Last week my girl Fajr/Stylish Thought wrote a post, Small Town, Big Blog: 5 Ways to Show Local Love for IFB, and her timing couldn't have been more appropriate. For many weeks I have been thinking about the role of your local market when writing for your blog.
Back in December, I posted a survey on my own site. (Side note: surveys are a great way to gauge interest, especially if you bounce around in subjects like I do. I may have a passing interest in making something a series– and if my readers have no interest in it, it helps me know where NOT to focus my time.) One of the most surprising results I found where that my readers were equally split on reading content about New Orleans fashion & fashion events.
I believe there are cities and regions that a blogger can cover from a local perspective– such as New York City, Los Angeles, London, or Paris, that would break through barriers a local focus would have. These cities have such a global reach and impact that local blogging becomes global blogging. But what about the rest of us? Is it a benefit or a hindrance to focus on content on our hometowns?
Pros of Local Coverage:
- Most importantly– fresh, unique content. If you live in an area with fewer bloggers, you won't have as many people posting similar content!
- Similarly to the first point, you're carving out your own unique niche as well.
- Easier to find local advertising and build regional relationships. (via Birdonthestreet)
- Depending on the market, you could have less competition: for covering events, gaining access to events, being the go-to gal for the region. (via Birdonthestreet)
- The opportunity to connect with other bloggers locally and build a network. While it's great to have online bloggers to connect with and have for support, it's even more amazing to have local blogger friends. I love grabbing coffee with my lady bloggers for time to vent!
Cons of Local Coverage:
- Too targeted & too specific–readers may feel alienated reading about events and designers that are inaccessible to them.
- Difficulties in growing your audience– are you providing broad enough coverage to engage a non-local reader? Several bloggers I know expressed concern about this! Are you going to be okay with having a narrower, but perhaps more engaged & invested audience?
- It can become a lot of work to continually network with those local to you– it may build insincere relationships to keep in the loop. You may find that less dedicate bloggers are invited to events due to the amount they can network versus you. (via milkglassheart)
- Local popularity can overpower your content– as you attend more and more local events, they may expect or demand coverage. This could impact your natural editorial flow. (via Stylesmith)
While I haven't discontinued writing about local stores and events on my site, it has made me reconsider the time and resources needed to do so– so that I only pursue it if it's something I'm incredibly excited about.
Have you written about content related to your city? How have your readers responded to it? Have you found any pros or cons that haven't been mentioned above?