BLOGGING: THE RELATABLE VS THE INSPIRATIONAL
The truth is, I’m very often conflicted when it comes down to defining my own identity online. Who do I want to be? What impression do I want to give? Do I want people to feel connected to me through my writing, or through my photos? The difficulty lies in the fact that I obviously want both, and I imagine that reading this, you might be thinking, “well then just aim for both, duh”. Of course, it’s never really that easy.
Last week, I had a bit of an epiphany. I say a bit, I mean a maaaaasive epiphany that I think will change my blogging journey dramatically - hopefully for the better. It hit me, pretty hard, that I've spent the past 9 months or so trying to fit into a cookie-cutter mould of what a blogger 'should be'. Whereas, in reality, that's not who I am at all.
The problem about being an 'influencer' is that you have to figure out your direction pretty darn quickly. If you’re known to your readers for one thing, as soon as you start to move into another direction, your audience can become a bit pissed off. Suddenly you’re no longer relatable to them – you’re not providing what you unintentionally promised and your change of direction almost feels like an insult. Obviously that's not ideal.
The more time I spend online, the more obvious it is that there are definitely two types of bloggers in the sphere; the relatable and the inspirational. Both have their place but both are very very different. The relatable is the internet’s big sister; brimming with invaluable life advice, honesty and a witty sense of humour. Relatable confesses to buying half her wardrobe in Primark, indulging in a whole bucket of KFC chicken on a Friday night, and well, relatable is the girl you feel you know without having ever met her. At the complete other end of the spectrum, the aspirational is the #bodygoals, designer lusting and drone-flying Maldives touring one. Aspirational has the perfect tan, the perfect hair, the perfect home – she is the girl you think you want to be.
I'm going to be brutally honest here. I think I started this blog with the aim to transform myself into the inspirational kind of blogger; I bought my first designer handbag, mentally planned a load of luxurious holidays and hoped to nab myself an #instagramhubby. However, in reality, that's definitely not me at all. Case outlined below in my head-to-toe high-street outfit.
jacket - forever 21
DRESS - NEW LOOK
BOOTS - ZARA
Instagram feeds are so impeccably curated and refined that it's become a place not of reality, but of fantasy instead. Personally, as a viewer, I'd way rather see my favourite influencer slobbing around on the sofa talking about their latest binge addiction on Netflix, than I would see her harping on about the 8th 5* resort she's stayed in so far that year. Major eye roll. Sure, there were times where I used to go all goo goo gaga over the sneak peaks into the lives of those that are infinitely more richer, and cooler, than me but there's now just so much of it online that it's all became a little bit over-saturated.
I know never to say never, but I very much doubt that I will ever be the kind of girl to hang off the back of a private yacht, rocking a teeeeeeny designer bikini showcasing my svelte tanned body whilst sipping on Dom Perignon. Mainly because I love food too much - and that is a-okay for me.
I had a really brilliant meeting today with the lovely Anna from Anna Caroneo and she very very kindly voiced that she found me really relatable as an online 'influencer'. It genuinely put the biggest smile on my face. I absolutely adore that not only my followers, but also now brands are recognising how hard I aim to be myself online. I don't shy away from writing controversial blog posts and I try and write and convey things in a way that I would if we were to be having a glass of wine at the local pub. The sort of content where hopefully people will shout at their screens OH MY GADDDD THAT IS SO ME!!!
Don't get me wrong, I know there's a balance that's required but I aim to continue being relatable and approachable to you all. I am all kinds of human and am not always immaculately dressed, living on a diet solely consisting of avocado, kale, and expensive lattes.