My Chick- niche (Niche blogging)

11 May

I am not a serious book lover. I’m just a lowly Chick lit lover. But hey!!! Chick lit lovers out there do not despair. There’s hope for us yet. There are hundreds ..no millions of book blogs but comparatively only a few cater exclusively to Chick lit. The publishing industry (like most other entertainment industries) follows the 80/20 rule & likes to get 80% or a bulk of their profits from the popular fast selling products. However recently with the ‘blogging’ and ‘net culture’ taking hold Chris Anderson’s “theory of long tail” has started making sense.
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The theory of the Long Tail is that our culture and economy is increasingly shifting away from a focus on a relatively small number of “hits” (mainstream products and markets) at the head of the demand curve and toward a huge number of niches in the tail.

“As the costs of production and distribution fall, especially online, there is now less need to lump products and consumers into one-size-fits-all containers.” Niche blogging in this era of ‘long tail’ allows writers of ‘weird’ topics to sell. Out of the box thinkers and the proverbial ‘ugly ducklings’ can now get their place in the sun. Niche blogging is certainly on the rise as scattered individual purchases add up to a surprisingly large market, especially at online booksellers. According to the New yorker Amazon.com for example sells, about a quarter of all book sales come from outside the site’s top-one-hundred-thousand best-sellers.

My niche is Chick lit- Chick books, chick films chick views ect ……… in fact all the trashy, juicy, mushy Chick literature available. I’ve always had a problem in sourcing enough books and choosing the right ones. Here’s where niche blogging- the “long tail” of the net provides a solution to both problems. Because of the internet these books with relatively limited appeal no longer need to occupy shelf space in a ‘brick and mortar store’. Instead Amazon and other niche websites can sell them to their target audience at virtually no cost.
The long tail consisting almost completely of niche blogs offers the added advantage of Recommendations. These can be far more powerful than traditional advertising, especially for niche products aimed at narrow markets.
With more weirdoes like me taking to blogging the Chick lit niche has become rather well established. More people (men and boys included) are writing about books they have read & books they would like to read. These recommendations and reviews further solidify the niche. There has also been a move on behalf of online book retailers to support and sponsors the relatively popular Chick lit blogs.
As I started to write this blog I went through a lot of chick literature blogs for direction. I wanted to understand what a chick lit blog looks like, their presentation styles etc. Just like the genre most blogs are bubbly, fun and very girly. I fell in love with some of the blogs and the ones that inspire me in terms of style and structure are:

1) TRASHIONISTA

The blog created by Elle Symonds is extremely popular though it has a wide range & talks about other books as well but covers largely Chick lit. Its extensive coverage includes book news, reviews, interviews and……..well simply views. It targets young readers in the age group if 18 – 30 and probably that’s why the advertising on the blog is extensive, with ads for all things girly like shoes, bags, clothes and beauty products. The design style is minimal yet classically feminine with it’s bright pink and black color combination. The blog borders on descriptive and narrative rather than being opinion based. Elle writes frequently, almost every day at about the same time. However there aren’t many comments. The blog is represented on Face book as well as Twitter which accounts for its vast audience. There are lots of links to related niche products and also links to niches within the niche. It’s an exhaustive site. Pictures and images abound.
I especially liked the blog because of the regular and frequent postings and the fact that most of the new books get featured almost as soon as they are launched in the market. Overall the blog has a frothy feel and at times the long descriptions are winding and reveal more than entice.

2) Chick literate

Chick literate is a beautifully laid out blog. It’s neat, uncluttered and not ‘very busy’ and has a high readability. It’s based on a purple theme created by Lisa Sabin: Ewebscapes. It reviews only Chick lit and is a highly focused blog making it truly effective.. There are no advertisements on the blog and the design features cute heart cartoon ratings which are reaaaa…..lly cute. Lisa blogs about once a week and the blogs are typically short….1 paragraph length. What makes the blog different is that she gives a highly personalized opinion about each book but does not narrate the story. The opinions are catchy, to the point and make you feel as though you know the writer. I’d rather emulate her than anyone else. The blog comes across as honest, candid, warm and cozy and you’ll love the cartoon ratings. There’s a lot to do on the blog like contests and quizzes.

For some other interesting chick lit blogs click here

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