Struggling for authenticity in the blogosphere
I started blogging way before 2013 but I never knew how big the blogosphere was until that year. It was when I learned that marketing was no longer as we once knew it, and that content marketing was king. It was a new territory and it was very exciting!
When I started blogging, it was because I’ve always been a writer and I needed a platform to tell my stories. I learned later on that the blogosphere is more massive than you can imagine, and I jumped right in because I wanted to tell my stories to a much bigger audience.
I started off well. I networked with fellow bloggers, accepted invitations to blogger events, and I collaborated with different brands and PR agencies. I met different people and enjoyed many benefits. But the joy wore off fast. The freebies were great, they still are, but I wanted to be something more.
Then I got busy because my son, Pablo, started acting in theatre and I was the designated chaperone. I couldn’t sacrifice my full time job, so between that and my eldest’s professional commitments, I was left with very little time to blog.
When I got back, I found myself lagging miles behind other bloggers in terms of numbers. The blogging landscape had changed and I needed to do something if I wanted to stay in the race.
I considered giving up the blog because I was discouraged by what I’ve been seeing. I wanted to stand my ground and didn’t want to compromise my principles. But I prayed about it and I realised that I have not been doing enough.
Becoming more Accessible to my readers
This year, I decided to make myself much more accessible to my readers and social media followers. I’ve always spoken true but the language needed a few adjustments. At the suggestion of Donna Donor of Everyday Adventures with Donna and Kib, I’ve been micro-blogging daily on Facebook since January and I’ve been using tag-lish as a medium for it.
I was hesitant at first because I’ve always been a conventional English writer, but I decided to give it a go and it seems to work for me. It wasn’t before long that I have established some level of trust between me and my readers. It made it less awkward to invite them to read my blogs or watch our videos because I have been chatting with them more personally through the page.
Granted that many of my followers found my Facebook page because of the giveaway that Donna and I hosted at the beginning of the year, but here’s the thing – what’s a message without a receiver?
I can write the most incredible blogs, but if I have no one to read them, they’re useless. So you toss that net out to sea and hope that what you catch can become something more.
Presenting myself well to my readers and followers
When I was still performing professionally, I never showed up to a venue without looking like a star. It’s just how I was trained. And the principle behind that was because we value the audience we have. We do not take their time for granted. I haven’t worn makeup nor played dress up in years, but this year, I put on make up and I dressed up for the online events I attended. It’s silly, I know, but I realised that my followers and the brands I collaborate with deserve more from me.
I know it’s not about the aesthetics, but if you want people to regard you and what you do professionally, don’t show up an amateur.
Staying authentic to myself
It’s tempting, but I still think that I should remain reasonably picky with the events and brands I work with. It’s only right to collaborate with brands that resonate with me and accept products I intend to use.
And yes, giveaways are good. The tricky part is that I don’t want to attract followers who are only after my giveaways, I want people to read my stories and be able to take home something from them. I’m really just a writer searching for my audience in the hope that I can help them and give them even a flicker of hope through my writing. I certainly do not want my blog to just be a multi-paged advertisement billboard. I want a blog that has substance and value.
It’s a fine line to thread, and I’m still learning the ropes.There will always be a part of me, or a glimpse of my life, in every blog that I write. And I hope that through my stories, I can show people how God is real in my life and in my family.
It’s been 9 years but I think that I’ve grown so much over the last three months. The breakthrough happened with I got off my high horse and became willing to adapt changes to make it work.
I look forward to more years of blogging and vlogging, and perhaps, in the near future, through it, I’d be able to publish a book, or even win a Palanca, you’ll never know, right?
“Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves” Philippians 2:3.
Hello mommy May.. please continue inspiring us with your blogs. I’ve learned a lot from you and I can say all your writings are really worth reading. I also hope that you can publish a book someday. I’ll get a copy for myself for sure ?
Please continue to inspire us. Don’t give up! We support you. Godbless momshie! ?
I can totally understand your thoughts, I guess, it’ s you God’s timing. As long as you have a passion on what you’re doing, just continue doing it. You are doing it for yourself, with reader or without readers, you still expressing your passion and Creativity. I love blogging, I have been blogging for years but until now don’t know my niche and since I work full time as a nurse, blogging is just a hobby to blog about my life journey. I am doing this for myself as an outlet so with without readers, I am happy blogging..:)
I feel you. It’s a struggle to ‘fit in’ for me too. I don’t really identify as a mom blogger because I don’t always talk about motherhood. Over recent years, it’s more about faith and a personal journey. A part of me wants to reach out to other women. Then, there’s the business/influence side of it. I can’t fake it or do things to be accepted or to gain followers. At the end of the day, if my blog has motivated or inspired one woman, that’ll do. Keep writing!
I couldn’t relate more! I started blogging back in 2009 more as a personal diary for me to come back to but just like you, I found networks and people to collab with for a time then got sucked into other life matters away from the web. When I came back and decided to blog more seriously, there were already HEAPS of bloggers who were in the space. I also was left behind in numbers and following so I totally relate! I especially love the fact that you want your audience to know God is indeed real and that He’s present in your family and life. <3 I've set a similar goal for myself this year and in the years to come.
I was never gone in the blogosphere but I felt that I was being left behind because PR wanted numbers and longevity didn’t really matter. it came to a point when i questioned myself. am i not good enough? why am i always left out? it all boiled down to why I wanted to blog, because it has always been my passion. sabi ko nga, ang ibang biglaang influencers, pag wala na silang project, hindi na din yan magpopost, pero tayong nasa puso at isipan talaga ang pag cocontent pag bablog, me bayad or wala, binili natin or hindi, me campaign o wala, magsusulat at magsusulat pa din tayo.
no offense po sa mga biglaan influencers.
Hi! I can relate so many ways as a blogger. I also wanted to aim for authenticity in content rather than gaining huge followers who are just after your giveaways. Sure, giveaways are good once in a while, but it shouldn’t be the main thing why people are drawn to your content. I was even tempted to change the tone of my writings or posts just to get that “masa feel” but realized it’s not me anymore. I am also fond of writing lengthy, English captions, haha!
Anyway, I am happy to read your post, realizing I am not alone. 🙂 Let’s keep writing and inspiring people for the glory of God!
I can totally relate to your experience. I’m actually a new blogger and the idea of competing with so many bloggers is overwhelming. It’s hard to overlook the numbers but at some point in time, we need to be authentic to ourselves. Because I feel like chasing the numbers won’t get you anywhere. In fact, it will tire you out. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. 🙂
Reading this really inspired me. Been having a rocky relationship with blogging, but i never let go because i am committed. I just hope that all the effort does pay off and that I am doing the right things because it’s been some time. Goodluck on your blogging journey and I’m excited to read blogs like this and more hahahah
I can totally feel you! In fact, I think I’m in the same boat as you. Before I was actually this blogger who just want to write and inspire but as time passed and when I got so busy with work, most of it changed and my blog got affected. But with just the right tricks and dedication, I’m sure that we’ll both get through this phase. Good luck on your journey! 🙂
This is a good read, very inspiring. 🙂
Manila Pepper started way back 2016 by my boyfriend (now my husband haha) but after a few months he was not able to write again due to his busy schedule. Last year I lost my job and I decided to take a short online course about WordPress, thus Manila Pepper came back! I convinced him to write blogs again so that I can practice my web designing skills. haha
Ivan M. Jose
This article is so relatable to me. I used to write in English only and nothing else. You won’t catch me writing a Facebook or IG post in Tagalog. However, engagement was so low. I decided to experiment, wrote in Tagalog or Taglish, I became more personable, and it worked! People began interacting with my posts. In terms of authenticity, this is also something to keep in mind. I used to be conscious of what I post but again, there was little interaction. So, I just posted whatever I fancied, and made me happy. Again, people began engaging. So yeah, we need not be too conscious in social media as long as we’re not violating anything.
Janessa Anne Pablo
good read! conversely, i am very accessible, always dressed up to the nines and a bit filtered on the blogosphere. take it from me, too much of either spectrum is not really good. we as bloggers really need to find the balance in everything. always a work in progress.
Can relate to you on this one. Last year, I almost stop blogging. The reason was to focus on my baby and the family that we are starting to build. I decided to go back or should I say be active in the industry last January. Been away for less than a year and I a lot has changed and I am still trying to cope up with the changes.
I agree with you about content marketing. Nowadays, some influencers and bloggers just contented on copy paste articles. Having your own content will be different from others and besides algorithms will check on it if your blog articles are only press releases. Unique content is still the key.
I’m an introvert so social media engagement is really a challenge for me. I have few followers but I still blog because it is my passion. People stumbled on my blog through search so yung blog post ko, may nagbabasa pa rin. 🙂 I think it is our passion that will keep us going.
True that Mommy May. There are even times na I want to quit na nga. Buti na alng there are still signs that keeps me going, basta may nagbabasa pa, Go lang ng Go!
Mommy wag kang susuko, ituloy mo lang ang pag bblog baka anjan talaga yung para sayo, andito lang kami will support you. Ngayong nakilala na kita at ngayon mo lang din ako matatandaan dahil now lang ako nagoakita sa wall mo. Ganyan din ang mangyayari sa iba makikilala at makilala ka din ng mga mommys na tulad namen.. kaya keep on blogging mommy kaya mo yan.. akala mo lang walang nagbabasa pero meron meron… keep it up mommy
I know exactly how you feel! I went on a hiatus from blogging after I gave birth, pero I just had to write again, just because. 🙂
Keep it up sis! Looking forward to reading your book someday. 🙂
This is what I feel in YouTube naman, ang hirap maghanap ng viewers since sobrang daming vloggers. Usually yung may mataas ang views di ko gets ang content hahaha. Di ko kayang gawin yung ginagawa nila. Mas mahal ko din talaga ang blogging 🙂
Your blog posts are worth reading. I always learn new things from you and love how you present your writing in a way na easy to read and so pleasing. You are one of those bloggers i truly admire.
It is hard to stand out in the blogosphere. But staying true to ineself and connecting with readers gives leverage.
Maria Cristina Sadicon
I am truly admired you fully housewife for your informative, healthful,and helpful blog.You are one of the best bloggers.Just enjoy what your doing and be positive always.I like the way you are
I am comfortably reading your article,very precise ,to the point ,many would relate❤️I just love it
I am also an aspiring blogger but I dont know where to start. Writing is not that simple. It takes a lot of passion to write great content. I salute you on that. Ive read your blog about marriage and it is an eye opener for me. Just continue what you have started. Continue to inspire lots of people especially to us your fellow mommies.