Hey everyone, it’s Kern here, and it’s about time I sit down and write out a few thoughts that have been on my mind for a while. I love anime, and I love video games. I wouldn’t be spearheading this blog if I didn’t, but it isn’t all sunshine and roses, either. While I’ll be the first to say a lot of good can come out of blogging, I’ll also be the first to tell you that it is an uphill grind if you’re trying to make that blog profitable.
I’m a big fan of blogging in general, but blogging isn’t for everyone.
I’ve decided I’d highlight the pros and cons of blogging about anime and gaming to help you determine if it is the right fit for you. First though, we should talk about what a blog is, and why you might consider writing one.
What is Blogging?
If you want the “big media marketing” answer, it goes a little something like this: a blog is written media that is used to help people interact and learn, trading information based on real-life experiences and data. Blogs are used to help others make a better purchasing decision, or to simply learn something new. While none of that is entirely wrong, I wouldn’t say that’s the main crux of an anime or gaming blog.
Blogging is more than that when we’re talking about hobbies, games and other types of media. For anime and gaming fans, blogging isn’t always about selling something. Sure, it can be about that. More often though, in fandom related spaces, it is about sharing the love of those mediums.
We do this in several ways, from writing reviews and rants, to simply getting the word out about a series we really care about.
So, who should be a blogger?
Anyone who wants to do it, should do it. The baseline to beginner blogging is incredibly low. All you need is a way to write the blog, a site to write upon (even a free one), and a willingness to learn the craft. Sadly, that also means learning to roll with the punches when you’ve got to learn something new.
So, who shouldn’t be a blogger?
Anyone who isn’t motivated to face just a little bit of a struggle. Anyone who thinks it’ll be easy to just skyrocket to the top of google searches and pump out content will be disappointed. Blogging is more complicated than that. Some people will hit the jackpot sure enough. A small number will luck out and trend quickly… but most of us won’t.
The vast majority of us have to do the grind. While the baseline to entry is low, the learning curve to become a blog that earns an income will actually be fairly steep. It isn’t as easy as it looks. Blogging is pretty straightforward, but that doesn’t mean you can be lazy. There is a lot to learn.
Check out this post about my work area.
A Perfect Workspace? Ha, Yeah Right…
A common and flat out stupid misconception is that all bloggers have a perfect workspace, neat and tidy all the time. This…
Blogging Pros and Cons
If you’ve made it this far, you probably want to weigh out your options. Maybe you just want to see what you might be up against. Maybe you already have a blog, and you’ve come here looking for advice. Either way, you’ll find something useful.
I’m going to take a look at blogging from a few key points of view:
- Early Opportunities and Possible Income
- Life Balance and Time Management
- Communication and Networking
- Other Perspectives
- Skills You Need
With that being said, let’s jump into the good things about blogging, there’s a decent number to consider.
Pros of Anime and Gaming Blogs.
Blogging, in general, is a gateway used to share content that we enjoy. Each blogger has their own methods. One great thing about blogging is that as a written craft, it can be very fluid. We all have our own writing style, and cadences that we develop across sentence structure. Readers do learn to identify our brand with our particular style.
At the end of the day, it is a way for us to get our voices out there. There are a few perks for those that write blogs, and someone willing to work for the rewards will end up reaping a few benefits.
1. Earning a Living.
For those that just want to use the blogging format as a hobby, you’re in luck. You don’t have to be perfect to simply enjoy the pure power of the written word. For someone who just loves the craft, there’s just not a lot of downsides. Actually there are more good qualities than bad ones. Provided your content can be considered “workplace friendly” then go ahead and put your hobbyist blog onto your CV or resume. It doesn’t matter if it has nothing to do with your particular line of work, if you’re young, use that to your advantage.
I’ll be blunt. Any business with half a brain knows that blogging, social media and proper networking help to make brands more reputable. It also makes you look more reputable if you have a blog about your hobbies that you’ve cultivated slowly over time. If you aren’t going to university, you need every advantage. Even if you only have a small following, this gives you a social media presence as well. Employers like to do background checks anyway.
Bottom line for hobbyist bloggers; give them a bone to chew and a paper trail to follow. Allow your blog to uplift you as a person and you’ll be ahead of the game.
On the flip side, for those who do want to see an income in this medium, it’ll take time and effort. Building a name that can be trusted and learning the nuances of the blogging sphere isn’t a quick thing to do. With blogging, your income is entirely driven by your ability to promote your content and grow your brand. This is what we call “brand awareness”.
If people know of your brand, you’ll be more likely to build an audience and maintain it.
To make money blogging within fan based mediums, you’ve got to find more than just your niche. You’ve got to find your passion and drive that forward in your written word. Even so, yes, there is money to be made as an anime and gaming blogger.
Monetizing your blog can come in all kinds of forms, from affiliate links to advertising traffic. At the time of this post, we don’t use advertising traffic here on The Demented Ferrets just yet. However, it is something we may look into going forward, when the time is right.
You can work on commission based requests once you get your name out there. Beyond that, you can set up further methods like we do here on The Demented Ferrets using other methods such as PayPal and Patreon.
Early on, you may only see pocket change. In this often difficult economy every little bit helps, and it does add up over time. Put those small earnings into savings and let it build up. If you’re wise about it, playing the monetary long-game isn’t a bad thing.
2. Low Monetary Cost.
The reality is, you can start a blog for free on many platforms. With the rise of Medium, it has never been easier to test out blogging for yourself. Plenty of anime and gaming related bloggers find themselves a nice corner of the internet by starting up on Medium and networking out from there. For those who see blogging as merely a hobby, or those looking to put a blog onto a CV or resume, using free platforms like Medium will suit you just fine.
However, if you’re truly invested in starting your own blog, I’d suggest going the paid route and making your own. This will allow you to start a reputable brand image and begin to build the trust you’ll need to eventually get earnings. If an income is what you’re after, you need a brand to stand by.
Building a reputation is fundamentally important. For some of us, that can be a long road, it behooves you to start early and be consistent.
There is some more good news too, hosting is pretty affordable. If you take your time to look into the right hosting providers and site builders, you’re halfway there. You’ll be able to get yourself a blog without breaking the bank.
Remember, if you’re a beginner, you don’t need to break the bank with all the bells and whistles. You can take your time to learn what you’re doing. In light of this, WordPress.com recently reverted back to their old pricing model after their little experiment went awry. They’ve got some affordable price points again, and other places do too… look around and choose the one best for you.
Remember, as a newbie, slow and steady wins the race.
Check out This Blog post on Readability and “The Reading Ease Ideal”.
The First Thing Bloggers Need to Know – Readability
I’m not writing this to get your attention, I’m writing this because I’m going to tell you the truth. You’ll follow me of your own volition, or you won’t. If…
3. Blogging is a Platform.
Blogging is your chance to have a voice. You can reach out to the wider world and meet all kinds of people by blogging. With time and the desire to interact with others, you’ll find plenty of other people with like-minded interests. When it comes to fandom related content such as anime and gaming, we’re a wide and diverse community, people of all walks of life find their place to belong.
People who blog about anime and gaming, typically love anime and gaming. We’re passionate about these hobbies, and we like to share that with others.
These days, people use big buzzwords like “influencers”, “Instagram models” and “Tiktok stars”. That’s fine, and people earn a living that way too, sure enough. These are all platforms, right along with YouTube, Twitch, Twitter, Facebook and countless others…
It’s easy to forget these days that blogging is a platform too, and that bloggers have our own communities and circles of friends, just like people on other platforms. I’m not always as outspoken in my personal online circle as I should be, but I do the best I can…
Shout-out to Iridium Eye Reviews who is also a variety blogger with anime and movie reviews. Go check them out. Did you know that I once wrote an open letter to him regarding blogging and some of the struggles that bloggers often share in common?
If you’re new to blogging, or just having a hard time as a blogger, go ahead and check out my open letter.
An Open Letter to Iridium Eye and Readers – This is the Truth about Blogging.
Hey everyone, it’s Kernook here and this is a more serious, introspective post that directly references this one here, written by Ospreyshire. The title? “Top 7 Concerns I Have As a Film…
The key point I want you to know is that blogging is a journey. The communities we join really matter to us. We often lift up fellow bloggers when we can, because back-linking those of like minds and content often share communities and readers. It’s important to network this way, and it usually feels pretty good too.
As bloggers, we often come across some pretty cool anime and games that way too… bloggers tend to be readers of other blogs, so discovering new content is always a blast.
4. Blogging is Fun.
Blogging is a creative medium. If you have something to say, then blogging gives you the ability to say it. Many gaming and anime bloggers are purely in it for the hobby of blogging, no matter how big they get. A lot of us just like to do it, and if it goes somewhere, that’s awesome. If it doesn’t, then for a lot of people, that’s no big deal either… we do it because we love it.
Working on our mastery of the craft, namely the power of the written word, is part of the fun. Talking about the hobbies and interests we have can be fulfilling enough on its own. For many of us, that’s reason enough to do it.
A great example of this can be seen by a great anime reviewer known as Irina Watches Anime, who has stated more than once that her blog is only a hobby. She cares for her blog deeply, but it will always just be a hobby for her… and I really respect that.
Guest bloggers share content too from time to time on her blog too, and that’s just another way bloggers help to support and uplift each other. Collaboration and networking really is a key part of being successful no matter what kind of blogger you happen to be.
The Cons of Anime and Gaming Blogs.
You knew this was coming, blogging isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. For as great as blogging is, no matter how much I do love it, there are some downsides. For every good reason to work hard on your blog, there are some reasons you may decide blogging just isn’t for you.
1. Time and Effort
To have a large blog with lots of readers, it takes time and a fair bit of effort. When it comes to anime and gaming, this is particularly true. No matter what kind of blogger you are, this is a somewhat saturated market to get into. That means you’ll have to devote your time to just being noticed.
While the barrier to entry can be incredibly low, the barrier to long standing success is actually fairly high. It continues to get higher by the day. I don’t say that to intimidate you, I say that as a blogger making the up-hill climb personally.
This particular blog is still working its way up the ladder to something completely sustainable. Here on The Demented Ferrets we’re “middling” bloggers. We’re not super popular, we’re not bottom of the barrel. We have a decent and dedicated reader base, and we’re still growing… but we’re not paying all the bills in our homes with this website… not yet.
To be entirely transparent, at the time of this post, we do pay for the website with our earnings and we have a bit of pocket change thanks to our Patreon supporters and other donations. However, we haven’t put all of our eggs into one basket, and you shouldn’t either… not at first.
We also have plans for forward growth and momentum, but we understand that takes time. We all still have day jobs and stream on Twitch as well. From a purely blogging perspective though, it hcan be a lot of hard work. Here’s just a few things that need to be done on a regular basis:
- Keeping abreast of blogging trends within my niche.
- Contacting others/networking
- Topic and planning and scheduling
- Writing posts like this one
- Creating new forms of content and collecting the right materials to do that effectively
- Managing social media
- Routine keyword research
- Updating old posts when required
- Several other mundane but required tasks.
Keep in mind, The Demented Ferrets has a blog with topics revolving around anime and gaming. If I’m doing an anime or movie review, I have to watch the series. If I do a game review, I have to play the game. That’s time consuming, but it is required. I’m not even the best gamer out there, as our Twitch channel so often proves. It helps very little when my cat, Sabin, decides to complicate matters even further.
In any case, blogging is a time investment. It isn’t a “get rich quick” scheme. It’s not a hard and fast solution to all of your monetary woes. I’d say this goes double in the anime and gaming sphere. You’ve got to get into it because you want to get into it, not for any other reason.
2. Significant Amounts of Patience and Persistence
This ties into point number one, but it needs to be its own separate category. Look, I won’t mince words, blogging can be very emotionally draining. If you don’t love it, you won’t be able to commit to all of the things you need to know. Blogging has its own lingo and skill sets that you need to learn.
As an anime or gaming blogger, that gets just a little bit more difficult. We need to know all about the anime and games we write about, and these are two very diverse mediums. I’m going to be honest, the grind is real, and it can be a very good way to snap your resolve as a blogger.
If you expect too much of yourself too soon, you will burn out… and it’s not just writing the blogs, either.
The games you play have their own barrier of entry too. Thanks to exclusivity deals, another barrier is in front of you by default. Your general ability to play and beat a game will be a barrier too. You’ll have to manage your expectations effectively. You need the proper technology to play the game, and that’s an investment in itself sometimes. Then you need to at least play enough of the game to adequately come to a determination on how to properly review the title.
With some games being incredibly long, that alone is a time investment. That’s not even considering the blog post you’ll have to prepare after you’ve played it.
For example, for our play through of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time it took Ebby almost 24 hours of gameplay footage to do a 100% run…. and that’s just the footage we edited down. That wasn’t even the blog post or video editing that came along with it.
Check out our gameplay post of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Gameplay: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Hey everyone, it’s time for another set of gameplay videos. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time probably doesn’t need an introduction, chances are good that you’ve heard of it. The game was first released on the Nintendo 64 back…
Anime, movies and television shows have a similar issue. With streaming services snapping up exclusive licenses left and right, watching certain titles legally can sometimes be a pain in the behind. When you take into consideration the “Netflix” binge model, you may as well kiss away an entire afternoon just to watch the series when it comes out… that can take away time from other meaningful things.
It’s easy to find yourself sucked into a void as a blogger. I’d say that gaming and anime have their own occasionally insidious practices. Frankly, blogging does too. These issues can, and sometimes do, build up… it can be a stressful situation, and some people just can’t take the heat.
I love being an anime and gaming fan, I do. It’s great to meet new people and share experiences. It can be a lot of fun, I pointed that out directly in this post a little while ago. However, fandom like all things, has a dark side. There are times that a fandom might argue or turn on each other, and this is the internet.
It is very easy to lose sight of our own personal experiences and thus, lose sight of the power that these mediums hold… but just as those mediums compel us to write about them, they compel others to feel something just as valuable on a personal level. We can’t forget that.
Fans are simply fans because they feel connected to the things they care about. Their reasons are their own, just as our reasons are our own. Gaming and anime fandom have a distinctive “gate keeping” mentality on occasion, and no matter what your stance on that is, it isn’t going to go away any time soon.
The fact is, when we care deeply about something, it can hurt to feel invalidated by the opinion of another. Readers sometimes lash out and leave nasty comments, that’s a fact. All bloggers that talk about beloved media get a few not-so-nice comments on occasion.
If you blog for long enough, and share your personal opinions about anime or gaming commonly enough, there’s going to be someone out there who will disagree with you. People have bad days, and sometimes they take that out in comment sections.
Occasionally, seeing an opinion that’s harsh upon a thing they’re a fan of, truly is the last straw… and they may not offer constructive criticism in return.
Sometimes, you’ll get a very angry commentator that says some very nasty things… and you will have to deal with that. I’m sorry if this has happened to you, it has happened to me too… and as a blogger, eventually it will happen to all of us. I would say that all bloggers that discuss fandom related topics need to have thick emotional skin, but it isn’t just about that….
It’s about understanding that fandom is a powerful tool, and respecting that tool is part of being an anime or gaming blogger. We are the ones putting ourselves out there, and that’s a hard thing to do sometimes.
My Conclusions About Anime and Gaming Blogs.
Blogging is a journey. You will learn more about yourself, and the content you enjoy. It’ll give you something to really sink your teeth into. It’ll forge your outlook on the things you write about. Creatively, you’ll learn to be a wordsmith, cultivating and creating your own content for the world to see.
Does that mean blogging is for everyone? No, absolutely not.
Gaming and anime blogging requires a rich and diverse set of skills that aren’t exactly inherent to blogging directly. Both of these kinds of media can be a bit exclusionary too, simply by default. Blogging may be cheap, but gaming and anime aren’t always cheap hobbies. Streaming services and exclusivity deals certainly make that just a tad more difficult on occasion.
Anime and gaming fandom have an ebb and flow that can certainly become complicated the moment that a scandal in the industry arises. Crunch times and poor working conditions can cause fandom to run amok. Sometimes they fight among themselves, or aim that frustration outward. Series that are products of a bygone era may be problematic these days, and those are just the surface level concerns to be aware of… does that mean I’m going to discourage you from being a blogger?
No, I’m not… I’m going to do the opposite.
If you’ve read all of that and you still want to be a blogger, then it may be the right choice for you. I think blogging is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have, because it can teach you so much about yourself… if you want to start up a blog, you owe it to yourself to give it a try.
However, I also think blogging is a challenge. There are times when it can be difficult, and times when you’ll need to puzzle out a problem or educate yourself on something you don’t know.
There’s not really anyone to hold your hand. Unless you know a blogger personally, you’ll be doing a lot of research. Even once you get into contact with fellow bloggers, we don’t always have the answers you might need. We all have our own tactics and methods to this madness, with time, you will too…
I hope this has been at least some help to you, and I wish you luck on your blogging endeavors.
This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at it’s finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll catch you next time. Don’t forget to follow the blog for more content.
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