When Blogging IS About the Numbers


We hear it all the time: "Blogging shouldn't be about the numbers!"

You're probably constantly being told that you should only blog for the love of blogging and not worry about the numbers that come along with it such as page views, subscribers and likes. It's true that you should blog primarily for yourself and you should definitely love what you do, otherwise what's the point?

Unfortunately though, if you want to turn your blog into a business or even monetise your site a little bit, sometimes it has to be about the numbers. While you're blogging as a hobby it's fine to ignore your stats, but if you want to start working with brands and PRs you're going to have to give them some numbers. The more followers, views, likes and retweets you have, the more likely a brand is to want to work with you. A media kit is basically just a list of numbers - follower count, unique monthly users, DA, etc.

The problem arises when we start getting obsessed with the numbers and not just measuring our success by them, but also our self worth. You're no less of a blogger (or person) if your latest post doesn't receive as many hits as you would've wanted. When you start chasing the likes, you generally stop putting out your best work and start producing content that you think your readers want to see, rather than what you're passionate about. That almost never ends well.

The other problem caused by being obsessed with numbers is people artificially inflating their stats by buying followers and likes. This is a terribly immoral practice, but unfortunately some companies don't realise what's going on and these dishonest bloggers get more opportunities than people who work really hard to grow their following organically.

It's good to have goals. I see a lot of people talk about monthly goals such as reaching a certain number of followers on Instagram or views on their blog. Personally I enjoy seeing how many people read my newest post and I appreciate every new follower on social media. But you have to realise that every single person who follows you, who likes your tweet or comments on your blog - that's a real person. Another human has related to what you put out there and wants to connect with you. Don't dismiss that because not 'enough' people are interacting with you. Bloggers who constantly beg for likes, RTs, comments, subscribers and play the follow/unfollow game just to grow their own blog and never support back generally get on people's nerves.

In conclusion, if you want to earn money from your blog (and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that), then you're going to have to have an idea of your stats. That's how business works. But please don't lose yourself and your authenticity in pursuit of higher and higher numbers.

What are your thoughts on this? Is blogging about the numbers for you?

Liked this post? You might also enjoy:
Why is Blogging for Money So Controversial?


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Comments

  1. There's definitely an importance to the numbers when it comes to blogging for me, but it's not everything, and I do appreciate every follower I have for being a real person who likes me and my blog! Great post - very thought provoking and relevant. x www.aimeeraindropwrites.co.uk x

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    1. Exactly. Having huge numbers isn't as important as having an engaged audience, in my opinion. I'd rather have a handful of interactive followers than loads of people who don't read my content or talk to me! But you do have to have some idea of your numbers, big or small, if you want to monetise your blog - as you know. I couldn't say to a PR, "Sorry, I never check my DA or how many views I get because I only blog for the love of blogging!" They're trying to run a business and need to know whether you're worth investing in.

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  2. I must say I love the "number" part of blogging, I take it as a personal challenge. I love working on my SEO for example, to increase my DA and page views. However when it comes to social media following I don't really pay attention to it, if it grows it's great! If it doesn't, that's fine too :)

    Perrine
    www.ola-banana.com

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    1. It can be fun to challenge yourself to increase your numbers and reach ambitious goals. It makes you strive to create better content and become a better blogger in the process.

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  3. I think it’s super important to have stat based goals - if you want to grow, as you said, you need to set goals and keep on eye on the figures! I hope to never focus ‘too’ heavily on them though, and I think that’s super important.. 😇

    Andi | www.andthenzen.co.uk ✨

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    1. It's definitely important not to get obsessed with the numbers. That's when you're doing it for the wrong reasons.

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  4. In anything we do we should be able to set goals and be ambitious without anyone telling us that is wrong. Listen to the people that support you, that believe you can do what you are desiring to do. Of course we need to look at the numbers, even if it is just to see if we have gotten any new readers. Blogging is about numbers—I completely agree.

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    1. Yes, there's nothing wrong with being ambitious and wanting to do well in anything you do. There's a kind of stigma attached to blogging, though, and people who care about their numbers are often told they're wrong to do so.

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  5. As a relatively new blogger, the numbers side of things can be quite disheartening. Especially when, like you said, you've got accounts that have grown their followings through shady practices. It makes us feel like we can never catch up! Having said that though, I do enjoy the process of interacting with the community and growing my following organically. Yes it's a slower process, but it's satisfying and the engagement is always higher anyway, because it's a real person, not a number.

    Sneha | lifewithsneha.com

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    1. I know what it feels like to be a new blogger and think you'll never have as many followers as everyone else! But like you said, it's a lot more rewarding to grow your following organically as you get real people and genuine engagement.

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  6. I use to be obsessed with numbers, and it always lead me to quitting. I have learned to focus on my engaged members and build them one member at a time. I try learn this business slowly.
    www.Kingbraswell.com

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    1. That's the best thing to do. Pay attention to your engaged followers and don't take them for granted. The rest will come with time!

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  7. The number's side of things can be both encouraging and disheartening on different days. It's certainly important if you plan on making your blog your work but your right that there should be balance!

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    1. That's true, the numbers can be both encouraging and disheartening depending on how well your blog's doing that day!

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  8. There’s such a stigma against wanting to grow your blog with more followers, engagement etc but it is important - especially if it’s your full time job just like anything else! I completely agree with connecting with your readers though, I lovee talking to anyone who spends their time reading my blog! It’s a hard balance to get right in the blogosphere x

    Phoebe x

    itsphoeberose.com

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    1. I don't know why there's such a stigma, though. Like you said, especially if someone's blogging as a full-time job, they're going to have to care about the numbers. I love the human connection more than the numbers, though - interacting with people all over the world is one of the best parts of blogging!

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  9. I think it's sad that there is so much drama about wanting people to read what you write. I love writing and hope people get some value out of my content. I am trying to figure out how to get more in to this side of blogging after doing it for fun. On the other side, I love reading other peoples content. I enjoy the love that is clearly in their posts.

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    1. I love it when you can tell that someone is passionate about what they're writing about. Really makes their blog stand out.

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  10. The numbers definitely count for something because at the end of the day a lot of bloggers use blogging and their main source for income! It's important to not let the stats get to you though because then blogging starts to lose its fun xx

    Faye | Female Original

    www.femaleoriginal.com

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    1. Exactly. If blogging is what generates your income, you're going to have to think about the numbers a little bit. I also think blogging should be fun - most of us started it as a hobby so getting too worried about stats can definitely take the fun out of it.

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  11. You couldn't be more right. I only started a little less than 3 months ago. I started solely for the purpose of a fun hobby and something neat to share with others. I realized I wanted to reach more people than just my close friends and family so I started doing a little marketing, just getting out there on social media and such. Then I saw the option of monetizing and made my first few dollars (literally). My husband was so excited on my progress that he wanted to help. He's very loving and means well, but now he's pushing for the numbers and to get them requires A LOT of networking. I love connecting with people but I don't necessarily care about optimizing my site and my SEO right now. I just want genuine interaction. We came to an agreement though that he can handle the marketing and I'll just handle the writing!
    Anyway, that's not why I was commenting to begin with. I wanted to let you know that I nominated you for the 2018 Liebster Award. I know you're not an entirely new blogger but I wanted to recognize your content and what you've achieved.

    You can see my post on the Liebster Award and what it's all about here http://www.livinglifelovingus.com/index.php/2018/04/26/living-life-loving-us-i-was-nominated-for-the-liebster-award/
    Keep up the great work!

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    1. Hey Jenny! That's so cool that your husband is so supportive. Glad you're enjoying blogging so far, it really is amazing. Oh and thanks so much for the award :)

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  12. Oh yes, I see many for who blogging is about numbers. I understand when you have a business that it needs to be too. But as you say it becomes a nightmare if this is all you can focus on. I think the most important thing is staying true to yourself. For the reason that I think blogging will cause so much anxiety, and fear if the numbers are all that counts. I also sadly think that people step out of their authenticity when that happens. It's because of that outside focus that constantly spins the mind. I hope I never reach that point ever. For now it's just fun, and no business for me
    Wonderful post Nicola xx
    www.rainbowsdreamcloud.com

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    1. You're right, it's sad when people think numbers are all that count and stop being authentic because of it, just to get more followers. It's great that you're just blogging for fun - sometimes worrying about the business side of things takes all the enjoyment out of it!

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