You don't need to have a blog, but as I was just saying, you need to figure out a way to make this stuff work for brands. If we look at our highest performing influencers from a sales perspective, how much do they sell for a brand, I would say 98% of the people in the top are bloggers. They're people that are still publishing to their blog every day. That is universally true. There has been, in the last few years, a shift away from bloggers. It feels old school, it's not as exciting. It's not as visual, it's not as fun. It's not trendy. That pendulum is swinging back. I can say internally, we are doing more and more campaigns where we are trying to engage bloggers, people that are still publishing the blog, as well as Instagram, in our campaigns because they are multitudes more effective, like 10, 50, 100 X more effective.
If you have 100,000 Instagram followers, and someone else has 100,000 Instagram followers, and a healthy blog traffic, and they can drive 10, 20, 50 times the traffic and sales that you can, you'll never compete. There's influencers that are more like cool girls, like better just, or they're content creators, they create beautiful content. That's a different thing. If that's your thing, do you need a blog? No. Do I think that you should have one? Yes, but you need to figure out a way to try and make this more effective for your brand partners. If not a blog, maybe it's a newsletter, maybe it's a different way to use stories, maybe it's a YouTube channel. Instagram traditionally has not been great at driving sales and conversions. I think that as the industry starts to reevaluate its expectations, and starts to get more aggressive with trying to pull ROI out of the space, you need to think of what you're going to be doing outside of Instagram.
The other thing is, is you can't totally trust any platform. You can't trust Instagram, you can't trust the TikTok, you can't trust Twitter. Having a blog, having a newsletter, having something that you own is really important. If you have 200,000 Instagram followers, and you can get 1,000 of them a day to come to a blog, that's valuable. If next year that goes to 5,000, and then the next year to 10,000, well then you start to create a space that is all yours. Nobody can change the rules of that space, because you own it.
We talk about Grace Atwood and Jess Kirby, who are friends of mine, a lot on the show. It's because this blog thing, the question about blogs is in my mind. I was just hiking Runyon in LA, which is one of the terrible cliche, with Grace Atwood. [coughs] Excuse me. I told her, when I met her two years ago, I was on Drink with James saying blogs will be dead in five years. I think that their time is over. Blogs are dead. This is not going to be a thing. I think I was wrong, and my mind has changed, and I think more and more it is important for influencers to be creating a space that they own, that they can take with them that is platform agnostic. As you go into the new year, think about that. Again, it doesn't have to be a blog. It can be a newsletter, it can be YouTube, although that's another platform subject to its own rules, but at least you're diversifying. It can be a monthly zine that you print that people subscribe to. Something, do something that you can own that other people don't control.
- Reflections on the decade, blogging and politics with @thereclaimed