This is a guest contribution by Amy Murnan, writer of TheFreshFresher.
It is slim pickings in the world of food blogging.
I know this because, about a year ago, I had a bright idea. I said to myself – hey, don’t worry about your lack of job prospects after graduating University! You like writing and you like cooking, so start a food blog – you’re bound to get a book deal!
Needless to say, I was a tad naïve. In reality, the truth about food blogging is tougher than any other blogging niche. You may not want to believe it, but food blogging is no picnic.
I didn’t want to believe it either, but the fact is that anyone who has ever tried food blogging knows that it is near impossible to get noticed. And why?
Because, these days, anyone can do it.
With the dawning of sites like Instagram, anyone can be a flash-food-blogger. We all know at least one foodie updating the world on every morsel they chew. So why would anyone want to see yet more food on the Internet when so many people are writing about it? And it isn’t just the technology that has changed.
Simply being a good cook won’t get you noticed.
Being (or knowing) a good photographer with a good camera is a standard requirement. You have to be able to transfer that taste – that smell – through the screen. You have to provide something enticing. After all, nobody is going to find my recipe for profiteroles when Good Housekeeping’s looks tastier.
But the fact remains that it is only near impossible. So, how to make food blogging work? I am by no means an expert, but I have learned a few lessons on the subject and mainly from other food bloggers:
And I mean really niche. Diet blogs are slightly more viable, although even gluten-free and vegan sites are becoming more competitive.
Find a gap in the market (easier said than done, I know, but that’s blogging for you) and fill it.
Live a jet-set lifestyle? Luckily for you, people love to read about glamorous lives, and glamorous food. Just take a look at The Londoner’s blog. Unfortunately this option doesn’t apply to many.
Travel-on-a-shoestring, travel around one city, travel to the middle of nowhere – as long as your posts are good, you’ll have a chance. Food lovers love food culture, and if your blog reveals cultures and dishes they’ve never seen before, they’ll like it. Take a look at The Road Forks.
If you work in catering, food prep or some other food-related profession and have other knowledge to pass on – industry insights, career tips and advice – you will gain an advantage. SugarHero is a great example – it is written by an ex-pastry chef with a book deal.
For me, food blogging was a huge learning curve, and still is. If you are ready to take on the blogosphere and make mouths water, be prepared to think, plan and work hard. But most importantly, be prepared to learn.
Amy Murnan is the writer of TheFreshFresher, a food blog aimed at students and young people craving fresh and flavourful food.