Monday, November 9, 2009

Marketing, Monetizing and Mr. Clean.

Below is a guest post from fellow mom and fellow blogger, JGH, of Nyack Backyard.

So far, I’ve resisted any temptation to click on the word “monetize my blog” on my settings page in Blogger. It’s not that I don’t want to make money, it’s just that I don’t want to start thinking of my blog as a business. I’m afraid that the minute I do, the feelings of obligation will begin and it won’t be fun anymore. I’d want to add more gadgets, and more ads and maybe even sell a few things, and then before long, the blog would be one big commercial venture. And although some of my favorite blogs have advertisements, I probably wouldn’t follow one that is devoted solely to reviews.

Wouldn’t it be fun if blog marketing worked the opposite way? Wouldn’t it be nice if Trader Joe’s noticed how many times I’ve praised their Dixie Peach Juice on my blog and sent me a case of it? Why didn’t Mr. Clean notice when I praised his Magic Eraser Sponges? I can always use a few more of those.
My friend once said something nice about a local nursery that got printed in the paper, and they sent her a gift certificate. Now they’ve got her and several of her friends as customers for life. That’s what I call cultivating a local audience!

Every once in awhile I’ll get an email from someone asking me to review or link to something in exchange for being entered in a raffle. I’m sorry. There is no way to know what my chances of winning are, or how many are entered, or even if the drawing is rigged. I guess I’m just not that trusting. I’d probably respond better to the idea of product reviews on my blog if I was offered something for free that I could really use, like a cordless chainsaw or woodchipper, video camera or hardy kiwi vines! I think I could make a good case for any of these products. But the odd things that I’ve been offered haven’t been on my wish list, and now that bloggers must disclose the fact that they’ve received freebies to review, I’d be wary of looking like a sell-out.

There is one kind of marketing that I do participate in, though. It’s called “oblivious” marketing. The Lazy Mom informed me just recently that when someone clicks on one of the books listed on my sidebar, they are directed to and Amazon page where they can purchase it. I hadn’t known that. I’d be surprised if any click throughs result in a purchase, but if they do, shouldn’t I get a cut? How do I sign up for that? I could really use that 17 cents.


  1. Love this, JGH! I think your last line nailed it. I mean, really, how much $$ is anyone making cluttering up their blogs with ads? Is it really worth it? I think the blog loses some of its integrity, too, with advertisements.

  2. No monetizing on my blog though I've thought of it many times. One of my blogging friends linked to a lady who does monetize and guess how she makes money? By getting friends to click on ads. Um, gee, I thought that was not allowed though handy when you sell out-oops-I meant when you get a check. If I could live with myself doing this and IF I thought I'd make money I might more seriously consider monetizing just to give me a bigger incentive to spend the amount of time on my blog that I do. But then again, maybe not...nah, I blog because I like to share and I think the readers of my blog like it ad free so that is how it will stay. Nothing against bloggers who do monetize but I can't see how they would make enough money honestly to be worth it, but then again maybe even that 17 cents helps.

  3. I don't monetize my blog. It's always been a place of creativity and fun and, like you JGH, as soon as it starts being synonymous with business, the fun would evaporate for me.

    Confession - I've never once really checked out any ads on anyone's blogs. I just focus on the posts. The ads can be very distracting...but the thing that drives me nuts on blogs is the "vote for me" kind of things. They drive me nuts.

  4. Feelings of obligation might not be a bad thing for me...but then I'm sure I'd get over it.

    Anyway, I have a hard time believing advertising ever works - it amount of money that is spent on it is mind boggling. If someone's dumb enough to give me some of it I'd take it. But I'm sure I'll never get around to it monetizing anyway.