Yep, you read that right. This post is all about why your blog still matters. And (dare I say) why your blog matters more than Instagram. *collective gasp*
You see, I started blogging 4.5 years ago, before Instagram was really a thing. (At least it wasn’t much of a thing for influencers, at that time.) I focused a lot on my blog: SEO, alt text, Pinterest, you name it. Honestly, when Instagram came into the picture, I was a little taken off guard. By the time I realized what was happening, it took me years to catch up to girls that knew how to navigate IG well from that start. Although I feel like I am in a good place now with my number of Instagram followers (and see continual growth there now) I am convinced now, more than ever, to focus on my blog and let Instagram ride it’s own course, and here’s why.
You own your blog. Plain and simple. You are in control of your content, and how it is viewed. You are not at the mercy of ever changing algorithms, and having to wonder if your content is even being seen. You don’t have to pay for an ad for you followers to see your posts. The true followers will keep coming back, as they have before, because they love what you’re doing! (Huge shout out to the ones that have been following along. I see you and love you so much!) There is nothing about your blog that will change, unless you change it. That’s empowering! And a huge relief to consider, when you think about how much energy is spent on Instagram – a third-party platform we have no control over. Seriously guys, Instagram could completely change (or even end! Remember Myspace?) tomorrow, and all our efforts there would be in vein. Think about it.
Fake followers. There has been a lot of buzz about this lately, and for good reason. Seriously SO MANY bloggers are purchasing followers. It’s kind of unreal. The ones you would never think would even need to, are even buying them. I know there are varying opinions about this – one being, “if you can’t beat them, join them” and, conversely, there are many of us that are dedicated to authentic engagement — even if that means that some of our Instagram posts only hit 150 likes, when they used to hit 500+, before the algorithm change. I’m holding on to the old mantra of “slow and steady wins the race” and I really do think that it will pay off in the long run. Brands are becoming aware of influencers that are buying likes/followers (all you have to do is put in the handle on social blade to see if their growth is steady or if there are sudden spikes that indicate fowl play). Brands are even cracking down on influencers that are steering more likes to the brand’s page by way of comment and like pods, and cancelling their contracts. Fohr Card even took a stand yesterday, making it completely transparent to brands if the influencer’s followers are authentic. Even though there are many brands and companies that are starting to crack down on fake followers, there are still a lot of those bloggers that obtaining amazing opportunities. Even more reason for me to focus on the blog. The playing field is equal here.
The blog still matters to brands. Just yesterday I was on a phone call with a brand and blogger friend, discussing a future collaboration. Her Instagram following is extremely impressive, and obvious, allowing her amazing opportunities – which is amazing! For those of us with less of an Instagram following, it can be hard to show our value upfront, if our IG numbers aren’t where we want them. Often times, brands immediately look at the Instagram following, which I totally understand, as it has it’s place, for sure – it is your first impression, after all. However, I feel like some brands have missed the mark, lately, on how important the blog is. However, on our call yesterday, it was exciting to feel equally valued by the brand, in regard to my blog page views vs her IG following. They saw value in both, and esteemed them equally. That is so refreshing to me! To me, it’s a no-brainer, as RewardStyle recently reported that 70% of RS purchases still come from the blog. Guys, that is HUGE!! And a statistic you should definitely be using when pitching your blog to a brand.
At the end of the day, you have to know your strengths and be rooted in them. I am by no means saying that Instagram does not have a place in your influence. I truly believe that all social platforms are essential to promoting your blog, and have their place, they just shouldn’t be the end goal. Now, more than ever, it’s time to hone in on what matters the most – you, and your business! The only thing you will ever be in control of, is your blog.