When blogging first got started, it was like just an online journal to document and share with your close friends and loved ones, with the occasional visitors/strangers dropping by into your blog, it wasn’t something that could see a phenomenal growth yet potentially, there were thoughts/suggestions & discussions that blogging or blogs would not be relevant, with the emergence of micro-blogging platforms such as Twitter and social networking platforms such as Facebook.
During the early days, it was influenced by SEO 2.0 and internet marketing, although essential in the growth and development of a blog today, some blogs were more designed like a internet marketing style. However, with the evolution and revolution of social networking channels and platforms, how has blogging changed in the midst of social media networking and engagements ? Are blogs still relevant ? Or micro-blogs be the next wave of blogging ? How about the debate o the growth electronic magazines style blogs / micro-blogs with the expansion of tablets primed to be one of the growth areas in digital technology for 2010 and 2011, possibly 2012 and beyond too.
Over my journey in blogging for the past 4 years, into my 5th year since April 2006, it was a very interesting, exciting and enriching journey, in terms of writing, sharing, photography and social networking. I started as a blogger who just wants to share his photography and travel stories, next up was my personal blog in the fields of personal development, enrichment, growth, sports science, digital technology and information technology. Never did it occurred to me over these few years, that blogging can and will extend beyond my blog itself, into social networking and engagements with different brands and companies via PR companies. The networking within and around social media networks, have propelled me into knowing many more wonderful friends locally in Singapore and around the world, having the chance to communicate, chat and meeting them in person too.
I went from a blogger to somehow an in-between media, writer and photojournalist. My blogs went through different templates and theme revamps a few times along the way, starting from borrowed domain and hosting, migrating to own domain name and self-hosted sites. Nowadays, I am sometimes “classified” as media and not as a blogger anymore. It’s a compliment and somehow, it grew by itself over the years without me knowing it, entering into a field that I am not industrially qualified or working in. All these would not have come without opportunities, invitations and engagements by various PR companies and I am very grateful to all of them for everything mentioned above.
How will social media/blogging/micro-blogging scene change ? Some questions / thoughts
- Are we becoming less social and friendly even though we are always engaged on/in social media networks and platforms ?
- Are we becoming more snobbish and arrogant just because we are “highly connected” in social media networks and platforms ?
- Have blogs become less credible and less trusted due to so many blogs around us and the world ?
- Or have we become too lazy to do/own and maintain a full fledged blog and prefer to go into micro-blogging sites, without too much hassles, troubles and maintenance ?
- Will E-Mags on Tablets replace or complement blogs or micro-blogs ?
- Are companies and brands still insist on ROI for every amount of “investment” they put into ? Don’t companies and brands realise the ROI for every amount of “investment” they put into traditional media tools and channels, you can’t really put a figure to it nor a quantitive mathematically proven formula.
- Communication in the real world, is face to face daily; it is a 2 way channel going to an fro between both parties. It’s the same for social media channels and networking platforms. How much are people in the social media scene doing it as a 2 way engagement channel ?
- The blogging and social media scene becoming too business/market like and both sides engaging and fighting for engagements, connections, publicity and businesses ?
- Will you be able to grow your influence as a leader or expert or speciality in your field of knowledge, interest, hobby or career ?
Growing my 2 blogs, are just as much wonderful and influential, learning and developing myself from a nobody to a credible writer and photojournalist, with trust and following among my friends and followers. Looking forward ahead in 2011 and beyond, I do not have a magic ball to see the future of social media networking, blogging, the internet and beyond. In my personal opinion, I for-see some potential trends in
- Tablets, Smart phones and social media connectivity ~ getting bigger in participation and connected, expansion of social media networking
- Greater and wider exchanges between brands/companies via PR companies with the social media channels and blogging community
- The rise of the social media influencers
- More leveraging between inter and intra with social media channels and brands/organisations and PR companies
The thoughts and questions will always give me a reminder that I still have a lot to learn, grow and develop as a writer, photojournalist and social media enthusiast. Reminding myself to be humble and have humility at all times, always learning, always sharing and transforming into a mentor and influencer.
I still have a lot to learn and share and I am very grateful and thankful to everybody who has helped , guided or given me opportunities along my blogging to social media networking journey.