For as long as my memory serves I have wanted to create content. Designing magazines, books, blogging, videos, photography, the lot. I didn't know then why I loved magazines so much, the feel of a fresh magazine, the layout, design, fonts, colours and images were just the best form of art to me. A magazine editor quickly became the chosen career for me because the only thing better than buying magazines is being the boss lady who makes all of the editorial decisions.
A few years ago I found a new way to produce and execute content and that is A Seat With Shay, it allows me to create endless content to my hearts desire and I get to make the rules. As easy as blogging looks, it isn't. It's time consuming and it can be as hectic as a full-time job if you want it to be. Content creators who create content about themselves wear many hats, we are the stylist, the PR, the art director, the editor, the MUA, web designer, writer and more.
So if you were in my shoes, after making all of these content decisions do you create content that fills your heart with joy? Create content that fills your audiences heart with joy or create content that will fill your bank account with joy. Let's talk about content creators staying true to themselves or chasing the money.
This new social media age has allowed space for those who aren't necessarily passionate about creating content the space to do it and excel. All of the micro bloggers are creating copycat content and it is seen as an easy way to make money. Do you love making YouTube videos or did you just see a new home tour from your favourite YouTuber and want to imitate their income?
CREATING CONTENT ABOUT OURSELVES IS THE NEW LIFESTYLE MAGAZINE.
Just like all media based careers content creation changes and evolves daily, which is great for us consumers because I would get a little bored of 30 years of lyric prank videos. When we enjoy a certain type of content from someone it can be hard to accept it when they make a change in content because if it isn't broke why fix it, right?
As a content creator you have to decide if you want to create content for yourself, content for your followers or trendy content.
Creating content for yourself is amazing, it's probably a bit easier to stick to this when you are just creating as a hobby. I mean if someone likes creating cleaning vlogs and cleaning blog posts and finds joy doing that, then that's amazing. But what about after 2 years of cleaning videos, maybe your followers feel like your content is getting repetitive or your views aren't as high as they used to be. If social media isn't career based for you, then you have no problem but it gets tricky when you rely on it for financial reasons.
Creating content for your followers is great because you'll see what they respond to and what they like and make videos accordingly. I'm sure you'll enjoy some content more than others but overall both you and your followers will be relatively happy. But there will come a time when you see new trendy videos that aren't necessarily relevant to your content but you know it will result in crazy views. If you try the 'new trend' the views will be insane resulting in more revenue and more subscribers. But your loyal subscribers may become confused by your content and your brand may start looking a little questionable.
Creating trendy content may be fun and unpredictable keeping you excited and engaged in your content. However your followers may lose interest quickly when your content is all over the place. I would personally prefer 1,000 loyal followers who know and love my content as opposed to 5K who are watching it because the videos are trendy and sparked an interest at the time, who knows when they'll hit that unfollow button?
So what are the rules of being a content creator in 2018? Are we supposed to stick to our own loves or are we supposed to focus on making a coin?
Well I like to think about it like this. There are musicians who make music for the fans and there are musicians who make music for the love of music and neither one are any less of a musician. As I write this blog post, Patricia Bright comes to mind, while we're talking about Patricia can we just show some appreciation for her amazing work ethic this year. She has written a book, created her own lipstick with MAC, been consistent AF on YouTube, did a TED talk and was on the cover of Glamour magazine, I CANNAHH!
Anyway Patricia's YouTube videos have changed in the past year and I must say I have been watching less and less of them. I was a fan of her sit down chatty videos, lifestyle vlogs, business/life advice videos etc. but I am not mad at her at all. Her views have sky rocketed and she has found her new niche, her channel has recently been very on trend, fashion, beauty and review heavy. I think she is doing amazing and it is ok to A. Switch up your content to how you see fit, especially it impacts your finances and B. Still support someone even though their content isn't 100% your style. I do still watch her vids from time to time because how can I not witness her quest to achieve LIME GREEN HAIR?!
The main thing for an engaged audience is transparency. If I'm watching someone who creates trendy content it's because that's how they portray themselves and I know the person behind the trend but if I am watching a stay at home mum who hates challenges and she starts creating challenge videos for more views I'm going to question your character #justsaying.
I label myself as a lifestyle blogger, we chat about love, fashion, blog advice and mental health on this blog and I love having no filter on the subjects I want to divulge in to. For now the content I create is a strong balance of for myself and for my readers which makes me happy, maybe when I am fully on YouTube again I will do more trendy topics because they're fun and only last a couple of months. I follow creators for many different reasons, some for their on trend topics, others for their high quality content and some for their amazing personality so there really are no rules on what you should focus on as a content creator.
In a nutshell I think you can find happiness in creating content that also makes your followers happy and if it results in a coin then it's a win win. Of course it's easier for me to have this view point as opposed to full-time YouTubers/Bloggers trying to keep up with the moving media and make as much money as they can. As long as it doesn't go against your moral compass, creating content for the coin is completely understandable.
One of my first business emails forced me to decide if I was going to be a reliable blogger who stays true to herself or a flat tummy tea blogger. I will say that I am careful about the brands I collaborate with and I like to be as open as possible about collaborations. Brands have regularly asked me to work on a sponsored post but have asked me to not to declare it as such. I always tell them that I declare every sponsored post with an asterisk(*) out of duty and loyalty to my readers #I'veGotYourBack. So about that collab email for some kind of flat tummy tea business, let me just say this, I have a 15 year old sister and the day will never come when she see's her sister online selling FAKE TUMMY TEA. We drink green tea, work out and eat our greens in this house baby girl.
On that note, I would love to hear your thoughts on the rules of creating content. Do you think content creators are allowed to switch up when it comes to making money or should they stay true to their original content and followers? How much would you request to promote a 'weight loss lollypop'?
Location: Princess Andriana Resort and Spa, Rhodes, Greece.