Day 2: The What and Why of Blogging - SOTB 2009
Self-expression and sharing expertise continue to be the primary motivations for bloggers, and 70% of all respondents say that personal satisfaction is a way they measure the success of their blog. Among Pros, however, the leading metric of success is the number of unique visitors. Hobbyist bloggers overwhelmingly blog about personal musings while professional and aspiring professional bloggers tend to be more topical. Hobbyists are also far more likely to discuss the political aspects of their topics while Pros and Self-Employeds do so very rarely. Tone is decidedly professional. Contrary to blogging’s image as a circular firing gallery, the majority of bloggers describe their blogging style as sincere, conversational or expert. Snarky and confessional are the least popular styles.
Blogs continue to be defined in a sense by the personal narrative, with 45% of all respondents (but only 12% of Pros) reporting that they blog about their “personal musings.” The diversity of the blogosphere, and the passion for sometimes very niche topics, is also reflected in this question – even given 23 choices including most broad fields of inquiry, 30% of respondents say that their primary subject is “Other.”
50% of bloggers discuss the political aspects of their preferred topics, but the rate goes down dramatically among Pros (37%) and Self-Employeds (35%). The same trend can be observed when respondents are asked whether they blog about the social or environmental aspects of their topics – 74% of bloggers generally do so, but only 66% of Pros wade into discussions about the environment.
For most bloggers (81%), even if the economic downturn has disrupted lifestyles or lives it has not changed the kind of topics or themes they write about. However, some are blogging more about the economy or focusing more on value. Given the personal nature of so many blogs, and the passion for their subject matter, it’s not surprising that 70% of all respondents say that personal satisfaction is a way they measure the success of their blog, including 76% of hobbyists. Among Pros, the leading metric of success is the number of unique visitors, followed by the number of posts or comments.
Contrary to blogging’s image as a circular firing gallery, bloggers are most likely to describe themselves as “sincere” (75%). Just 16% describe themselves as snarky. Continued on the next page