With the excitement of Threads already dwindling and engagement across social media feeling sluggish and slow, what can creatives do to promote themselves online? One solution might surprise you, and it doesn't involve dancing.
When it comes to potential avenues for self-promotion, we're well and truly spoilt for choice as creative professionals these days.
There's a plethora of social media platforms out there right now, all furiously vying for our attention and limited time. TikTok, Threads, LinkedIn, and YouTube all have unique advantages but are also united by one common thread: we're not in control.
From the recent, pretty bonkers Twitter refresh to the rushed roll-out of Threads to the ever-changing Instagram algorithm shifts that have made organic engagement feel like an unreachable Holy Grail these days, social media's rules keep changing, making it harder and harder to stand out on social or know which platform deserves our attention most.
That's where our own platforms and websites come in: the 'owned media' that we are firmly in control of. The time is now to invest in you. Blogging will be hugely relevant in 2023.
Your little corner of the World Wide Web
When it comes to blogging, it's safe to say that most of us are small fishes swimming around in a vast and crowded online pond. With over 600 million blogs today, it's easy to feel that blogging isn't worth the time or effort and that no one will notice your words once published. But you'd be wrong to think that.
The sheer abundance of blogs out there is actually an advantage, not a disadvantage. It's liberating. With so much noise in cyberspace comes a lovely opportunity: to be authentically you, to share your personal voice and to talk passionately about what matters most and what drives you creatively.
Designer and hand-lettering artist Lauren Hom does just that with Hom Sweet Hom, a blog that finely balances handy tips around freelancing and finding clients to design inspiration and kicking self-doubt to the curb. It's helpful, infectiously positive and gets you thinking – precisely as all blogs should.
The perfect showcase for your creative work
Your blog is uniquely yours. No one else can dictate how you choose to make use of it. As such, you have free reign to pen content and share exactly what you feel your audience needs to learn about you and your work.
For creative professionals, blogs can serve as incredible spaces to celebrate and amplify your portfolio while providing valuable behind-the-scenes insight and telling the story and journey behind your latest work.
Case in point: the Simplebits blog. Each post has personality, is beautifully creative and goes way beyond each typeface. It's a perfect example of 'less is more' – the blogs appear infrequently, but every post is well worthy of a read and, crucially, a share with others.
Rocket-boost your SEO and brand profile
There's no getting away from it as creatives: we always need to be thinking SEO, SEO, SEO.
Blogging is a proven way to boost your business' search rankings, get you onto the all-important first page of SERPs, enhance your brand profile and become seen and known as an expert and authority within a particular field. In today's world, where brevity rules and attention spans are seemingly at an all-time low, there undoubtedly remains a place for a regularly-maintained blog that's crafted with care and with its audience in mind.
HICKS.design has the right approach with its journal. Giving readers a glimpse of the creative skillset that goes into each and every one of the studio's designs, the blog is also a valuable tool in the creative partnership's marketing arsenal.
Make it personal: owned vs earned media
People still buy from people. No matter how much the world changes, they always have, and they always will. The pandemic years proved that human connection counts - and your blog is the perfect vehicle for sharing the journey of what brought you to where you are today.
Whether it's offering up some of the hard lessons learnt as a freelancer or lockdown observations that remain relevant in a post-Covid world, owned media has something very special going for it over earned media: you can tell your story how you want it to be told.
Angela Roche of Love & Logic does this sublimely with a blog jam-packed with feeling, heart and honesty. In the process, it draws you in and makes you want to know more - and that's what the best blogs are designed to do.
It's tough out there right now. Marketing budgets are becoming increasingly squeezed, social media feels ever more convoluted to navigate, and we all find ourselves with limited time to promote our work, win new business and retain existing clients. All reasons why focusing on grabbing attention with your blog should be an absolute focus for 2023 and beyond.