Before we get too far into this, please understand that this post isn’t bashing any particular mom blogs or anyone attempting to be a mommy blog expert. We’re not commenting on any parenting styles – nope, this is about the industry as a whole.
It’s important to point out where the industry started, where it is now, why it’s broken and where it’s (hopefully) going in the future. We’ll also discuss how Bizzie Mommy aims to fit into the community as authentically as possible and how any future mom bloggers can participate and start their own mom blog in a genuine helpful way.
What’s A Mom Blogger?
To be considered a mom blogger, it’s really any mom who can grab a domain name, web hosting and a WordPress theme. You may not need the domain name or web hosting if you go with a free blogger or free WordPress hosted blog.
So, it’s really just a mom publishing blogs about her kids, family life and the other daily things moms go through.
Not the highest of bars to climb to start doling out advice and building an online following. The more successful ones are typically the most entertaining, NOT necessarily the most experienced moms or the most knowledgeable ones. That’s largely how the mom blogger industry got out of hand.
In fact, some mom bloggers in the past have been found out to be, um… let’s just say not the wholesome, milk and cookies experienced type of mom they pretended to be on their blogs. Some have proven to be convicted felons, drug addicts and worse. Again, not a high bar to cross to simply start a mom blog.
Unfortunately, today the standard mom blogger seems to be indistinguishable from a social media influencer and in fact crosses that line of being more focused on follower counts and likes/comments than on the family, mom tips or advice and the community. More on this later.
When Did The Mommy Blog Era Begin?
Mommy blogs first started to be “a thing” circa 2002 as far as our research could find.
Many mommy bloggers claim to be the first but from what we found the first, or one of the very first, was Melinda Roberts aka Mindy Roberts.
Her mommy blog was appropriately named, “The Mommy Blog” by Melinda Roberts. The Daily Beast best describes ‘The Mommy Blog’…
“When Melinda Roberts founded the first mommy blog—called simply “The Mommy Blog”—in 2002, it represented an unusual injection of the domestic, feminine-coded sphere into the previously male-dominated arena of the internet.”
In other words, Melinda’s new blog gave women a voice. It put the spotlight on the home, the family, and most importantly ‘the mom’ and her daily life. Looking back The Mommy Blog was influential in inspiring other moms to start their own mommy blogs and join the conversation that Melinda began.
Her blog led to a book deal, got her on the Oprah Winfrey show and probably helped start a social media revolution as moms across the world began to get comfortable documenting their lives on the internet.
The Mom Blogger Business Grows in Size & Volume
The Daily Beast article goes on to state that the mommy blog business was booming towards the late 2000’s and boy-o-boy yes it was.
Mindy inspired more moms to share their lives, their experiences and a collective conversation began to develop. Not only did more moms realize there was a whole area of the internet devoted exclusively to them, but they also realized that they could be a part of it.
Moms from all over were communicating, sharing, and connecting. There weren’t any brand sponsorships, online ads, product pitches or much of any commercial intent at this point. Just connection and sharing advice.
It was a beautiful thing… until it wasn’t anymore.
Parental Overshare & Kids As A Commodity
The internet matured, technology improved, social media boomed – all contributing factors for a perfect storm of vanity and monetization.
The intent of the mommy bloggers shifted with the internet.
It became more of a way to work from home versus the authentic advice seeking and sharing of the original community that Melinda Roberts started. The primary currency of the mom bloggers was their kids and their family life. So, they shared, sometimes oversharing, blurring the lines of click bait and personal family moments.
Mom blogs became more focused on the ‘star’ versus the information. Reality tv on a blog. A face, a family, a personal life. Those are the stars of the show.
That’s what builds the audience, gets the follows, and brings in the endorsement deals. It’s not about the advice – it’s about the mom as the star of her mommy blog because she wants to work from home.
Let that sink in.
Moms did their parenting and their daily duties without pay throughout history until this point. No one is at fault, no is to blame, it’s simply the first time in the modern era (any era) that motherhood had the ability to be monetized.
Josie Denise Blows The Whistle on Mom Blogger Parenting Blogs
No one or nothing can describe where the mom blog industry was (in 2016) better than Josie Denise. Josie Denise was a popular mom blogger with her blog titled ‘American Mama’ writing about her family, children, and of course sponsored content.
She says that her blog became “consuming” and that her family’s life was centered around the blog. She admitted that every child’s birthday, every vacation, every special moment was staged with multiple poses and do overs to make her life look, “perfect.”
She was raking in the money at $1,500 per post at one point due to the traffic the American Mama blog was receiving.
Ultimately, Josie decided it had become too much and she didn’t like where she had found herself. It wasn’t about the community, it wasn’t about giving advice or connecting – it was simply a front for paid sponsorships. She quit and wrote a scathing post about it.
Josie Denise officially gave the mom blogger industry the wake-up call it so badly needed.
So where does an industry go from here?
How To Be An Authentic Mom Blogger or Parenting Blog
Monetization is not a bad thing. We monetize the very website you’re reading. In fact, it’s quite necessary to have the resources to operate. Mom bloggers are allowed to monetize and there is nothing wrong with that.
In our opinion, the focus needs to be on the advice, not the mom.
We’ve all heard the expression, “mom tribe” which refers to a community. Community tends to hold itself accountable. Community is more authentic at its core versus a model designed as a reality show or social media influencer star.
Bizzie Mommy has always attempted to build community and not glorifying any 1 mom. Our own Stephanie Edenburgh the Bizzie Mommy Editor-in-Chief who edits and approves most of the content here doesn’t put herself in the spotlight. If you review our YouTube channel, you’ll notice it’s made up of various contributing moms offering genuine advice based on their own personal experience.
The mom blogger business model that works is a community focused one. A mom tribe.
Successful mom blogs like Scary Mommy rely on contributing writers, all contributing a piece of knowledge, a story a part of their life experience for the greater good. That’s the same model we here at Bizzie Mommy work within.
The Future of Mom Bloggers & How You Can Be A Part Of It
As mentioned, the future is one of authenticity and reality. Not reality TV, real life lived the way we all live it versus posed, photoshopped and scripted. Mom bloggers past and present should focus on the information or advice. Sometimes you don’t have answers but you have questions, put those out into the blog world (remember when we called it the blogosphere, weird).
Most mom bloggers don’t have the funds to hire contributing writers and pay them for their work so do it yourself. Let your information stand on its own without the influencer aspect of being and acting crazy in order for people to follow you.
Do You Need To Be A Mommy Blog Expert To Start?
You don’t need to be an expert to share in a community. No one mom knows everything about parenting, pregnancy, relationships, etc.… I’ve never found a mom who didn’t know something, a trick or tip that I didn’t know. That’s the authenticity of how you should start your own mom blog if you choose to do so.
Don’t pretend to be an expert, just share what you know.
Frequently Asked Questions About Mommy Blogs
How Much Do Mom Bloggers Make?
Mom bloggers can make six figure’s and above if they are sharing and build up a loyal audience of other moms who don’t necessarily follow them because they are ‘mom famous’ but turn to their mom blog because they trust the information that they share.
Our personal advice is to not focus on how much you can make mom blogging but to rather use it as an outlet to share what you know, share important lessons as well as seek out advice yourself. Once you have some content online (blog type content or video content) you can place ads on the website and seek out
Who Are The Most Influential Mommy Bloggers?
There are various niches within the main segment of mom bloggers and each niche has influential bloggers within it’s respective subcategory. Here are some of the more popular subcategories;
- Budget moms – these include coupon mom type websites, moms interested in finance, budgeting, shopping moms, etc.
- Entrepreneurial moms – these include Stay at Home Moms (SAHM) and Work From Home Moms (WFHM) and all forms of business mom blogs
- Mom’s based on race – there are various African American mom blogs, Asian mom blogs, Hispanic mom blogs, Indian mom blogs, you get the picture 😉
- Regional mom blogs – southern mama blogs, California mom blogs, Boston mom blogs, etc…
- Technology focused mama’s – mom blogs that focus on the tech aspect of being a mama, issues related to screen time and toddlers, should you let your 4-year-old use an iPad, etc… These tech mama blogs also discuss not just the tech for kids but also how the actual mom uses tech to navigate her busy life.
Are Mommy Blogs Still A Thing?
Mommy blogs became ‘a thing’ around 2002 with The Mommy Blog by Melinda Roberts. Her inspirational and helpful blog inspired a whole industry of mom bloggers and an online community was born. That community still exists today and mommy blogs are still a thing, they just look different.
Communication and connection has increased tremendously with social media platforms like Instagram, YouTube, Facebook and even TikTok. Mom bloggers now use these tools to help connect and personalize their content further than just words and pictures on a blog post.