This blog post is not like the rest of them, as you can probably tell from the title. I had a few things on my mind and wanted to share my thoughts with you.
I’ve been blogging for about a while now and have noticed a few things about the blogging world I’m not too proud of. I don’t know whether it’s complacency or me purposely exposing myself to the same topics and concepts…I just know that something isn’t right.
The Problems with Bloggers
We’re starting to become like every other (insert niche) blogger.
After all the blogs I’ve been reading, there really isn’t one that calls to me as an individual person with a life and personality. I can’t even tell you a name of a blog website because I can’t associate one with a personality and a face—except for maybe Melyssa Griffin since she is everywhere with Pinterest.
I feel that we are so close-knit in our blogger groups on Facebook that we forget to have our own distinctive voice. We kinda have read the writings of so many bloggers that we unconsciously fit our style into their own, leading to monotony.
The style, the tang, the “what makes you different from any other health/marketing/business consultant blogger”—it’s missing!
We’re losing our creativity
For real though.
I’m a half-time college blogger and it all seems like we’re regurgitating the same organization/productivity tips: buy an agenda, use the Pomodoro method, etc etc.
As a matter of fact, we’re regurgitating the SAME topics.
- How to be productive
- How to take notes
- How to get organized
And yes, these are for SURE great starter posts to incorporate as a beginning blogger. Heck, I believe I have some of these very same articles.
But I try to add something new to the table. Not just the same tips and suggestions that everyone else has.
And I know there’s more to college than the actual taking notes parts. There’s a mental aspect of it too! I have a post entitled “What to Do When Teachers Waste Your Time” and I have never seen ANY blog post like it.
Why, though? Too many college professors have too much fun with their jobs and inadvertently waste our time sometimes.
And it’s not just college bloggers.
I’ve signed up for a few free webinars to help me with my business. At the end, I noticed that the webinar hoster will pitch a certain product, and that’s when I leave the scene.
For one, I’m broke as a mofo, but for two, I DON’T KNOW WHO TO BUY FROM.
Yeah, Melyssa’s Pinfinite Growth seems cool, but that stuff is expensive.
And there are sooo many Pinterest webinars to choose from—who is to say that these webinars won’t cover the exact same information with the only difference being the prices?
But my main question is, how did these people discover these tips? After all, there’s not THAT much you can do with Pinterest. Isn’t it all just trial and error? With the SURFEIT of Pinterest tips and tricks out there online, what is it that I actually don’t already know/ won’t get from an online blog?
I’m intrigued in buying a webinar just to see if I learn something completely new. If I was given a total refund the day after the webinar, of course.
I’d just be distraught if I paid for a Pinterest course and the first 10 minutes talked about designing the pin: 735 x 11500 or whatever, bright colors, consistency, etc.
We’re very sell-y.
One of my favorite bloggers who really made a difference in my life was Jorden Roper.
She taught me how to snag my first client on Linkedin.
She taught me how to send a cold email.
She taught me the basics of freelance writing.
And she answered all my questions.
She didn’t offer any “Get 5000 in 5 days” type of un-free course. And she had a loot of personality. I mean she swore a lot, but even if she didn’t, I associated a face and a writing style to her blog name—Writingrevolt.com
In fact, I’d go back to her websites taking notes, signing up for things. And my email wouldn’t even be bombarded with other things she recommends I download or buy.
I understand that selling accounts for a great fraction of our incomes. But I liked Jorden because she helped me make money without spending money.
I don’t even KNOW if she has anything for sale. She gives away so much free and useful information.
And she has her own freelance writing comics! WHO does that?!
She’s the bomb.
She doesn’t feel beyond me. She feels like an older sister that I can talk to whenever I have a question or need help or just need a laugh. I can ask for money and she’ll never ask for it back.
Anyways, I didn’t mean any harm when composing this. I just recognized a few themes that should be addressed in the beauty that is the blogging world.
Do you agree? What are your thoughts?
haha yes yes and yes.
The amount of bloggers trying to SELL blogging, is gross.
I hate the industry.
It’s getting pretty bad, you’re right. Luckily there is always time for change. Thanks for stopping by!
Came across your post on Facebook and I just had to comment :p
Yes! Finally someone said it, and you said it so well 😀 Thank you! I agree 100%. It’s all the same, same, same, everywhere. I don’t know how it got that way, but I guess it’s a byproduct of “everyone” blogging to get rich these days and not just for the love of writing and being creative. I’m a fashion blogger and I catch myself writing those dull “how to be more productive articles” from time to time. What I really like is to write personal stuff, but nobody reads that. It’s all about “value” (aka how to…) these days (even though I’m not trying to get rich I would still like someone to read my stuff). Unfortunately I feel it’s al just the same stuff…in the same wrapping even. I’m like you also wondering what the “magic sauce” everyone’s selling is that differs so much from the free stuff. I’m starting to believe that there is no magic, just hard work, trial and error, patience and a solid dose of good old luck (which seems to be a forgotten term lately).
Hey friend, thanks for stopping by. I wish the personal stuff was more popular, though. I’d love to just talk about my day with people and have people comment on what’s going on with their lives. Unfortunately blogging is a business for most people, and all the “creative stuff” isn’t free, but the regurgitated stuff you can find everywhere is.
I love this. I’m brand new to the blogging game and honestly, I’ve been hearing the same stuff over and over and over again. I’ve learned a lot, but I’d love a new spin. Be unique. Be yourself. Break the mold. Maybe it will work. LOL. Thanks.
It most definitely will work! Once people start moving the soot out of their eyes and ears and look at how monotonous we’re making our careers. Thanks for reading!
Great post, I agree so much. I once had question about a blogger in a blog group on Facebook about how a blogging expert becomes an expert. And I was bullied pretty bad, on said post and on my blog. I was only trying to say that I think there should be a standard to be met to be an expert in blogging and marketing but I guess anyone can be an expert these days because they copied someone else’s work. Thanks again for saying it!!
It’s a good question and I’ve asked people too. Like, what were you doing BEFORE you became an expert? How did you become an expert in blogging and marketing? Trial and error like everyone else? Thanks for reading!
I saw a blog once from a woman who was a scientist for a living but decided to become a “life coach”. Those are the ones that make me really nervous because I’m pretty certain in the US anyone can call themselves a coach without proving credentials.
And this one blog post I read was pretty much bullying readers…Telling them there’s absolutely NO reason to not follow your dreams because everything was an “excuse”.
I was gobsmacked.
The problem with a blog like this is that SHE may thinks she’s addressing a narrow niche, say middle-class women aged 19-35 whose only issue may be needing a confidence kick up the wazoo, but that doesn’t mean that a person outside that niche won’t read it and take it to heart even if she’s older or broke or has family responsibilities or health problems that are legitimate barriers to following her dreams. I just feel that it’s really irresponsible to blog like this if you’re going to call yourself an “expert”.
It’s one of the reasons I love America. You have the freedom to pursue whatever you want. But it shouldn’t be taken so lightly since, you’re right. Some people will get the wrong message if your career is to coach people on their life.
You can pursue whatever you want in most other so-called “western” countries. America seems to be unique in not seeing the need to prove ones qualifications though.
I find the one major problem with bloggers is that some of them hit a level of success and then become insufferable mega-egos.
Yup. Once you’ve sold something, you capitalize on your knowledge. Which isn’t bad, but execution is everything. Thanks for stopping by!
We are having this problem ,because everyone is duplicating themselves, rather than share strategies and encourage people to put their spin on it , a lot of bloggers use their cookie cut formulas as their selling point. we need to g back to where everything is not sold and what is sold, is created in a way that it helps people take action and not acquire swipe files of formulas and blueprints. I was creating a course recently based on a course creating product i bought ,but it did not feel authentic. As much as there are great lessons in what she is sharing , i am taking what works for me and putting my spin on it to create what i call the experience ,so that whatever and however you choose to run with it , it will work for you. Thanks for the post Blossom.
No problem, and I completely agee. Buy, buy, buy, sell, sell, sell. And the free stuff barely adds value! I know we can fix this though. We can be different, and I’m glad you’re making a change to do that!
I love this post! I think it’s totally unfair to expect people to pay a ridiculous amount of money for something that could be explained for free, especially when 284647 are selling stuff about the same topic. Ugh. I actually recently wrote a post about Pinterest tips – every strategy that I used to grow my Pinterest following from like 20 followers to over 2,000 followers in a month. See, I didn’t even consider turning those tips into an expensive course because you’re right – it’s just what worked for me and I’m hoping it’ll help other people, but it might not. (No hate toward Melyssa Griffin – she’s awesome!) But thank you for posting this, haha. 🙂
Thanks for stopping by, Tami! And yeah, I totally agree. Everyone’s selling the same stuff! I’d love to read about your pinterest strategy though. And I’m sure if you took one of those Pinterest courses, you’d get ripped off!
The bloggers who make the most money are selling their own products, not other people’s products. And many of them are like car dealers, in your face with ads. And what drives me crazy is the 2,000 newsletters I get from all of them each day in my inbox. Who knows what the future will hold. Sometimes I enjoy spam, gives me something entertaining to read, like tabloids. And so, who is to say that sales people are evil, and that ads are a bad thing. I’ve bought many things thanks to ads. Anyhow, if anybody is looking for a product that lets you keep 50% of the profit from its sales and is the most in demand product in the world, then take a look here, and give me feedback, thanks.
I thank you for your honesty, Blossom. 🙂 I actually did pay money for a course and I am learning a lot…unfortunately one of those things being that I really don’t have a niche that will make me truckloads of money. The blogger-teacher tries to convince us that one needn’t be an expert to provide paid courses and that we all have something to sell, but I think it’s resulting in too many samey-samey bloggers offering the same kind of courses.
And I’m noticing that a lot of big name bloggers are rethinking their business lately! Has the whole blogosphere “jumped the shark”? I do think it may be over saturated.
I’ve pretty much left all blogging groups and unsubscribed from most of their newsletters. All the free info is getting repetitive and I can’t afford to spend more money I don’t have to find out that I can’t do what they do.
I’d rather follow my craft blogs and learn something I can really use regardless of my age, geographic location, or bank account balance… 🙂
Hey there, and thanks for stopping by. Yeah, it’s pretty much all the same thing sometimes. I respect their hustle and grind, but I wish it was not so cookie-cutter. Like there’s actually a format to webinars: shout out the people, talk about the subject, then pitch a product at the end. I don’t know how I feel about that.
You forgot the beginning part: Spend the first 10 minutes with technical problems and repeating, “Can you hear me now? Can you hear me now?” followed by saying “Hi! Hi! How nice of you to come!” as she reads through the gazillion chat posts announcing that they’re here and living in another country and it’s actually 3 in the morning but they stayed up just for her…” LOL
Oh no!! That does happen, doesn’t it? We need to reinvent that wheel!
If one day copy and paste feature did not exist, at least half of the blogs would be run out of the business.
Plagiarism is the root of all creative evil!
Totally agree that courses are becoming expensive and seem to all be teaching the same thing. You can muddle through on your own with setting up your (insert what the course teaches here) but they are preying on the fact that most people want an instant result.
I, like yourself, would struggle to invest in some of the courses that actually appeal to me. Even though I know the course creator is great at what they do, saying a $2 – 3k course is affordable is a joke to me. If only they would actually make the courses affordable in the real world I would be more inclined to learn from them.
Yeah, I just can’t spend 2k on on a course right now as a college student. But I know people who don’t have the time to look for the information will!
These are great thoughts! I honestly found myself reading the same thing over and over again from different sites. You’re right about the webinars–they are so pricey! I just hope it can be more affordable. xx
Definitely! Thanks for stopping by, Kandja
I love this post because it’s something hat I as talking to my boyfriend about just an hour earlier.
I have been blogging on and off from the time I was 16/17. I’m 21 now. I’ve only recently taken blogging more serious as of this year. And the one thing I hate hear as a tip was “have a niche”. It drives me insane. Ive been trying, based on what comes to me naturally. I even wrote a productivity post this week. But I tried to visualize the things I’ve one, the things that didn’t for me and how to improve on it if possible.
Still I told my bf, is he’s kinds of topics the things I want to blog about or did I somehow convinced myself that that’s the case.
And most definitely they are very salesy. When I first got back into the groove, I signed up for so many webinars on small businesses, social media; etc. The reason why I signed up for so many is because everyone was telling me the same thing and yet I was supposed to put my trust (and money) in them? nah…
One woman’s webinars that I watched had one of her courses offered for free (as part of another blogger’s promotion) months down the line and when I went through it, I was disappointed. It was nothing different from the actual webinars.
I have never paid for a course as they’re too expensive. I’m a recent graduate and on top of that I live outside of America. The exchange rate is not in my favor. I would have to pay double the price when converted to my currency. From the niche to the webinars, the goal at the end of the day is all about the $ for some bloggers.
For me I think my core reason for being a blogger hasn’t changed. I just want to share some of my knowledge and experiences with other. But I want to do it in a way that’s not monotonous and boring.
If I read one more productivity post, I’m going to vomit lol. But you sound like a genuine and cool blogger. Use that to your advantage when you right! Checking you out right now 🙂
Great tips! Adding creativity to anything we do are very important to success.
It is a big problem now with been the same. Apart from not being able to create something unique, there are also people who just copy your ideas and content. I think it is tough times, but to be honest, I think there is still room for everyone in this word.
I too, am noticing this, and I’m new to blogging. I feel like every blogger is teaching every other blogger to blog, you know? It’s like that in the business groups I’m in too – everyone’s a coach teaching other people to coach. I love when I see original, thoughtful blog posts. Thanks for being honest and sharing this.
Oh man! You nailed it.
I am right there with you and I do happen to be one of those bloggers that teach people how to do things. Difference is I’ve been building websites for coming up on 8 years now and I really got sick of seeing the same thing over and over as well so I said screw it. I’m going to start my own blog and show people how to do it right and that it isn’t going to happen overnight, because “the only place that success comes before work is in the dictionary” Vidal Sasoon
I really can’t see how most of these people can sell a strategy that worked for them knowing that it might not work for others. Possibly they truly believe in it that much and are too close to it to realize it’s flaws. Maybe their moral compass is screwed. Maybe they don’t care. Maybe their convinced it could work for everyone.
Another thing to consider is with all these posts on Income Reports How I Made XXXXX this month on blah blah blogging. Seems to be showing most people the only way to make serious money blogging is to teach other people how to do it and that simply isn’t true, once again you got to find what works for you.
There is absolutely no reason why we would have a shortage of people that can teach you how to do things. I mean obviously they put in the time to find something that worked for them and wanted to share it to save you the time of the journey they had in trial and error. That considered ‘time’ is the biggest thing sold online. Most tools, courses and strategies are meant to save you the time, the good ones atleast because what’s more important than that? But if a person can manage to only put out cookie cutter stuff without making it unique or just showing the same things everyone else is sharing how the hell do they sleep at night. Maybe everyone is just trying to capture the total beginner. Maybe their just new to teaching. Maybe they haven’t learned how to be more thorough.
Now the other hand is atleast I can say I’m proud of them for putting themselves out there. It takes alot of confidence to put your name out there and stand by your word and for alot of these people I suspect they are in the process of learning how to teach as well. That is another skill that has to honed and learned through trial an error. You can’t expect to grab a mic for the first time and sound like Adele. Yes, of course there are those people that have a natural knack for things but that talent start out raw. It has to be sanded and polished and the only way to do that is to throw you and work into the grinder. Those that survive and don’t give up will truly have something amazing to share and they won’t have to tell us about it anymore because “When you are good at something you tell other people, but when you are great at something other people tell you.”
I just keep rattling off thoughts as I think them, this might be a little incoherent but it’s just how my mind is traveling on the subject =)
I’m not saying that we should give them a break, we’re obviously going to keep on doing what we’re doing and that will allow them learn that what their offering just isn’t cutting it and most of them will adapt and up their game. Find their unique voice and be true to themselves which is the only kind of person we can actually learn to adore, follow and let influence us. Because seeing another Hi, I’m Kate and I do exactly what Jacky does but I have brown hair and wear white blouses.. well thankfully I can just keep scrolling on past that until she learns how to catch my attention for real and any guy for that matter. (I’ve been on Pinterest alot lately!)
Nonetheless this I am sure. We all have our hard battles to fight and we all have our flaws. The ones that we notice, we can see are truly stitched together with good intentions.
Ah! Thanks so much for this beautiful conversation 🙂 Please, feel free to let it all out because you made excellent posts.
Yeah putting yourself out there is something people cant do at all (I’m still learning) so I’m glad they’re great at marketing. But it gets old after a while. I’m glad this post was able to resonate with you as strongly as it did. So sorry for the late response!
I feel most bloggers are in a hurry to be the next big one,and to be that next big one,we feel it counts how many sales we make.
Bloggers are under pressure,a new blogger who read somewhere it`s easy to make money blogging is already asking why they are not making sales with thier 5 posts. I have over 70 posts on my site, l did not start to make sales till l has about 30 posts.
I feel bloggers need to relax a bit and just enjoy doing what they do. Sales or not, l was so proud of having my own website that l did not think about making money and l think that made all the difference.
Hit it with the nail! I’ve accidentally fallen into that trap of not doing what it is that I want to do, but now I’m getting back on my feet. Glad you stuck so true to your personal brand and didn’t sell out!
There are so many posts out there that are similar in nature. I write about travel, and wind up seeing hundreds of posts like “10 Reasons to Visit (Insert City Here)” or “How I Saved to Travel the World.” It gets old REAL quick, ha. I look for bloggers who let their personality shine through…it’s why I prefer journal style posts with the occasional “how to” guide thrown in.
I’m actually trying to get into the journalistic style myself. It’s because people always say that How To posts are the best and convert better. But it’s slowly turning us into copycats.