My journey as a blogger started like any other who started at the same time as me. It was to look for a place to share my thoughts to the world. Though I intended it to be a weblog (an online diary), it became my personal space on the world wide web. It was also the time where most people ventured out over the internet to see what possibilities may take place. It was all new and inviting.
Start of Blog Monetization
Then blog monetization started. This is when weblogs or commonly known now as blogs became popular with search engine optimization (SEO) companies. They buy links with specific keywords to be inserted in blog posts. It was a win-win situation. Win for the client (the owner of the inserted link), the SEO company (who served as a link broker), and the blog owner. Blogging was fun at that time because you are getting paid to talk about the things you like. But its heyday came to an end when Google updated its algorithm to Google Panda around 2011. Links inserted to unrelated blog posts (context) weren’t considered high-quality links, thus link buying from unrelated blogs lessen.
The call for quality and related content became the aim of the Google Panda update. Thus, niche blogging became a thing. This is also the reason why this blog was once a general blog of all sorts, then I sifted to personal musings plus home improvement. I share a few tidbits of my life and more on home and garden updates.
The Emergence of Social Media
Social media (sites) started around 1997 when Six Degrees was created. It was similar to Facebook. Then blogging sites became popular around 1999. For there, it gave birth to MySpace and LinkedIn around 2000. Online photo-sharing sites like Photobucket and Flickr started around that time, too, then YouTube in 2005.
Everything started to change when Facebook and Twitter were introduced to the world around 2006. Social media popularity skyrocketed alongside the invention of smartphones. Other social sites started popping. With this came along opportunities for capture audiences for advertisers and monetization for popular accounts.
The Rise of Influencer Marketing
To be honest, influencer marketing started way back in the early 20th century. People, personas, or even mascots carry the name of the brand and were used to imprint to the market. Famous figures like Santa Claus, fictional he maybe became a powerful influencer. Having this chubby man promote a product became appealing especially during Christmas time.
Celebrities are influencers as well. They are hired by brands to endorse their products and services. They have posters, TV commercials, and even their faces printer on large billboards or even in the product itself.
But as the world became smaller with the advent of social media, ordinary people with awesome talent, knowledge, or skills rose to popularity, thus, giving birth to now what we call influencers. They are not celebrities but they rose to fame because of the unique messages they offer.
One example is Megan Antoinette. She is a popular YouTube creator who got famous for her reaction videos. She listens and watches overseas music (she is from America) and shares them with her followers. Her followers love her authenticity that they follow her for her reaction and also her discoveries. Brand who are into the entertainment industry might contact her for more exposure.
My Own Journey
I am going to say this – I don’t consider myself an influencer – but I know even how little my circle is or my followers, to some certain degree, I have influenced them one way or another. Don’t we all? I mean social media made it possible for us to become an influencer in our own way. And I guess, I will settle with that kind of influencer in me.
No Sign of Stopping
This industry shows no sign of stopping. With the current pandemic, almost all people are online. More influencers are being made and more ordinary internet surfers are being converted to followers. And I believe, brands and companies, small, medium, or large, will eventually use this marketing strategy to disseminate their message.