X-FACTOR may be already underway – but its rival will begin this weekend when Strictly Come Dancing tiptoes onto our screens.
One Huddersfield woman is more excited than most for the start of the new series.
For 28-year-old Alex Croft, of Ferndale, Brackenhall, has made a career from blogging about the popular Saturday night show.
She started her website, www.strictlycomedancing.tv four years ago. Last month alone it had more than half a million hits and now gets up to 50,000 daily hits from unique users.
The media-whiz has also been invited by the show’s producers to go backstage and meet all the cast.
Alex said: “Last year I got 5,000 hits on the website daily but for this year’s launch night last Friday, I received 50,000 unique hits.
“My Twitter account has also gathered 2,000 followers and popularity in the blog has really grown.
“I am constantly writing on it. I update it twice or three times daily and it is proving really popular.
“It is also starting to make money through affiliate marketing where people advertise on the side of the blog.
“I am expanding this year by doing podcasts which will also be available on the site.
Alex’s previous career highlights include working for Channel Four and the BBC and she is well versed in digital media.
She and husband Sam own Huddersfield-based Running In The Halls, a mobile phone application business which supplies Apps to organisations such as Huddersfield University.
Sam is responsible for the technical part of the website.
Alex was also recently approached by MSN to do some guest writing about the show and will be submitting her second entry this Friday.
“I think the hits this year have been helped by the fact that the line-up is so good,” she said.
“The celebrity dancers are all big names which most people are very familiar with.
“Nancy Dell’Olio is already proving to be quite a character.
“Having seen the launch night, I think that Holly Valance is in with a very good chance. She did really well.
“And the big surprise was Russell Grant, who has really got the moves.
“There is much more excitement about it this year. It is all over Twitter. Celebrities have got in touch about the blog and they all seem very vocal about it.
“I’m really excited about going backstage at the show again.
“I went last year but have decided to save the trip this time until December when all the dancers will be a little bit stronger and it will all be much more competitive.
“Sitting in the audience was amazing last time. Everybody is really dressed up just in case the camera flashes across to them.”