Performancing Metrics

Are Bloggers Feeling the Crunch?

Stocks values are falling. Big investment banks are filing for bankruptcy. A colleague on the Blog Herald recently wrote a piece on how blogs are weathering the economic crunch that’s being felt worldwide today. Easton Ellsworth writes:

The key lesson for blog networks and solo blogs alike in this time of possible recession may be this: Develop quick reflexes or perish. As McCord says, “In every good business, there comes a time when pruning is necessary.”

What do you think? How can blog networks and professional bloggers succeed in a struggling economy?

For most people who don’t blog for profit or income, perhaps they don’t directly feel the effects of the crunch on their blogging activities. But for us who are in the business of blogging, we would inevitably feel some effect sooner or later. Blog networks, being business entities, would most likely face some decline in earnings. But how about individual bloggers?

For bloggers who earn directly from advertising revenue and sponsorships, the worry here is that advertisers would cut back on their online ad spending. So whether it’s for directly-sold sponsorship spots or revenue shares in ad networks, there could be a decline in earnings.

For bloggers who work for blog networks, meanwhile, the big worry is job security. With the fear of blog networks folding up, the future might be bleak. Or at least with some blog networks restructuring their pay schemes, the question is whether this would turn out to be beneficial or not. Bloggers who perform well might find this a better proposition, but those whose blogs aren’t exactly popular might not.

In my view, though, blogs and blog networks are better able to weather economic declines compared to other businesses. For one, the overhead is small. Unlike brick and mortar establishments, we don’t have to pay any lease or rent for office space, office utility bills, and costs for other administrative work. Yes, we do spend for hosting, domains, electricity, design and development, and even equipment. And of course, for the moneyed networks, acquisition of online properties. But that’s as far as overhead goes. I would say that much of our expenditure is on creative staff, and hopefully the good output is there!

But still, the effect remains to be seen. Will we feel the crunch? If not directly, then perhaps indirectly–with rising costs of living and such. So Easton’s advice to develop quick reflexes makes perfect sense.

New media is ever-changing. So bloggers’ and blog networks’ ability to change and shift focus quickly should be quick enough.

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Comments

  1. Easton Ellsworth says: 9/17/2008

    Thanks Angelo. Great thoughts. Very true about how blogs typically have low overhead so the potential to adapt may be higher than with offline businesses.

    It also takes humility for a blogger to say, “You know what? This way isn’t working well. I need to do a 180 right now.” A lot of bloggers treat their blogs like they’re static and can’t change in nature. Not true. You can relaunch, rename, redo anytime.

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