The fashion blogging industry is not done growing, and it’s not done changing.
The beauty of blogging is that anyone can start a blog “can start one?”. In the beginning there was a small set of people who were tech savvy and creatively inclined who pioneered the industry. Over the years that number of pioneers trail-blazers? has grown as technology has become easier to use and it’s easier to create amazing content. With over 78% of Americans using the Internet, traffic numbers are growing, and last year for the first time we got more of our news online than in print. As someone vested in the success of the digital industry, this is great news.
A wider audience means that’s where business will be heading. For bloggers, we’re already getting a taste of this growth; some blogs are getting well over one million visitors a month, which is an incredible influence. This also means that the realm of possibility and opportunity is visible to more people. Over the last few years, a growing number of professionals from the traditional media industry have invested in their digital presence. You have people like Nina Garcia, Anna Dello Russo, and Derek Blasberg developing their personal blogs. Editors like Jane Pratt are starting websites instead of print publications. Instead of aiming to become an editor at Vogue, Emily Weiss left print to start Into The Gloss. Recently, supermodel and entrepreneur Iman invested in digital by starting Destination Iman. One can expect as the success of the digital publications increase that this trend will continue in great strides. As more money and resources are poured into digital, the digital consumer will become more savvy and more discerning in the content they frequent.
Luckily, technology has enabled the masses to create beautiful, quality work. Blog platforms are easier to manage, blog designs/themes are inexpensive and are getting easier to customize, photography gear is improving in stride. On the other hand, as a community independent bloggers, we will have to become more resourceful in order to keep up. There are several reasons for this, one being that before, print and digital were consumed in different ways, in different environments. In the future, the differentiation will be significantly lessened, as expectations of content rise. While the difference will be discernible in the eyes of independent bloggers and publications, in the eyes of the readers who don’t blog we will all be on the same playing field.
Will independent blogging survive? Absolutely! This is probably the biggest opportunity the blogging community has ever had. Right now we are at a point where we have all the tools to articulate our voices. We have the information we need to learn how to grow a readership. We have the tools to amplify our message. We also have the power to create content that has never been touched, we can break rules and innovate and find new audiences. The competition to create the best content is going to get greater and greater, and will be one of the most fulfilling challenges a blogger will have to take on.
As a community, we’re going to have to push ourselves harder than before. Are we ready for it?