Hi guys and gals, I have completed my research and come up with the 9 reasons why we blog. I challenge you to come up with a reason that can’t be reduced to any one of these! I think it’s important to remind ourselves why we started in the first place so that we continue on. And if we’re not sure why we started, being able to bring that reason to our conscious level of thinking, can be really self-affirming.
We can distil these reasons even further by saying that they are based upon the human desire of fulfilment. It is all to some extent, a search for meaning; what is it we bring to this world.
So here it is, my top 9 (no, there’s not 10!) reasons why we blog.
9. A way to express ourselves
Every person is unique, and we express this in equally unique ways. Blogging is obviously a means to express our uniqueness, and hence why the blogosphere is filled with such variety. From popular topics like social psychology, men’s lifestyle or women’s fashion to slightly niche topics like baby animals, brand packaging, Garfield humour and Lego creations; they all declare in some way, “this is who I am.” Expressing ourselves is also expressing our passions, which links into my next reason…
8. To share our experiences
We are social creatures and so we innately want to share our experiences, and often helping people is a primary driver of this. Many blogs are based upon helping people through traumatic experiences that the blogger has suffered themselves. This blog for those dealing with ADHD and depression, is a prime example of that.
7. To express our creativity
I think it’s very much part of human nature to have a desire to create. The right side of the brain wants to express it’s colourful, whacky and random way of thinking. Even in areas where you might not normally associate creativity, successful blogs exist on coding, financial advice and neuroscience which show creative solutions are needed for even the most left brain of topics.
Creativity is also tied to just simply having fun, trying new things, experimenting, and that’s what blogging can be.
6. It’s a form of catharsis
I wrote a few posts on the topic of musings, and I for one can declare that blogging and writing in general can have a cathartic, an almost therapeutic effect. Being able to process your thoughts and externalise your emotions, affords you a clarity of thought. It also allows you to achieve a more objective view of yourself, which can stop you from being trapped in a world of negative thoughts. Something I’ve talked about here.
5. Influence and persuade on specific topics
As part of being passionate about a certain topic, people will inevitably want to convince you of their views or opinions. I think that generally comes from a good place, where people are compelled to share their view because of their experience, or their beliefs in what is good or right.
Part of this is a human desire to contribute to something beyond one’s self. The feeling of significance can be a great motivator in wanting to make a difference to either loved ones, or to the greater community.
4. Promotion, branding or marketing
Blogs are a great marketing tool to show that you are an authority on a topic. It legitimises your expertise by simply demonstrating your knowledge on a topic, and it therefore builds credibility in the eyes of the reader.
Blogging also creates brand perception in the target audience. You choose what content to publish and how that is presented, therefore curating an image of who you are and what you’re about. Take this lifestyle blog, the colour palate, the personality in the writing, the photography, even the font, is all cohesive, and appealing to the target market: young, hip 20-something females either living or wanting to live in a city.
Promotion and branding is also about spreading awareness on topics for either non-profit or commercial purposes, which is a great lil segue (if I do say so myself), to the next reason.
3. Making money
Blogs can be a real money spinner. Through advertising, book deals, online products or services, or even affiliate marketing, riches can be made. Sites that started off as blogs like SlashGear, Lifehacker, Mashable are earning upwards of $60k a month!
2. Connecting to other people
Another innate human desire is connection. Socialising, communicating, sharing common interests, are things we do in day-to-day life with work colleagues, family and friends, but doing it online has added benefits. There’s so much greater reach in who you can talk to, and so you can connect to like minded people to share your quirky likes for sausage dog photos, or have a rant over political views; these things you might not be able to do so easily with immediate social connections.
And so, that brings us to THE number 1 reason why we blog….ok, it might be MY number 1 reason but it’s…
1. Fulfil our human desire to grow and learn
We all do want to grow and learn; some people may consciously know this, some may not! Blogging helps us to improve our writing, it makes us more confident in expressing our opinions and views, and it creates discipline by creating a habit of writing. The process of blogging helps us grow because we learn about our capacity to learn, we can acquire a deeper appreciation of how we think and what we feel, and we learn to connect to our audience by appealing to what they want to read.
Well there’s the top reasons as to why we blog.
Do you agree with these reasons? Have I missed some out? Do you think there should be a different number 1? Go on, comment below!
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