The Beauty of Blog World 2009

Published in: Beauty Tips, Just For Fun, News

The beauty of blog world 2009

What’s a blog?

Because I blog and I know that some of you do, too, I wanted to share what I’ve been learning about here at the Blog World and New Media Expo 2009 (new media as in Twitter, Facebook and YouTube).



The first question I get a lot when I tell people I blog is, “What’s that [blogs]? Like a website?”

Yup, you got it. The word’s just a contraction of the term “Web log.” They come in countless shapes and sizes but usually contain regular entries (articles/journal entries) of commentary, descriptions of events or fancy stuff like graphics or video. Most (but not all) of them display content in reverse-chronological order.

I came to Blog World 1) because it’s held here in Vegas :), 2) because I spend a big chunk of my life blogging, 3) because I’d like to be able to express myself in new and more creative ways, 4) because blogging is more fun for me when I know that it’s also fun for my readers and 5) because I’d like to grow the blog’s traffic and find out about income opportunities/blogging for a living.

I’ll report more specific tips than the ones in this post as the Expo progresses, but one of my favorite sessions so far has been Stimulating Conversations with Women in the Social Mediasphere, with Aliza Sherman, author of The Everything Blogging Book.

Aliza and some of the speakers talked about the differences between how men and women tend to communicate and how those differences are reflected in blogs and social media (speaking very generally, women tend to appreciate building relationships more than most men do).

That blogs are about community and interaction are growing themes. The social aspects of the web have taken the internet by storm. Specifically, what can bloggers do to tap into an increasingly social internet?

They can focus on building authentic relationships with readers, which I read to mean being honest, respectful, useful, and speaking with people vs. talking at them.

But what if you want to start a blog in a highly competitive niche (like beauty)? Is it too late to start?

No, none of the experts thought so, but competition can impact the size of your audience. It may be harder to reach thousands of readers/day (if that’s even your goal), but it’s still possible.

When you want to blog

Figure out what you want out of blogging or Twitter or Facebook (but not necessarily the day you start). If you’ve never blogged before, take it slowly, remembering that you’re putting yourself out there in front of the entire planet (only share what you’re comfortable sharing with the world). Eventually, though, the experts agree, know your goals and objectives. It’ll help you get where you’re trying to go.

I started MBB back in 2007 not really knowing what I was doing or what my goals were. Within six months, though, I’d decided that I wanted to blog daily, to grow my audience and to earn some blog rent from it if possible.

While fun, blogging can also be hard work.

It depends on your goals, but since 2007, 2,100 posts later, I’ve read through my camera’s manual at least 10 times (to learn how to take vibrant, sharp pics), have spent thousands of dollars on camera equipment and computers (I recommend Macs), have completed dozens of Photoshop tutorials and have spent thousands of hours writing more than 1 million words online. All of that’s just to restate the obvious, “Know what you’re getting into and why you want to do it.”

Other quick tips from yesterday’s event:

  1. Keep an editorial calendar — I’m a firm believer in ‘em. Mine helps me plan what I’m going to blog about. I also use it to jot down the release dates of makeup collections to help me remember.
  2. Are you speaking with your readers or talking at them? — Remember that there’s a real live human being on the other side of that connection, someone who doesn’t like to be talked at.
  3. Problogger.net
    Absolutely love Problogger.net

  4. Build relationships — The experts seem to agree that success in blogging (unless your goal is to use your blog as a journal) comes down to building relationships with people and doing something that both you and your readers find rewarding.

Growing your audience


I’ll have more to say on this later, but an overarching theme yesterday had to do with marketing and how people just hate being sold to. We hate cheesy advertising that treats us like we’re just a statistic in a demographic category — i.e. women aged 25-35, single, no children, college degree, moderate income. Just tell us the truth about things, and let us make our own decisions.

Well, that’s all I have for now. Have a great Friday. :)

I hope that even if you don’t have an interest in blogging or social media, you still found this a little interesting.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,

Karen

19 Comments

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So far, 19 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Faye says:

    Hi Karen,

    Glad you’re enjoying Blog World, and thanks for sharing! It was fun to read. I’ll probably never have the time to blog (or maybe the creativity, but thankfully we have you to pick up the slack :).

    P.S. If you have time and haven’t seen it before, I highly recommend Cirque du Soleil at the Bellagio (“O”) . . .it’s a fantastic show!

  2. Tavia says:

    I like to read on Problogger because there I can find real advice and exact situations about how to do this and that. If I have a question concerning my blog the Problogger definitely has the answer. It’s very informative and explains everything in details.
    .-= Tavia’s last blog post… Goodies for skin: Collistar, La Prairie, Chanel, Garnier, Avon & L’Occitane =-.

  3. Kelly says:

    Hi Karen,

    Thanks so much for this post, I can’t wait to hear more! I am definitely going to this event next year. :)
    .-= Kelly’s last blog post… OPI Holiday Wishes for Winter 2009 Swatches and Review – Part I =-.

  4. Great Post! I can’t wait to read the rest of what you have to say relating to growing your audience. My blog is still quite new and I feel like such a baby in the blogging world. So I’m trying to soak in all I can so I can be a big kid!!! ;)
    .-= Khalia Bentson’s last blog post… HLMN Weekend Roundup 10.9.09 =-.

  5. Lina says:

    Awesome information! I’m new to blogging too and agree it’s hard work! One (of the many) reasons I love your blog is you make it fun to read every single day. I love your humor and pictures and the bits/pieces of your personal life that you share are endearing.

    Can’t wait to hear more about the event you attended!
    .-= Lina’s last blog post… Bobbi Brown Black Plum Deluxe Brush Collection (Neimans Exclusive) =-.

  6. Lee says:

    Thanks for sharing this information! I too have an interest in profiting from blogging but just really don’t know which direction to go. Maybe someday it will hit me.
    .-= Lee’s last blog post… Framing =-.

  7. Abby says:

    Hi Karen…I really enjoyed this post. You know, I’ve been reading your blog every day for oh, say, hmmm…a year and a half? It’s literally my favorite place to stop on the webs!

    I really admire what you have done and how you have worked so hard to get there/here…it all shows in your work and you have so much to be proud of. Truly. You go girl!! Thanks for all that you do, I know I (and all of your tons of other readers!) really super appreciate it.

    Keep up the fantastic work, I can’t wait to see where you’ll lead us, fearless beautyblogger!! =)

  8. Briana says:

    This was an awesome post. I’m trying to figure out right now what I want for my blog. I know I want to be able to use it as a writing portfolio of sorts at some point in the future, but I’m having a hard time picking a main topic or focus.
    Can’t wait for the rest of the insider tips you have!
    .-= Briana’s last blog post… Snow day… =-.

  9. Christina says:

    I’m glad you’re having fun and learning at BlogWorld! Would’ve loved to go, but maybe next year. Thanks for the updates about the sessions! :-)
    .-= Christina’s last blog post… The Cranky Professor =-.

  10. Amanda says:

    Hey Karen,
    I haven’t posted a comment in ages (been reading everyday though!). I’m not a blogger, but just wanted to say “thanks”. I think the main reason why I love your blog so much is that it feels really personal, even though we’ve never met! I love how you speak with us, your readers, and have connections. I’m sure you will learn tons at the convention. Have fun!

  11. Dao says:

    WOW,these are great tips! I always wonder what’s the correlation between the length of blog post and number of comments :)
    .-= Dao’s last blog post… Beauty Literotica: Fine Beauty by Sam Fine =-.

  12. amy says:

    Thanks for the post Karen! I started blogging as another creative outlet for myself only about 2 months ago and it it is great to get tips and guidance to improve.
    .-= amy’s last blog post… Sharing My Stash: Costume Feather Lashes =-.

  13. Marina says:

    hi, Karen
    Great post! I have Problogger in my google reader.Would love to read more posts about this event!
    .-= Marina’s last blog post… Les Impressions Makeup Collection by Chanel for SPRING 2010 =-.

  14. jeannie says:

    Thanks for the tips, Karen! You are one of my fav bloggers!

  15. Sarab says:

    Hi Karen,

    Just to say that I looove your blog, you’re definitely my favourite beautyblogger. I don’t post a lot (very few times in fact but only because I don’t have access to the products you write about so I don’t have an opinion and because I’m not confident writing in english) but I read you everyday, religiously. It’s great to know that you’re learning so much in those conferences… that means your blog is getting better!!!

  16. these tips are really appreciated! I love how u have such a personal touch to ur blog entries and it’s enjoyable to read ur blog everyday:)
    .-= Blovet Beauty’s last blog post… RAINBOW EOTD & TOKYOFASHION.COM =-.

  17. Kristen says:

    Wow, 2,100 posts!? Don’t I feel like such a lazy beauty blogger. ;)
    I think we both started around the same time in 2007 (although I was on hiatus for about 6 months), but at 800 posts, I thought I had a lot. More work to do, methinks!
    great post! :)
    .-= Kristen’s last blog post… this just in: coco rocha is the new face of rimmel london =-.

  18. Marilyn says:

    Hey Karen! Thanks for the tips. I’m really struggling to commit enough time and attention to my blog (although I do post about once a week). Maybe I should make a blog calendar like you do…
    .-= Marilyn’s last blog post… Zazzle sale ends tonight! Save 14.92% =-.

  19. Amanda says:

    thanks for the tips!! i’ve just starting blogging and this really helped xoxo

    blushmebeauty.blogspot.com
    Amanda recently posted … FOTD: purple smoky look

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