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Meet Guest Blogger: Katy Widrick

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Meet Guest Blogger: Katy Widrick
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SurveyMonkey: We’re excited to have Katy Widrick, fit blogger extraordinaire, share her insights and experience with us!

We healthy living bloggers are an interesting bunch. We’re mothers and single dudes; students and CEOS; vegetarians and crazy meat-eaters. Some of us are trying to lose weight while others are pillars of fitness. Many are hoping to become full-time, professional social media superstars…but few actually are.

In the spring of 2011, I embarked on a project that I hoped would help shed some light on this section of the blogosphere. It wasn’t in and of itself new — Technorati has done several State of the Blogosphere surveys and the mommy bloggers are a well-covered crew — but as far as I can tell, it was the first in-depth look at what makes healthy living bloggers tick.

So I sat down to ask the questions that I wanted answered — things like how much money we make, what platforms we use for blogging, what kind of fancy (or not-so) cameras we use, etc. What do we want out of this crazy hobby we all share? When I started my SurveyMonkey survey, I knew that I needed to cover a lot of ground in as few questions as possible.

I broke it down into what would become a series of post-survey posts on my blog, KatyWidrick.com:

I tried not to have too many preconceived notions about what the results might be — which was good, because there were some really interesting surprises!

For example:

The highest percentage of people that answered the survey responded that as of January 1, 2011, they were 26-30 years old, with the second largest group coming in at 21-25 years old. So, combined, nearly 2/3 of the respondents are between 21-30 years old.

An overwhelming amount of people who took the survey responded that they are female (94%) and 3/4 of people (about 75%) responded that they have either a bachelor’s or a master’s degree in college.

34% of respondents reported an income of between $30,000-$70,000 and half of us are married (50%) with about 40% of respondents either single or dating. A whopping 80% of respondents have no children, with the next largest number coming in at 8% of people, who report having two children.

I’ll be the first to admit that this section of the survey may not reflect the entire blogosphere, because I targeted people who identify themselves as Healthy Living and/or Fitness bloggers. But I was surprised to see that many (most?) of us blog about a variety of topics. 82% of people blog about fitness, 63% of people say that they post about cooking and recipes, and 43% of us blog about family. I’d be very interested to see if technology and social media start creeping up in the coming years!

I knew this next question would return interesting results — I asked people to report whether they blog for fun, for business or for fun and business. These days, many of us are either making money from our blogs (making them businesses of their own) or we’re honing our skills at writing and social media while on the job, making those tasks part of our official job descriptions.

But not one person reported blogging for business only. Cool, huh?

The biggest number of people (28%) post two to three times a week, followed by four to six times a week (25%). Only 7% of you post more than once a day.

30% of respondents said they spend 1-3 hours a week on their blogs, and another 30% spend 4-6 hours a week. There’s no easy or scientific way, given the questions that I asked, to figure out how long the average blogger spends on an individual post, but that might be an interesting line of questions for the next version of the survey!

When it comes to making money — only about a quarter of people (28%) do (even a small amount):

But most of the respondents — 74% — want to make money.

53% of respondents — only a little more than half — say they regularly measure analytics at all. An additional 22% say that they sometimes track analytics.

For those that do measure analytics, they seem to be most interested in page views (66%) and comments (58%).

40% of survey takers — making the largest response — say that their blog gets between 501 and 5,000 page views a month.

(There are some REALLY interesting write-in responses that I shared in the series, featuring the ways that people measure their blog that do NOT have anything to do with traditional statistics!)

In a question that always makes me think of the “I’m a Mac. I’m a PC.” commercials…it turns out we as a group are, in fact, PCs. And laptops, to boot (hee hee, see what I did there? to boot?). 44% of people that responded use PC laptops, followed by 35% who use Mac laptops:

When it comes to what platforms we use…things get really interesting. WordPress.org (self-hosted) JUST eeks out a majority (34%) but it’s quickly followed by Blogger (33%) and WordPress.com (30%). Only a small percentage of healthy living bloggers use other platforms.

58% of people own your own domain, while the rest of them either don’t or don’t want to say (or skipped the question, those slackers).

92% of the people who responded to the survey are on Twitter. That’s not a huge shock, but it does make me wish I’d done the same survey 5 years ago — the numbers would have been very different! 83% use Twitter to promote their blog or blogs. But (and this surprised me!) the majority only have one Twitter account (75%).

97% of people who responded are on Facebook. SHOCKINGLY — of the people who are on Facebook, only about half (53%) use it to promote your blog.

85% of you consider themselves to be lifecasters, which means that the primary focus of their blogs is sharing what they do all day.

61% of respondents reveal their names on their blogs, but only the first name. 28% share their full names.

Want to learn more about this group of bloggers? You can see the complete series, “Bloggers in Depth” on my blog (http://katywidrick.com/category/bloggers-in-depth/). I have a new survey coming out in the fall of 2011, focused on how bloggers are monetizing their work — so stay tuned for more fun results!

About Katy

Katy Widrick is a television producer by day, and trains for triathlons at night. She writes about healthy living in a hectic world — a balance between fitness and friendships, all built through social media, and is also the founder of the #Fitblog Chats on Twitter. Subscribe to the feed for updates and follow @kwidrick on Twitter!

 

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