Post by BlogPaws CEO Yvonne DiVita
I felt the sigh that went with that post. It was a recent post I read, not from a pet blogger, but I’ll bet pet bloggers have the same frustrations. We pour our all into our blogs, whether on a daily basis or just once a week. We add pictures and videos and make sure our links are no-follow if we’re doing a campaign and we give our lives to our blogs – for what? For a few minutes of fame, or a comment or two? Is that enough?
In the early days of blogging, back in 2004, we “newbies” were gung ho. We felt like we discovered this new method of reaching people, a new way to share relevant, useful information; a way to communicate that didn’t require travel or face-to-face visits. It was phenomenal! It allowed us to meet new friends, make connections and find opportunities. At that time, none of us expected to make money from our blogs. We expected to make money by following the connections, speaking and gaining recognition as experts in our industry.
And it worked. I met people I would never have known about otherwise. I was asked to speak at conferences around the country. I honed my writing and my message, ever realizing the importance of search engine optimization, authenticity and journalistic excellence. I built my publishing business from the ground up, using blogs.
Oh the value of the tiny blogosphere back in ’05, ‘06, ‘07. Oh the heady atmosphere of being a first-mover in a new technology. Oh yeah.
And then, it started to get old.
I saw many of my new friends writing, “I’m taking a break from blogging. I’m concentrating on my business this year. It’s just too hard. I’ll revisit again next year, maybe.”
Holy blog burnout! At first, I was shocked. How could anyone give up this dynamic tool? How could anyone STOP blogging? I couldn’t understand it – I was enjoying it tremendously, and the folks who were claiming burnout were some of my BFFs, the best bloggers out there. The smartest and most talented bloggers out there. I was mystified by their decision to drop their blog.
“Why?” I wrote anxiously to one friend. “Why are you giving up your blog?” Yes, she had “explained” on her blog. She had said she was “moving on.” She had said the blog was claiming too much of her time and not returning the results she wanted. She basically said she was so burned out, something had to give, and it was the blog.
“I will probably return to the blog next year,” she wrote to me. “I just need some time away from the blog to do other things, right now. It’s served me well, that’s true, but it requires so much time and effort, I have to move on this year.”
“So much time and effort,” I thought. Yes, blogs are a lot of time and effort. I posted daily in my blog. I visited other blogs and left comments, daily. I reached out to people who commented on my posts to invite them to share more thoughts with me. Indeed, the blog commanded a major part of my day.
For me, it was worth it. For me, it returned high results. For me, the burnout never happened.
Yet, I could understand why others were pulling back. I could understand that their experience wasn’t the same as mine. I graciously gave them their space and watched for their return. When they did return, by the way, it was often with a new blog, a new focus, a new beginning.
Are you suffering from blog burnout? Is your blog beginning to be more of a chore than a delight? Are you reaching milestones and accomplishing goals or are you frustrated and annoyed? Is social media in general beginning to be…more work than pleasure?
It’s okay to step back. It’s okay to take a break. It’s okay to re-evaluate.
Just don’t lose touch. A blog is designed to serve you, not the other way around. I encourage anyone feeling burnout to re-evaluate, revisit, rethink the reasons you blog and the results you hope to achieve. I don’t believe, as some do, that there are too many blogs. I know it’s often hard to find the best blogs. We, at BlogPaws, are always on the lookout for good blogs. In our search, we uncover some amazing blogs… that have nothing to do with pets. We uncover blogs that share personal messages that resonate with us…but might not resonate with you. We discover talent that lies hidden behind blogs and content that isn’t so good, that is getting a lot of attention for… silly content, outrageous content… and really bad writing.
Each time I, personally, learn of a new blog I didn’t know about, shared by a friend or relative, I get pretty excited. New blogs are like new books. And therein lays the reason I have never experienced burnout, I think. Books and blogs, writing, communicating, sharing, is at the core of my passion for being. When someone I love gives in to burnout, I try to understand, but a little part of me goes with them. As if… I have failed to let them know how important they are to me.
Maybe, as the person in the beginning of this post said, the blogosphere isn’t “worth” it anymore. She said it was teeming with ordinariness… yes, I’m paraphrasing her comments… she said her blog was a tiny voice in a loud auditorium, and no one was listening, so why continue?
I would ask her – if one person is listening; if you’re making a difference to one person…is that worth it? It is to me.