Friday, September 18, 2015

Why even bother with a pet blog? (It's a rhetorical question)

Liam the pug spells beautifully for this pet blog
I read a lot of pet blogs each and every week. But I also read all sorts of other blogs, too. In fact, I read a lot of blogs about search engine optimization and online marketing. (That's sorta my day job.) And this week, I stumbled across two blog entries that threw me for a bit of a loop.

These two entries (which you should read in their entirety; I'll link to them at the end of this piece) have to do with the concept of blogging as a recreational activity. In essence, these two bloggers were discussing the value of both writing blogs and reading blogs. One blogger wondered if blogging had reached a nadir, and the other thought blogs still had some life left.

These are vital issues to ponder, as our industry is really changing.

When I started this blog 5 years ago, there weren't that many pet bloggers out there. And during the day, I was writing up keyword-stuffed pieces for content farms. It was easy to get noticed, as the search engines weren't that sophisticated and there weren't that many people talking.

Now, everything has changed.

Just look how many pet bloggers participate in the Wordless Wednesday series each week. And while content farms went the way of the dodo, there are still plenty of people out there writing up all kinds of content all day long.

Readers suffer from exhaustion, simply because they can't take it all in. And unless you have your SEO nailed down tight, search engines won't serve your content to people who might enjoy it. This is a tough landscape. It's easy to get discouraged and give up.

But here's the thing.

I read these particular blog entries on a day in which my blog meant a ton. My words meant a lot to me.

When I was reeling from the aftermath of Eamon's death, I was wracked with guilt and wondering if I took him in for his final visit just a little bit too soon. So I went back through this blog, and I found an interesting pattern. In the beginning, I wrote a lot of entries about Eamon's quirks and cuteness. In the end, I wrote a lot about his pain. I worried for him. I experimented with therapies. I saw him decline. Reading through all of my own words brought me a huge sense of comfort. I knew I'd done the right thing.

And then I went out and read many blog entries written by other people who had also lost their pets. They felt the same things I did, and they were faced with the same nasty choices. We formed a sort of community in my mind, and that also brought me relief.

So when I read these entries about the value of blogging, I couldn't help but hope that everyone will just keep on writing. I need to write for myself. I need to read the words of others, too.

So if you're on the fence about writing your pet blog: Keep with it.

I need you.

And check out the blog entries I'm talking about here and here. Love to hear your thoughts on them.

4 comments:

  1. We sometimes think about the value of our blog and the time it consumes but keep plugging on. TW just saw that my little blog is in the top 1,000,000 sites outta 30 million so I guess we’re doing ok. We just don’t understand the SEO part of it which is why we’re ranked 3.

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    1. That's nothing to snort at. Good for you! I'm thinking about pulling together some SEO tips for we pet bloggers, so keep an eye on this page. You might see them soon!

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  2. BTW, I’m sorry about the loss of your fur baby.

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    1. Thanks so much. It's great to get so much support from other people who get it. It really helps.

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