In your efforts to market and promote your business. You may have considered starting a blog or a vlog. To raise the profile of your business, attract more clients or customers, and enhance awareness. But what exactly is the difference between blogging and vlogging, and which one is right for your business? In this article, we will discuss blogging vs vlogging. The differences, advantages, and disadvantages of each, and various metrics related to both so that you can decide which one is best for promoting your business (or if you should do both).
What is blogging?
Blogging, which is a truncated verb form of weblog or weblogging. Refers to the practice of creating online journal entries or informational website entries which display in the reverse chronological order of when each entry was posted (the latest blogs or posts appear first). Blogging allows a writer or a number of writers to offer their views on a particular subject.
There is a wide range of blogs regarding just about every topic imaginable, such as business, fashion, cars, IT, video games, healthcare, food, clothing, fishing, etc. If it is a subject of human interest, then there is likely a blog out there that covers it.
Blogs oftentimes include a “subscribe” feature, which allows the reader to subscribe to the blog and receive notifications when new posts or updates are made to the blog.
What is vlogging?
Vlogging, which is a shortened form of video blogging or video logging, refers to the practice of creating a blog entry using video as the medium, known as a vlog entry. Basically, a blog involves mainly written content, while a vlog involves video content. A vlog will generally contain embedded video or a link to a video and may also contain supporting images, text, or other such metadata. A vlog entry might be recorded in a single take or be split into multiple parts.
Vlogging generally consists of a vlogger looking and speaking directly into the camera and documenting a portion of his or her day, daily routine, experiences, or thoughts on a particular subject.
There are also myriad vlogs available on a wide range of subjects. Especially since the video format lends itself well to “how-to” videos and the like. Making vlogs a natural platform for talking about makeup, travel, fashion, clothing, design, technology, sports, and various other subjects which may benefit from the visual nature of a vlog. A popular form of vlog is one that does not revolve around a particular subject but instead follows the life or the daily routine of the vlogger.
The most popular platform for vlogging is the video-sharing website YouTube. YouTube also allows the viewers of a vlog to subscribe to a vlog so that they can be notified when further videos are posted by the vlogger to whom they have subscribed.
Blogging vs Vlogging: Popularity over the years
Popularity of Blogging
Blogging has come a long way since the first blog was created in 1994 by a Swarthmore College student named Justin Hall. The word weblog wasn’t even coined until 1997, and it wasn’t shorted to the word blog until 1999. In those early years, blogging platforms such as LiveJournal and Xanga began to grow in popularity. In 1999, Meg Hourihan and Evan Williams began what would later become known as Blogger, a platform that was responsible for making blogging mainstream.
Blogging grew exponentially in the early 2000s. in 1999, 23 blogs existed on the internet, according to Jesse James Garrett. But by mid 2006, the State of the Blogosphere report by Technorati showed that there were 50 million blogs in existence.
Popular blogs such as Gawker and Gizmodo, which are still widely read to this day, launched in the year 2002.
Also, in January 2005, survey data showed that blogs were being read by 32 million Americans, which was over 10 percent of all Americans at the time.
Microblogs (also known as tumblogs), which are short pieces of content intended to draw quick reactions from their audiences, also got their start in the mid to late 2000s, with Twitter being introduced in 2006 and Tumblr being released in 2007.
By the end of the year 2013, there were more than 152 million blogs active on the internet. And there were 28.3 million bloggers active by 2015. In 2020, the number of active bloggers has reached more than 31 million. And there are more than 600 million blogs on the internet today. With more than two billion blog posts being published each year. Which breaks down to more than 5 million blog posts being published each day and more than four thousand being published every minute. Nowadays, 77% of all internet users read blogs on a regular basis,
Popularity of Vlogging
What about vlogging? In 2000, Adam Kontras generated the first vlog entry. The popularity of vlogging increased significantly in 2004, with vlogs such as Rocketboom. However, vlogs still lacked a prevailing hosting platform, and vlog entries were distributed through their creators’ individual websites as well as through email and RSS feeds.
This all changed in 2005 with the introduction of YouTube. Which quickly became the number one online video-sharing platform in the world. The website was purchased by Google in November of 2006 for 1.65 billion dollars. YouTube is now the second largest search engine as well as the second most visited website (second only to Google). Estimates of the value of YouTube vary widely, but a 2014 valuation placed it between $26 billion and $40 billion. As of 2019, its annual revenue is estimated to be $15 billion.
Nowadays, 93% of all those who watch vlog content watch it on YouTube. And in 2015, GWI reported that 42% of internet browsers watched a vlog at least once a month. By the end of 2018, it was reported that more than half (52%) of all Americans watch a vlog, and 72% of millennials watch a vlog. That equates to over 170 million Americans who watch a vlog.
The most popular vlogs among viewers usually come in the form of how-to videos and product reviews, vlogs which are more educational in nature. Other popular vlog categories include vlogs about travel, beauty, fitness, and lifestyle.
Vlogs have a fair amount of influence when it comes to product and purchasing decisions. Nearly half (44%) of those who watch vlogs have said that they search for a particular product “almost always” or “often” after learning about it on a vlog. And almost one fourth of vlog viewers say that they “often” or “almost always” buy the product after hearing about it from a vlog.
Blogging vs Vlogging: Current demographics
Two thirds (66%) of all blog content is created in the English language. Despite the fact that only 20% of the worldwide population speaks English. This may be due to the fact that a disproportionate number of bloggers are from an English-speaking country. Or because bloggers wish to reach the widest possible audience and believe that creating content in English is the best way to achieve that.
More than half of all bloggers (53.3%) are between 30 and 45 years of age. With 20.2% of bloggers being under 30, 19.4% of bloggers being aged between 46 and 60, and 7.1% of bloggers being above the age of 60.
Bloggers are split fairly evenly when it comes to gender, with women making up 50.9% and men making up 49.1% of bloggers.
Most bloggers (29.2%) operate in the United States. The second most popular country for bloggers is the United Kingdom, with 6.75% of bloggers coming from that country.
In the US, California has the most bloggers, with 14.1%, nearly double that of the next state, New York, with 7.1%.
In terms of vlogging demographics. The two factors which most correlate with the likelihood that one watches a vlog are age and race. 72% of those aged 18 to 34 report watching at least one vlog, 54% of those aged 35 to 54 watch a vlog, and 32% of those 55 or older watch a vlog.
Regarding race, 61% of black Americans watch at least one vlog, 57% of Hispanic Americans watch a vlog, and 48% of white Americans watch a vlog. Furthermore, parents are more likely to watch a vlog than those without children: 62% of parents say they watch a vlog, as opposed to 48% of those without children who watch a vlog.
Blogging vs Vlogging: Skills required
When it comes to the skills required for blogging, the obvious one that comes to mind is writing. But that is not the only skill required for bloggers today. In order to create a successful blog, it is recommended to have at least some (if not all) of the following skills:
- Content writing skills: This one is basic. If you’re going to write a blog, you should know how to write well, to convey your thoughts and ideas fluidly.
- SEO blogging skills: SEO (search engine optimization) is absolutely crucial for bloggers today. It is estimated that the first blog search result for a particular keyword will get a third (33%) of all clicks for that keyword. So SEO could not be more important.
- Photo editing skills: Blogs with images and visual content tend to be more popular than those without.
- Networking skills: Try to make connections wherever you are and show an interest in people; if you do so, they will be more likely to show an interest in you and in what you do.
- CSS and HTML skills: Knowing your way around CSS and HTML can be exceedingly helpful to the aspiring blogger. Although this may seem intimidating, platforms such as WordPress make CSS and HTML relatively simple and easy to learn.
- Social networking skills: Having a social network following can do wonders for your blog traffic results. Learn to convert traffic from your Instagram or Facebook account into traffic for your blog.
- Traffic conversion skills: If you build up a loyal following for your blog and gain your viewers’ trust, then you can begin to monetize your blog with product recommendations and the like. Don’t try to do so until your viewers trust you. Engage with your viewers to build that trust by asking questions and responding to comments. Don’t use a lot of sales jargon that will turn off your viewers.
The skills required for vlogging are similar to those required for blogging, but not exactly the same. In addition to many of the above points, you will need the following:
- Video editing skills: Learn how to use video editing software to create sharp, high quality content for your vlogs.
- Understanding of the platform: If your platform is YouTube, develop a thorough understanding of it (such as using cards, annotations, and end card programming) to direct your viewers to more of your videos or to the websites of recommended products.
- Content research skills: You should have a pretty decent understanding of what you are talking about; doing the relevant research is crucial for this.
- Social media skills: Use your social media following to generate traffic for your vlog.
Blogging vs Vlogging: Startup cost
Today, starting a blog and covering the first year of your expenses may cost you anywhere between $34.50 and $65.40. Depending on the kind of blog you are planning to start. But this doesn’t include hardware costs—if you need to buy a computer or a phone before you can start your blog. That may run you hundreds or thousands of dollars more, depending on the type of computer or phone you are buying. Since most of us probably already have the requisite computer and internet connection to start a blog. The costs will usually arise from hosting (using services like WordPress and Kinsta).
Of course, you can start and maintain a blog for free. As long as you have a computer and an internet connection. But in order for your blog to succeed, gain a decent amount of traffic, and be eventually monetizable. Using paid services will generally increase the likelihood that your blog becomes popular.
Starting a vlog as a beginner can cost you between $300 and $500. Thanks to the camera, microphone, tripod/stabilizer, and lighting equipment you may need to purchase to make a quality vlog entry. Even if you plan to make videos with only your cell phone. A phone with a good enough camera to make high quality videos will cost you, as will the internet connection required to upload it.
Blogging vs Vlogging: Income potential
81% of bloggers have never made even $100 from blogging, 17% make enough to sustain their lifestyle, and 2% make more than $150,000 through blogging.
Most bloggers earn less than $3.50 a day from blogging, but 9% make between $1,000 and $10,000 per month and 4% make more than $10,000 per month. Unfortunately, a lot of luck is involved in making money from blogging.
If your blog is lucky enough to become successful and gain a decent number of followers. You can monetize through the following:
- Advertising income
- Affiliate income
- Promoting your business
- Products like ebooks or courses
- Premium paid content
Your income as a vlogger directly corresponds to the number of views your videos get. According to a YouTube earnings estimator, videos with 20,000 views per day and an average engagement or CTR of 50% will earn you between $28.50 and $47.50 daily, with a projected yearly income of $10,403 to $17,338.
But if your video gets 116 views per day, your estimated earnings are between $0.17 and $0.28 per day and $60 and $101 per year.
The vast majority of vloggers make no money at all from their vlogs (or a very small amount). But a decent number of vloggers have been able to make enough to live on comfortably from their vlogs. And of course, like blogging, there is the tiny elite group (a very small percentage of the total) whose members make hundreds of thousands of dollars (or even millions of dollars) through their vlogs.
You can monetize a successful vlog in the following ways:
- Branded merchandise
- Contributions from viewers
Blogging vs Vlogging: Popular high income earners
Here are the top high income blogs:
- Huffington Post ($41.6 million a month)
- Engadget ($3.95 million a month)
- Moz ($3.74 million a month)
Here are the top high income vlogs:
- Ryan’s World ($26 million in 2019)
- Dude Perfect ($20 million in 2019)
- Anastasia Radzinskaya ($18 million in 2019)
- Rhett and Link ($17.5 million in 2019)
- Jeffree Star ($17 million in 2019)
- Preston ($14 million)
Blogging vs Vlogging: Advantages/Disadvantages of each
- Fairly easy to set up; does not require too much technical knowledge
- You can write your thoughts on whatever interests you
- Engage with readers through their comments on your blog
- You can become known as an expert in the subject
- New posts can be added easily
- You can gain influence and followers
- You can increase traffic to your website and grow your business
- Personal blogs can contain bias or inaccurate information
- Blogging may be quite time consuming
- Some people might leave inappropriate, rude, or mean comments
- Once a blog entry is published, all your viewers can read it; you may regret writing a blog post in anger or in too much haste
- Content that is poorly written may reflect badly on your business or product
- It’s possible that no one will read your blog
- Serves as a visual aid
- Videos are a key component of Google search results
- 63% of people say they’re more likely to buy a product if they heard about it through a video
- May cause you to stand out from the crowd
- Vlogging may be quite time consuming
- Vlogs can contain bias or inaccurate information
- Startup costs may be high, especially when investing in hardware like a camera, microphone, etc.
- Vlogs cannot be skimmed as easily as blogs
- Not suitable for all topics
Blogging vs Vlogging: Which is right for you?
Whether you want to start a blog or a vlog depends on your particular skill set, your needs, and your vision for your blog or vlog. If you are creating something to promote your business and attract customers to your website. A blog may be a more suitable platform to deliver useful information to potential customers.
But it all depends on the product and what you want to do with the vlog. If your primary purpose is entertainment, a vlog may be much more engaging and attract a following more quickly.
Blogging vs Vlogging: Can you do both?
If you have the time and the ability, you can do a combination of both blogging and vlogging. Some successful bloggers also operate a vlog (and vice versa). It all depends on what is best for your business (or what your vision for your blog/vlog is).
Blogging vs Vlogging: Takeaway
If you have the time and the ability to create high quality content and promote it effectively. Then blogging and/or vlogging can be a highly satisfactory experience. Create great content that people are actually interested in, engage with your readers/viewers, and don’t forget about SEO. Sprinkle a decent helping of luck into that equation, and you will be well on your way to creating a successful blog and/or vlog.