Why are you here right now? If the data above is accurate, chances are pretty good that you're looking for wedding ideas (you KNOW we have a million for you to steal) or trying to get inspired. Neither of these are especially surprising, right? I see the same cycle happen every year — a wave of freshly engaged folks flooding in looking for ideas and inspiration… and then at a certain point being like, “Oh my god, I'm overwhelmed with ideas! I have too much inspiration! I need to stop looking at wedding inspo and start, like, actually getting some shit done.”
This always seems to come with a bit of guilt (“I'm sorry, I have to stop or I'm going to get overwhelmed…”) or even blame (“the site isn't as useful as it used to be” …because you've moved from idea-gathering into the next phase of wedding planning, just as you should!), but it's totally just the natural process of planning a big event. First you gather ideas and inspiration from wedding blogs, then you make some choices, then you start acting on those choices. Sometimes as part of those actions you need advice (53% of you!) or logistical assistance (40%).
According to this data, 18% of you are looking for commiseration and a sense of community. This is actually a little surprising to me. When the Offbeat Bride Tribe was still online, only about 1% of Offbeat Bride's readers signed up, and an even smaller percentage of that number were active on the site. The post-Tribe Facebook group that circled up is about 160 people. Offbeat Bride's Facebook page has over 150k followers, but it's a good week if 2% of y'all comment.
Don't even get me started on blog comments, which have never been the Offbeat Bride's community's medium of choice. Our experiment with open threads these last six months hasn't been especially successful, so I'm not sure how long we'll continue to dedicate resources to them. I mean, it's kind of depressing to be like OPEN THREAD… crickets. The one that did the best was kind of most depressing:
Part of this disconnect may be an issue of people wanting a sense of community and commiseration through lurking… as in, “I want community, but I don't want to actually contribute.” That's a pretty common internet phenomenon. Honestly, I've spent years waffling over sustainable ways to provide for the 18% who want more community support… I've yet to find the sweet spot between resources expended and value offered. (Ooh, don't you love it when I talk adding value to business resources HONK SHOO BORING.)
Moving on… let's talk about my personal favorite: the 48% of you who are here to daydream or procrastinate. Friends! I think we're best at cheerleading, empowering, and inspiring… but daydreamers and procrastinators, we are you, and we are here for you. It's no secret that I'm an armchair demographer, and people-watching is my favorite hobby. Combine people-watching with fashion, food, good times, and making out!? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Offbeat Bride is the happiest place of all these things.
But now y'all tell me: why do YOU read wedding media? Especially as the internet shifts, with less and less people browsing their favorite sites, and more and more people just trawling their feeds for links (“I saw this hilarious thing on Facebook, but I can't remember where it actually — maybe it was Buzzfeed or HuffPo…?”), it's interesting to see how the ways people shift in the ways they use their wedding media.