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Welcome to the roaring 20's… version 2.0!
Can you believe we are starting a new decade? I can't, but at the same time, I'm not letting my denial of this damper my excitement for all that is to come this year!
To go back to my “old school” blogging days, I decided to take a look back at how blogging has changed over the last decade.
I started by trying to see my first post of 2010, but then I remembered that I deleted a lot of content, over 8 years to be exact because most of it was no longer relevant. Since I started as a deals, coupon, and personal finance blogger, everything I shared that was no longer current was deleted.
This brought me to number one on my list of how the world of blogging has changed over the last decade and 9 other ways…
- The world is different. A decade ago we were in the midst of a global financial meltdown and the slow recovery out of it. So back then, content was being created with that in mind. The last 10 years and the improving economy had a big impact on what content was being promoted and we had to adjust accordingly.
- What was cool then, is becoming cool again. This includes giveaways! Giveaways were a big deal in the beginning. It kept things fun and exciting and helped us grow our followings. By using giveaway items that our target audience would want, we were also able to target high-quality followers. We are also seeing signs that old school blogging, where you document your life as entertainment and/or inspiration is also making a come back. People are enjoying the less polished content like they did at the beginning of the decade.
- Social media is TOTALLY different. There were no algorithms so people saw what you actually shared. It was something I took for granted and didn't fully appreciate until it was over. I've had to learn a lot about being flexible and welcoming change because when that happened, I was not as welcoming as I am now. I've learned that with change comes opportunity and that it can actually be a really good thing!
- Social media was TOTALLY different, part 2. Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat didn't even launch until 2010. Imagine blogging before then! It was both a really good thing and also a really bad thing! It was great because more people came straight to your blog every single day, but it was also bad because social media can drive huge amounts of new and existing readers if done right.
- Google Reader is no longer with us. It was a sad day when Google Reader was closed down. As a blog reader, I missed going to one place to see all the new posts from the blogs I followed. Those bloggers that didn't adapt and branch out on social media, didn't survive this. Thankfully I already had other ways to stay in front of my readers but it was still a bummer.
Another reminder of why email lists are so important for bloggers!
- Social media ads. With the addition of algorithms came ads on social media. At first glance, this was a huge bummer for bloggers. We could no longer reach those followers who chose to follow our blogs. But on second glance, this wasn't as bad as it looked. Our blogs were income-producing businesses and we were missing a huge part of how businesses work- marketing and advertising. Being able to reach new people with laser-sharp targeting to make sure that they were exactly the kind of people that would want our content was actually a huge bonus. We just had to adapt our ways of thinking to turn this into a huge bonus for us!
- There are more display ad options. I can't remember exactly how this played out, but at some point a news website shared one of my posts, linking back to my blog and it drew thousands and thousands of people in just one day. It was great to have that boost to my readership, but even better was that I made thousands of dollars from the ads on my site on that one day. At the time, it was more than I made from my ads in a whole month and it was with Google Adsense. Now there are more options when it comes to having display ads on your blog and they routinely pay a whole lot more than they used to. The better-paying networks have traffic minimums, but they also have better advertisers with bigger budgets.
- Sponsored posts. They just didn't exist like they do today. We were getting into review posts as the last decade started and some of us were thinking that there had to be a way to turn these posts into money and more of a story. I remember the exact moment I had a vision on how I wanted to do this, but it still took close to a year before it started to become mainstream.
- Influencer was a word that either didn't exist or was just never used. Even when our blogs were influencing the decisions of others, none of us bloggers back then would dare use that word. We were inspiring people with our words and experiences. To me, the word Influencer is something that is used on the back end by PR to define their side of a partnership. On my side of things, I want to effectively inspire and I never want to lose sight of that.
Travel blogging. Maybe second only to the income potential that has developed over the past decade for blogs, in general, is the emergence of travel blogging. This past decade is when I ventured into travel blogging and I have loved watching it grow. What started as a small niche addition to our blog has grown into what now fills at least 50% of our content. I think this has a lot to do with an approving economy and a shift from valuing things over experiences to valuing experiences over things. Some of my favorite moments in blogging have been when readers reach out to tell me that they used our experiences to plan their own travels and that they created lifelong moments because we shared our vacations with them.
At the end of the day, this is what it has been our driving force from day one. It's a Lovely Life! is all about sharing love and happiness. No matter what decade we are in, that has not and will not ever change.
Thank you all for your support over the past 18+ years! I can't wait to see where this new decade takes us all!
By the way, if you are interested in starting your own blogging business, I've got a FREE 5-day crash course that walks you through all the steps. Get the FREE course HERE.
Or, are you interested in traveling the world and blogging about it? If so, I've got a free on-demand training that shows you how to make that happen. Access the FREE travel blogger training HERE.