Microblogging Killed the Auto-Biography Star - A Critical Reflection of Microblogging
With celebrity auto-biography sales down by 34 million pounds since 2008, is microblogging has anything to do with this?
When I was a pre-teen, I remember counting down the days before I could get my hands on the latest JLS auto-biography. Although I listened to their music daily, I knew absolutely nothing about their personal lives or their younger years. That is what made the book release so exciting. Owning the auto-biography gave me a sense of closeness to them, it gave me a glimpse into what life would really be like in their shoes.
Fast forward to now, it seems I know anything and everything about my favourite celebrities and reality TV stars. How is that you ask? Through Instagram, Twitter and You-Tube.
The Glory Days of the Auto-Biography
I think we can all agree that Katie Price is a serial auto-biographer, releasing a whopping six books in the last 16 years, with her seventh planned to be released in the very near future.
Back in 2004, Katie broke records with her first book ‘Being Jordan’ seeling nearly 3 million copies. Because of its success, she hit the top 100 best selling authors of the decade between 2000 and 2009. However, her latest book ‘Reborn’ released in 2016, proved otherwise. In fact, her national book tour sold less than half of its expected capacity in certain areas.
With this in mind, going onto Katie’s Instagram account she has a impressive 2.6 million followers and over 300 posts, showing pictures of her children, pets and recent lovers. As well as this, she regularly posts Instagram stories updating her followers of her recent daily activities. So, with all of this just clicks away, is there really any need for yet another auto-biography when we have seen it all already?
This goes for all celebrities in the modern era. With the majority of them now partaking in microblogging online, there is little to no need for an auto-biography.
What is Microblogging?
McFedries (2007) sums the term up simply as ‘posting updates, ideas or simply quick notifications’. This is something the majority of us do almost everyday. Every time we post a picture with a caption or a short tweet or Facebook status we are microblogging.
Though its main purpose is for social connection, it has more recently come into play helping businesses achieve their marketing goals. And with 4.57 billion of us around the world using the internet in 2020, it makes it the largest and most cost effective platform for marketers. Using influencers for example, we follow influencers because we are intrigued to learn about their lives, which we follow through their regular microblogging content. Therefore, when influencers use their platform to microblog about products or services, we are likely to be influenced to purchase them.
How I Have Benefitted From Microblogging
As I am sure you already know, since starting this blog, I have created brand new social media accounts on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for circulation and inspiration. I wanted to start new accounts to keep it completely proffesional and dedicated to my topic. On each of these platforms I have practised microblogging, synchronising my usage to create maximum engagement for my blog.
Because of this, I have received a wider number of views from different platforms. My first blog ‘Introducing Me and Why Journalism?’ received an extra 19 reads from posting the article on my different social media sites. On Twitter especially, I have even had other users share my article on their own profiles, which has played a big part in boosting my own engagement.
This has not been my first time professionally microblogging, whilst on my placement year, I used microblogging on LinkedIn to post my achievements and experiences whilst working as a Junior Account Executive at a PR agency. Because of my regular microblogging, I hope future employers will be able to recognise my capabilities and knowledge of the industry.
So, reflecting on the benefits of microblogging, it is the perfect way to boost your social presence for the low cost of consistency and relevancy. For celebrities on the other hand, their over sharing habits are killing the need for auto-biographies. But, this may not necessarily be a bad thing. Brands are now paying thousands for celebrities and reality stars to post content on their social media platforms, substituting the loss of potential book deals.
For me personally, microblogging has given me a platform to increase visibility of my blog, create article ideas and connect with those who share the same interests as myself.