Travel bloggers have often been challenged by their critics for mostly preaching to the converted when it comes to their outpourings on social media.
This notion is primarily due to the accusation that many are retweeting and sharing one another's content, attend the same events, and have a siege mentality to those that dismiss their worth.
In fact, the "circle of nothingness" label has been leveled at the blogging community on various occasions over the years - yet it continues to grow in size and, to its credit, has done a lot to try and improve its overall image in recent years.
Bloggers - and some travel journalists - like to call themselves "influencers" these days, in an attempt to showcase what they do in a more marketing-speak kind of way (and to help banish the freeloading image that has dogged the travel blogging community for years).
The idea is that their content (articles, videos, images, social media activity) has an impact, in some way, on the buying power of the great unwashed travelling public.
But are they invariably preaching to the same people (with many of their followers on Twitter simply enjoying the collective wisdom of a high-profile group of bloggers), or do they have their own follower base?
Digital marketing and CRM provider Ryan Solutions analysed the Twitter accounts of ten well-known bloggers to find out.
The bloggers (with their follower number in brackets):
- TheRebelChick (80k)
- JohnnyJet (84k)
- LandLopers (89k)
- ThePlanetD (119k)
- NomadicMatt (98k)
- TammiLeeTips (109k)
- MappingMegan (96k)
- TrueNomads (92k)
- MalloryonTravel (88k)
- Elliottdotorg (125k)
The analysis saw Ryan Solutions divide unique followers by total followers to find the unique reach rate for different sized groups of influencers.
For example, it says, looking at two influencers with a combined 100,000 total followers and 75,000 of those were unique, the unique reach would be 75% of total reach.
So, when comparing any combination of two bloggers, the analysis found that the average unique reach was 91.8%.
The graph below shows the unique reach for other combinations.
Of the 982,000 total followers across all ten of the influencers we looked at, 636,000 were unique (64.8%).
Even comparing the two accounts with the most crossover (MappingMegan and TrueNomads), Ryan Solutions found that the unique reach is still 78%.
The study says:
"So is there crossover? Yes. But assuming this trend holds true on Facebook, Instagram and other networks, there’s not as much as we expected.
"Instead, it appears that each of these travel influencers has an audience that is both large and captive, but also unique to them."
NB: Influencing image via Shutterstock.