Yesterday I put a plea on my Facebook page asking if my followers would help me do a little test. After finally getting round to making and photographing the Paleo Caramel Slice recipe that I’d been promising for over a week, and putting it up on the blog and sharing on Facebook, it was shown to just twenty two people between Friday and Monday, and had gathered just one like.
So I pinned the post to the top of the page, and asked if people could like it to show that they had seen the original message asking them for help. Once people started reacting to the recipe post, it was shown to more, and the post has now reached almost five hundred people. What I’ve noticed is that when I share a meme, news article or (sometimes) other people’s posts, Facebook will show it to hundreds, if not thousands. When I share my own blog posts, I’m lucky for them to reach fifty.
It’s left me feeling seriously despondent, and wondering for the millionth time, how on earth a small time blogger like me, with zero marketing budget, will ever ‘get out there’
I wrote my first post on this blog on April 29th 2013, and in the last three years I have written over a thousand posts, and published almost seven hundred. I have also written and published a non-fiction book, and am currently halfway through draft one (43k words written) of my first novel. That’s a whole lot of words that have been written – for my catharsis, to potentially inspire others and sometimes because I’m being paid to.
I’ve been featured on the Huffington Post, The Mighty, She Knows, Autism Awareness.com and countless blogs across the web. I’ve had one post go properly viral, several go semi-viral, and had so many comments on my posts last year that I decided in January to switch off the comments function.
I have made genuine friends through Mummy Tries, and have received love and support through tough times. If nothing else, this has been the greatest gift that blogging has brought me.
The good, bad and ugly of blogging
BUT over the last couple of years I’ve also witnessed pettiness, spitefulness and bitchiness that would put most teenage school girls to shame. I’ve seen nepotism that beggars belief as well as selfish, shitty messages that spread like wildfire because they are ‘so hilarious’ (apparently). I’ve seen people sell their soul for a sponsored post, and spend so much time on social media there can be no way that they are properly looking after their children as well.
Right now my three kids are running riot because I’m ignoring them and writing this instead. I need to get it out though, otherwise it will drive me insane all day long, and if I wait until after I’ve put them to bed I will more than likely not be able to articulate what I want to say (because I am frazzled by that point). I don’t do this very much at all any more, but every now and then I do, and it is not okay.
Ultimately Facebook is one of many areas where I feel like I’m bashing my head against a brick wall. I’ve come to realise that almost every single aspect of blogging is about who you know and not how good you are. It’s about who your contacts are, and who is championing you. Blogging is a huge distraction that often takes time away from the things you should be doing.
I’ve come to the gloomy conclusion that unless every blog post you write goes viral, and you end up amassing a gigantic following, or you’re prepared to dedicate your entire life to the blogging cause, then you are very unlikely to properly succeed in this game.
Cards on the table: I don’t know what to do about this right now, so please feel free to send me your answers on a postcard…