The NEED to Blog and WHY you’ll do it…

by Christopher B. Marquis

Now I hate to constantly belabour the same point, but this is so important that it requires mentioning again and again until it sticks firmly into your mind:

A May 2008 report from the website eMarketer.com shows that between 2007 and 2012, blog readership will climb from 94 million to an astounding 145 million. That is an increase of 67%! Read that number again. Now, I could spend all day talking to you about the many different things you can do to ensure that your business becomes a big hit. But when you have something as easy as this, words just don’t seem to cut it.

You’d have a hard time finding anything else in the business world which can confidently predict a 67% increase. Is there anything else you need to know? You need to start a blog and start one now!

Think about ‘old’ big online moguls such as Google or Yahoo!. Why did they achieve so much success? Because they entered the market at the RIGHT time, when the projections for market growth were about to – and did – skyrocket. Again, that’s 67%…

So if this singular fact isn’t enough to get you going with a Blog, then really, nothing else will. But heck, I like to push things beyond the limit, even when it seems we’ve reached it. I’m going to give MORE reasons, more facts, as to why you NEED and will WANT to start blogging today, immediately, without pause, right NOW.

If you scour through the internet (as I’ve done for you) looking for the right material, correct and true facts, you’ll eventually land upon an excellent report researched and written by the Pew Internet and American Life Project in 2006. The subject was simple, yet very complex.

The focus of this study was the demographics of bloggers and the reasons which they gave as their raison d’etre as bloggers. There was a lot of interesting information in this report; I’ve gone ahead and pulled the most relevant of this data and presented it below.

Here are 5 points culled from this report which illustrate the importance of starting a blog ASAP.

Point #1: Increasing your readership

Around 8% of all internet users in America (12 million) maintain and keep a blog.

39% of U.S. internet users (about 40 million) read blogs.

That’s a 5:1 ratio…and as the eMarketer report suggests, that ratio will likely increase.

Point #2: For the money?

52% of bloggers cited personal expression and having a creative outlet as their reason for starting a blog.

Only 7% actually do it for the money. What does that tell you? In the first place – competition is low, since most people who run blogs aren’t considering the financial rewards possible. In the second place – you now have a large quantity of successful blogs you can look at and IMITATE, FOR the purpose of making money. The moral of the story is that CREATIVITY sells, but the creative seldom know it. Learn from that and reap the rewards.

Point #3: Easy on time

Only around one in ten bloggers spend ten or more hours per week on their blog. Now that’s an interesting point. There are a large number of successful blogs, and those who run these, aren’t necessarily working through the night. So, running your own blog and making money might not be that difficult or time-consuming after all. In fact, this separate “hobby” could turn out to be the easiest money you’ve ever made.

Point #4: Subject matter

When bloggers were asked which topics they generally focused upon, this tended to a hierarchy:

37% write about their own lives

11% focus on public issues

7% focus on entertainment-related topics (e.g. sports, business, technology, specific hobbies, religion, etc.)

If you want to maintain a large and growing readership, you have to let bloggers have the space they need for self expression. Internet users are looking for more than just content out of a blog; they want a personality and a face to go with it – remember this.

Point #5: Demographics

Knowing your readership is something you need to do before you begin blogging. You want to try to capture the largest demographic possible if you intend to make your blog a for-profit one.

54% of bloggers are under the age of 30.

Bloggers are evenly divided between the genders.

More bloggers live in suburban areas than live in cities.

60% of bloggers are white, 11% black, 19% English-speaking Hispanic, and 10% other.

So although the demographics certainly don’t rule out the fact that you should ALSO consider minority groups (race, age, gender) when creating your blogs, the point to understand is that you will want to focus upon the LARGEST demographic group for each category if you’re going to obtain a substantial (that is, rewarding) amount of readership. The best blogs will ALWAYS be those which are interesting to EVERY group, regardless of race, age, or gender. That’s the real gem. That’s the ticket to financial success through blogging.

There has been a lot of useful information and many good reasons given here for you to start up a blog right away. Don’t wait a second more – start blogging! Setting up a blog is fast and easy and usually free to boot! It also isn’t going to eat up all of your time. So what are you waiting for? What else do I need to tell you?

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