Thursday, February 18, 2010

ON BLOGGING ~ Pimping the Blog...

BlogAnon: Joy of Confession

Image by Cool Text: Logo and Graphics Generator

Welcome to our weekly BlogAnon meeting where we confess a particular blogging sin and turn to you for support, suggestions and that blogging bond so we know we're not all alone. Don't be shy. Read along and let us know if you identify with us this week.

We don't have ads on our blog. Though it is nice to make money blogging, I've always felt THIS blog is personal. It is an extension of our home, and when you pull into our driveway, you don't see a billboard.

But we do link to places that pay money for my posts. If you came to our house, we'd tell you about those sites too. To me, that isn't advertising - it is self-promoting.

But that UpTake button on our sidebar? The one where I always link to my current post over there? I get paid to display it. So although I consider it self-promotion, technically it is advertising something that we do not own. So am I being hypocritical with my anti-ad stance by being paid to cross-promote?

I don't enjoy ads on other personal blogs, but I don't begrudge someone for using them. I understand the need or desire. For us I always felt it was a personal choice. But now I wonder if we haven't been pimping our blog out all along?

What are your thoughts about ads on personal blogs? Do you display them? Do you make enough to feel OK about them? Have you changed your mind and removed them? If you don't have them, do you feel less about another blog that does? Is it hurting the spirit and freedom of the personal blog? Don't be afraid to share - your blogger thoughts are safe with us!

22 comments:

Forgetfulone said...

I haven't displayed ads, but I'm not opposed to them. It's just something I haven't taken the time to investigate for my blog. If you can have ads that don't interfere with the content - even self-promoting "ads," then I say, go for it!

rhapsodyinbooks said...

Wordpress doesn't allow you to put up ads unless you are on self-hosted wordpress, which I am not. So I can pretend to myself to be a purist only because I don't have a choice; if I were allowed, I might succumb, at least to help pay for postage, for example. I admit that I don't like to see ads on other blogs, but I guess I kind of have gotten used to ignoring them too.

Book Dilettante said...

I finally put in a few ads after a long time without any. They don't intrude too much as long as you specify text only, no images.

Matty said...

I am too technically challenged to be involved in advertising. I can barely navigate my blog and make minor tweaks (as you know), let alone having advertising on it.

When I visit another blog, I don't mind an advertising link, as long as the entire blog isn't cluttered up. I've been on some blogs where there are so many links and buttons for advertising, that I find them very messy and distracting. I usually don't follow them.

Sandy Nawrot said...

Personally, I've never wanted to pimp myself out for what would probably amount to a few bucks a month. If it were a little more lucrative, then I'd consider it. It would be great to actually make money at blogging. But it just doesn't seem worth it to me. There are some blogs where it is just plastered with ads, and that can be a pretty big turnoff.

Margot at Joyfully Retired said...

I am self hosted and could run ads but I don't. It's not what my blog is all about. I do link books (when I remember) to Amazon which gives me literally pennies when someone buys that book. I only did that because my kids think I should be making money off my blog and that was the only way I could get them to be quiet about it. After eight months I'm up to about $3. Not a get-rich-quick scheme.

My eyes have learned to ignore the ads I see on blogs. The annoying ones are the google ads that show up in posts, not sidebars. Those even show up in my reader. I've stopped following all but one of those people. The funny thing is it made me realize their blog wasn't that great anyway. At some point I imagine they will catch on because they no longer have readers or they won't make any money and stop the ads.

The Bumbles said...

Margot = That is an interesting thought. That the blogs you found that were consumed with ads did not present the most interesting content. I think that is part of our underlying avoidance of ads - the perception that we're all about the money. How much money can you make if the content isn't worth visiting? Providing good content draws visitors, visitors become interested, visitors engage in discussions, relationships are built, friendships occur, friends are loyal, people loyal to you will support your earning endeavors, whatever that is or wherever else it might be. That earnings model might take a lot longer to develop, but I bet in the long run, it would lead to more sales via word of mouth from a loyal base than whatever ads support from random clicks.

LJ Ducharme said...

I don't display any adverts either. Although, like you, the thought of making a little extra cash sounds appealing.
But I really don't want that kind of exposure. But I'm also not the kind of person who puts bumper-stickers on my car advertising my political, spiritual, or emotional point of view.
If you advertise something - it must mean you also advocate it.

The Bumbles said...

Book D = I always wonder why marketers even put ads out there - it seems that everyone commenting here does the same thing I do - train their eyes to skim over them. Some people must be clicking on them right? Are you able to make a decent amount from them?

I'm more likely to click a link within a post that describes something than just a visual on a side bar. But I dislike sponsored posts because I feel the writer is not genuine trying to slip those in amongst their personal posts. It is a fine line to try to balance by a blogger trying to make an honest buck.

The Bumbles said...

Rhapsody = I bet if a blogger ran an ad, and underneath it said something like "click on my sponsor - it will help recoup postage expenses for those great giveaways" I probably would do it. Because I would feel like I knew the reason behind the ad and was helping out a friend. I don't mean to say that people need to justify their ads, just that for me, a personal touch would make them stand out and lead me to interaction.

The Bumbles said...

LJ = excellent point. I am not sure how much control you have as to which ads are displayed when you use something like AdSense. But I would certainly look into that before signing up. The last thing I would want is an ad for a product or service that I feel strongly against.

The Bumbles said...

Matty = I'm pretty sure they make ads as easy as possible to include on your blogs. The more tech. barriers, the less people they can market to.

The Bumbles said...

Forgetfulone & Sandy = thanks, that is how I see it too.

Sun Singer said...

I have ads on my Typepad blog, but not on my Blogger or Wordpress blogs. Partly, it's a matter of laziness or, at times, not having a layout where the ads will fit.

I tried out pay-per-post some years ago because the sites behind it wanted me to write posts about subjects I either didn't care about or that didn't fit the main purpose of the blog.

Malcolm

Diane said...

I've been linking book titles to amazon, when I remember, for about 6 months now, and honestly it is hardly worth the effort. The few dollars I've made have come from purchases my adult kids have mostly made using my links...LOL

I find it distracting when I find a blog that is plastered with ads, so I guess at least visually -- I don't ; like when I see blogs busy with ads.

Staci said...

I don't like a lot of ads because they just aren't visually appealing. I tend to like clean blogs without a lot of bling...probably because I still have dial-up!! LOL!

lovesmukiwa said...

I tend to prefer blogs without a cluster of ads because I find too many of them distracting. I don't have any myself because a) I doubt I could figure out how to do it and b) my blog is pretty boring and I think I have about 5 people who check it out with any regularity and 4 of them are family!

stacybuckeye said...

I don't mind an ad or two on the side bar, but more than that bother me and I hate the ones that show up in posts. Those really do turn me off.
As for your 'ad' it's not the same. Self promotion is a good thing. I am going to work on linking some of my posts on there soon :)

jehara said...

A few ads don't bother me, but when the page is so cluttered and takes forever to load, I will not even bother.
I think there is a difference between self-promotion and ads. I don't think you are being hypocritical in the least.

Beth F said...

I was totally against ads . . . until last week or so. I'm giving them a try for a couple of months to see if it's worth it. I earned a total of $15 from my affiliate links last year. Oh boy! I'm rich! Some people say they make $30 to $100 a month. I thought I'd give it shot. What the heck. The ads sit in the sidebar and someone with click and buy or not (shrug). If I don't make any money or I get sick of looking at the ads, off they go.

Mrs4444 said...

I have no objections whatsoever about small ads on blogs (I don't find them annoying. I do prefer reading blogs on which the post body takes up most of the blog (I can't stand the 3-column Wordpress layouts on which ads play 2/3 of the role on the page. I pretty much don't return to blogs like that, simply because I find them annoying. That said, if I've previously fallen in love with the blogger's content and they've switched, I usually stick around (and grumble silently to myself) :)

Ashley Ladd said...

I don't mind ads at all as long as they're not overpowering and as long as the blog's not one big ad.

I'd love to make money from my blog. The couple times I tried, nothing happened. :(

Maybe I'll try again sometime.