Before I start my fifth and final guest blogging post, I want to thank the editors of Metromode for allowing me my 15 minutes of fame. Many thanks as well go out to the readers and to those who commented.
A Huge Network of Mom Bloggers
In my fourth post “Isolated? Not so much” among the topics I broached, was how work-at-home professionals have opportunities online for socializing and networking. Among those opportunities is blogging, and it probably seems that today, everybody has a blog (or two or three)—especially moms. Lately, the media has been all over mom bloggers (or mommy bloggers, for those who prefer the cutesy term), suddenly realizing the powerful role of women networking with one another, sharing and sometimes commiserating.
Not that this women networking is anything new, it’s now, however that big business has figured out that we are a profitable demographic. Women have been networking verbally for centuries, whether it was at the laundry hole, in a posh and lavish tea room or on a 1950’s party line. Now, we have the Internet, and can do so with an even larger audience, broadening the boundaries of community and our network of “friends” and simultaneously closing the gap of difference among cultures and regions—united in the fact that what is shared is parenting and motherhood. Many mom bloggers are professional writers. Other mom bloggers are not professional writers, but use their blogs as a business tool occasionally discussing family, children and husbands or partners in the context of being WAHMs. And then there are mom bloggers for whom blogging is all about the journaling aspect of documenting, chronicling and sharing their life stories.
Purpose and Platform
Regardless of which category a mom blog falls into, it is important that from the onset, the purpose of that blog is understood by the owner, and therefore her audience. (This goes for the dad blogs out there too, by the way.) Is your blog a platform for venting about kids, interactions with other parents, your spouse or partner? Is your blog about issues that you’re passionate about, with the occasional weaving in of family-related stories and anecdotes? Is your blog about your business, with very little discussion about anything related to family outside of how family might relate to your business? While blogs can grow, evolve and the purpose shift, these are the questions to consider. Why are your readers coming back? Is it for a voyeuristic peek into your life? To learn something? To share experiences and get validation? Or something else entirely?
An Offspring of Feminism
The Mom Blog, regardless of its purpose or platform, their large market share is a sign of the powerful voices of women—not just as women, but as bloggers. With a large portion of mom-bloggers either being WAHMs or SAHMs, the prevalence of mom blogs shows that the flexibility and ability to choose to work from home (or stay at home) is not only due to technology, but also is a logical offspring of feminism. Many of us grew up learning that we could do and be anything that we wanted, and that our choices were ours to own. And with that, we sought different models of working, living, parenting and approaching relationships. Mom bloggers are, on the whole, a collective of outspoken women, powerful in the sense that they have embraced and owned technology (once the locus of male-dominated expertise), and are using it to validate, empower and enrich the lives of others, regardless of whether that is the taciturn intention or not. And Big Business has caught on, as the Today Show reported in early May. The comment the article makes about "word of mouth turning moms into business women" aside, mom bloggers are voices that are being heard, even if they are simply musing.
So Who’s Musing in the Mitten?
There are some noteworthy and well-written blogs by Michigan mamas and papas—from the MichDads Blog to I am the Mom (which does a beautiful job of integrating WAHM-related issues with family related ones), Momof3Girls, Suburban Bliss, Eco ‘Burban Mom and the parent blogs at Motor City Moms. Some are touching, others edgy and there are way too many to list … and those are just the some that I know of. Enjoy the diversions.