The BlogHer mission is to create opportunities for women who blog to pursue exposure, education, community and economic empowerment and women are lining up at the virtual door, eager to participate in Web 2.0 applications.
Recently, the results of the BlogHer/Compass Partners 2008 Social Media Benchmark Study were revealed and they show great new insights into the power of the blogosphere and the significant role it plays in the lives of U.S. women.
As a female blogger and a reader of blogs myself, I am not surprised by the results, only excited by the online social media trends indicated by the survey.
The following were among the findings:
* 36.2 million women actively participate in the blogosphere every week with 15.1 publishing at least one post a week and 21.1 reading and commenting to blogs a week
* More than 40% of women surveyed consider blogs a reliable source of advice and information
* 40% of bloggers believe their biggest impact is through fostering relationships with like-minded individuals
* Half of women surveyed say blogs influence their purchase decisions
Not only do these findings reaffirm the power of online social media, they vindicate the work of my colleagues and I. As a blogger, the impact and reach that one has on the general audience is hard to quantify, often leading us to wonder if anyone is reading our words at all.
Rest assured that they are and how! Many find themselves so captivated by the power of the blog that "large percentages of women said they would give something up to keep the blogs they read and/or write." The guilty pleasures apt to be sacrificed run the gamut from alcohol to iPods to chocolate. It's that serious!
The survey was conducted in two parts; one reflecting a representative sample of the general U.S. population of women and the other reflecting the BlogHer network and included more than 7400 participants. The survey is the first of several that BlogHer and Compass Partners will facilitate in six-month increments in order to examine shifts in online trends and behaviors within the blogosphere. The general U.S. population survey will be conducted on a yearly basis.
The number of women on the Web has been steadily and successfully growing for some time now. I'm not sure why it's such "breaking news".
After all, women have a track record for being great communicators and sharing our stories is often an essential part of our gender culture. The same way that women exchanged their daily escapades while in the sewing circle or in their own journals, blogs provide women with another positive outlet to express their opinions, ideas and solutions.
Blog on sisters. Blog on.