would have been different if I treated my blog more as a business venture. But no…. I continue to view it as my sacred property, my prized possession. If it earns some money, am happy. Am content to maintain it the way it is – as my online portfolio to the world.
Where do we go from here? I think that blogging will remain for the next 5 to 10 years for as long as there’s Google search. Entities requiring an online presence will continue to depend on us.There’s still money to be made from websites even though videos are getting to be the norm. Podcasts or any kind of medium that will cater to people’s short attention spans and increasingly mobile lifestyle will also catch market share.
Old school content creators like me certainly feel the added pressure of catching up to new technologies in order to be relevant to the times. But for parents with Gen Z kids, it’s easier for us to pass on the baton to our kids, lol. My blog may not be updated regularly now but it will still be there definitely. Until I retire or move on to other things. If you’re a follower and made it through the end of this post, thank you for joining me in my epic blogging journey 🙂