The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

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The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST Amy Renea
Administrator
We know they annoy you sometimes.  You know -- those blog writers -- they can be REALLY annoying...with the music on their blog, all those ADS, all those contributors....the list goes on and on.  What is YOUR biggest complaint?

Vote on the poll below!
Bloggers bug me when...
You can select up to 10 options.
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Melissa-The Happier Homemaker
I hate, hate, hate typing in special word verification to comment.  I like to try and comment on newer blogs and I can never get those codes right-especially when typing on my phone which is when i do most of my commenting (I get some blog reading time in the car lane waiting to pick up my oldest from K!) Anyways, I think a lot of them don't know its on or don't realize how much it aggravates people but most of the time I can't even comment to let them know!!
Melissa-The Happier Homemaker
Forum Hostess
www.thehappierhomemaker.com
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Nessa Moments
Yep I second that... please take the word verification off.  So annoying.  If you are worried about the content of comments, I would rather they make them owner approved first.  
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

jenny@birdsandsoap
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
This is a great topic! Amy Lynn Andrews posted the same question earlier this summer and I felt I had to get a few things off my chest, haha.

I'm pasting my previous answer:

 I am a blogger, but I think I read way more blogs than I actually spend writing on my own. I am a DIY junkie, so I'm constantly stumbling upon new blogs as well as returning to some of the larger mainstays in that genre. I can really appreciate when an author has crossed the line from hobby blogging to actually making it a career and they have done it so seamlessly.
My "Top Ten Ways I Lose Interest in a Blog" are (just kidding, because I saw that as someone else's complaint). But seriously, here are my gripes:

1. Sponsored posts: I get it that you are trying to make a living with your blog. I would love a kickback. I would love some company to give me money and free products to talk about them. But I have noticed that a few of my most read blogs are evolving into ads in online magazine form. They were all given the same couch and they all have rave reviews about it. Yeah, I would have lots of nice things to say if someone was dropping off a free sofa at my front door! Everyone loves their new furniture; I would much rather read a sincere post about a sofa that someone has had for 10 years and how it has held up well. I feel like it's almost disingenuous to see the same ad campaign slammed at me from blog to blog.

2. Automatic Video ads/Music. My computer is slow and I am already mad at my browser 90% of the time. It just can't keep up with the constant loading. Throwing in music and videos and those moving ads that go on when you hover over them makes me crazy. My flashplayer can't keep up!

3.Giveaways where you have to like ten thousand things. "Like me on Facebook" is fair. Any more, and I am turned off. Again with the slow computer, do I risk hopping all over the internet and getting grumpy for a $10 Amazon gift card? No. I also don't like the networking thing, where you have to like fifteen of their blog friends and have to comment on their pages and such. I don't force my real life friends on anybody, I think a shout-out once in a while is decent without the overkill.

4. Constant updates on one project. I like to see a project through it's completion. But I don't like reading 19 posts about a room re-do where the author takes a picture of a lamp one week, a rug the next, and "keep coming back" for more updates. I would rather see a project broken up into three posts or so with real content, over something I click on only to be disappointed. I really struggle with posting regularly on my blog, and understandably, it is not a career choice for me. I think bloggers can feel pressure to keep readers coming back, but when is the line crossed from "content" to "constant?" I don't think that "constant content" is really achievable if you want have a life that is not revolving around your blog (that's my experience, anyway).

5. No connection to readers. I get how some bloggers are huge. But I know which ones have gone out of their way to respond to my comments and who have not, and it makes a HUGE difference. A kind "Thank You for the compliment" or recognition of the reader's existence goes a long way. I have a sense of connectedness to some of the blogs I read, while others make me feel like I am cattle just passing through. Some content to chew on, but otherwise I am a stranger. I've even continued to read blogs that overwhelm me with sponsored posts because the author went out of her way more than once to reply to a comment. Makes me feel special and all "warm and fuzzy" inside and I like that like we go way back or something.

6. Content. I enjoy an author's writing style, I like to read blogs because the author is funny, but most important- authentic. I may find their design style atrocious, but they keep me coming back with their wit and content. If they only have time for sponsored posts and giveaways, I forget why I liked them to begin with.

7. Bloggy-Snobby-types. Maybe it is because I am a small-time blogger, but I kind of get annoyed when I read posts about exclusive blogging conferences and inner-circle blog networks. I feel left out as a reader and a fellow blogger (it is probably just a blogging insecurity I have because I am not invited, lol) but it bugs me anyway when I read post after post about it.

8. Poor navigation. I really struggle with this on my blog because I have a blogger blog and I don't know what I am doing. I have a hard time categorizing things because they overlap with so many others (projects/house/family). I wish I could design a better blog (I need to figure out html and do the wordpress thing) because I know I am discouraged when there seems to be no relevancy on blog sections.

I'm really not a miserable person, it just comes across that way on my long list of complaints, haha.

Here was the  original link to read other's comments: https://www.facebook.com/AmyLynnAndrews/posts/411753655526421
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST Amy Renea
Administrator
Wowsas girl!  That's like a whole blog post - awesome! 

Now to go read it!!
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST Amy Renea
Administrator
In reply to this post by jenny@birdsandsoap
ok girl - I hear ya!!  I really do!  

Music is an easy fix and #4 totally drives me bonkers too :)

So here's the question I pose to you -- as a reader fed up with sponsored posts, what do you think is the best way for bloggers to integrate products into their platform?  How would be best to make $$$ while not irritating readers?

I think it is a numero uno concern for most of us, but it's a tricky balance -- would love to hear your take on it jenny!!  

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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Brenda
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
I do not like it when I click a link on the blog and it opens the link in the same window, so I have to use the back button to go back to the original blog I was reading. I like it much better when the links open in new windows. This forum for example, when I was checking out the best DIY bloggers, it would open in the same window........
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

jenny@birdsandsoap
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
Alright Amy, I've been trying to write this all day between sewing halloween costumes, homeschool, babysiting, and a few toddler meltdowns. I don't even know if there is any cohesiveness to my thought process at this point! I can give a reader perspective, and also as a small-time blogger. Can some of you big blog gals chime in? I don't know how all the logistics work on this stuff once blogs become organized and consistent, ha!

I don't know for certain, but I think like all things in life, BALANCE is key. I understand the desire to make a blog work for you, and I would love someday if my blog actually paid me to post (like real money, not pocket change). However, I think a blogger has to be careful which products they choose to endorse, and how far they are willing to push them. Several bloggers I follow regularly stick out to me in their decision to add sponsored posts to their sites. It's really uncomfortable to say negative things about fellow bloggers, especially when there will most likely be a foot-in-mouth moment in my near future  (I swear I feel the hypocrisy creeping in already). I still love them anyway. I keep coming back, even if they are pushing the fish foam like crack. That aside:

As a READER, I think that there are several issues I take with sponsored posts.

Being Real.

I'm bummed when the blogger's identity gets compromised in the pitch. If you follow anybody long enough, you pick upon their writing style, and you can really tell when they are not enthusiastic about the product/service, rather, they're just regurgitating talking points off the package and bearing a resemblance to Chef Tony or that ShamWow guy. I fall in love with bloggers for their personalities and even if they have to deliver the facts, I still want to see a reflection of their person in their writing. I guess I get kind of bummed when it becomes "all business" and I lose interest and come out a little disappointed. If they can talk me through their schpeel while keeping their character intact, I will love them forever!  Even if I'm not buying what they are selling, I can still appreciate the effort because their wit and charm kept me interested.

Relevancy

I'm a couponer, and  I read coupon blogs for that purpose. There are deal blogs, contest blogs, product review blogs, and so on...Most of the bloggers I relate to are some sort of DIY home/garden/artsy types  and I enjoy them for that reason. I get frustrated when I set out to read something inspiring and the blogger's latest post is replaced with junk. It's like reading a magazine, and having all the subscription cards spill out and make a huge mess. Then after picking up said mess, you  sit down to find the magazine is 60 percent ads. It robs my joy.

You can't always kill two birds with one stone. The posts where the product is shoehorned into some sort of craft project that doesn't make any sense or is not true to the blogger's style doesn't count. It's forced and you're not fooling anybody. I think that is what I admire most- when a blogger features a product so beautifully and seamlessly in their post that you know it is sincere and not just because someone's paying them to. If it is relevant to you, it will be relevant to your readers.

I think it is important to be intentional, and not just intentional about making money. I guess we are all interested in the dream of our blog supporting our family or something awesome like that, but staying relevant to your readers  is what gets you sponsor opportunities in the first place, right? If it were me, I would be super choosy and turn people down. I've said "no thanks" to a couple of affiliates now because while I like their stuff, it just doesn't jive with the rest of what I'm going for.  Anybody have experience with that, and/or finding a good match?

Isn't it tough when you like all sorts of things, though??? I still don't even know what my blog niche is, really. My stats tell me overwhelmingly that it is building stuff, but I personally feel like I have more to talk about (even if no one is listening, ha!). And what if your blog evolves? I certainly didn't intend for my blog to lean one way, but it has.
 
Content vs. Constant.

 I've taken a break here and there from a few blogs because it seemed like they overwhelmed me all at once with sponsored posts. One. after. another. I think if I was getting serious about doing sponsor posts, I would have some rule of thumb  in place like: for every sponsor post I do,  I should have  _ number of niche relevant posts.  That way, I am still keeping my content true-to-self and readers can still find why they originally went to my blog. Content. Yes, readers like giveaways, but if that is the only reason you have readers...

I look at it this way: I would sit through a trip out in the middle of the desert for a  two-hour  time-share seminar for  free tickets to Cirque Du Soleil and a free brunch, I would take that pain because I would get to see something entertaining. So, if I know I have to suffer through an ad post once in a while, it is worth it to get back to what I love most about the blog. Again with the balance.

You know what I wouldn't mind seeing more of? A navigable section for reviews. So, you can feel free to push those products like crazy and I can feel free not to read it if I don't want to. Just like the ad space on the side bar, I wouldn't mind a nice little section that says "Products I am currently crazy about" or " check out my sponsor page for new reviews." That way, AFTER I have had a full dose of awesome blog content, I can meander to the sponsor section and see what is waiting for me. Sometimes I want to be aware of new things, but when I'm in the mood. I think we turn to blogging for inspiration, and that is what is lacking in these sponsored posts.


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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Bliss Ranch
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
The only thing that really bothers me on a regular basis is no reply bloggers.  I love to respond to my comments via email but when I hit reply and type a response and don't see that no reply blogger thing first, I either have to spend more time going to their blog page to find their address, go to my blog page and reply on the post, or consider the time I just spendt typing the reply a waste.
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST Amy Renea
Administrator
In reply to this post by jenny@birdsandsoap
Jenny darling - you just wrote a blog post.  Please please please publish this??  Please please - it is WONDERFUL~!
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST: NellieBellie
Agreed!!! Blog post!!
Janel
from NellieBellie

I Host the Forum at http://www.nelliebellie.com/the-community-forum/
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Shannon at Fox Hollow Cottage
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
Wow. So much good information and opinion here.

I feel the same as many of you!!
I don't want a commercial.
I want original content, by the blog owner.
No music. No word verification. No pop up ads. (I think I might have one of those??? LOL)

Don't get so big, that you can not even respond to your very own readers!!!!
I answer every email. With at the bare minimum, a thank you :)
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST-Court-Creek Line
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
When I find a blog I like, it's like finding a new best friend. It lifts me up and motivates me and inspires me and makes me think and all those good things. The thing that really really bugs me (and it's totally unfair of me to say this) is when life gets in the way and they stop posting regularly. Of course I'm guilty of it too. OK, it doesn't really bug me, but it's disappointing when you kind of count on that person to be a regular part of your day. You know? Does that sound crazy? I'm totally not in the majority on this, but I'd almost rather they post daily, even if it's not something huge and ground-breaking, even if it's just a little thought, rather than post only when they have a big huge project to reveal.
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

jenny@birdsandsoap
I agree completely! I love following along, and if I don't hear from someone in a while I get bummed out. However, as much as it bugs me, it bugs me even more that I AM THAT BLOGGER! I carry around massive blog guilt because of my inconsistency; how do you all do it??

Checking my google reader is like Christmas and IT IS super disappointing when there is nothing waiting for me.
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Dear Helen Hartman
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
My "other" issues with blogs  - word verification is number one but I also sort of hate it when they have word verification AND moderation. Trust your readers a LITTLE, will ya?

ALSO - there are some Wordpress blogs that won't let me comment unless I sign into my Wordpress account first. UGH. That is a hassle and if it doesn't take then I can't comment.

Oh, and people who never, ever, ever, leave comments when I comment on their blogs. I don't mean a random drive by but I blog for fun and if you end up on my blog roll, for example, I am reading your blog regularly. When I visit a blog I almost always comment, so if you never come by or comment back, I wanna break up with you.

Mostly it's like most things in life - it's about give and take, participating with others, It's not just a place for you to impart your wisdom to the world... I've read your blogs, you just aren't THAT wise.:)
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

HOST: NellieBellie
In reply to this post by jenny@birdsandsoap
I hear you!!

Just this morning I realized I hadn't commented on some of my regular readers in MONTHS.
I felt just awful. But, it's soo easy to have those things slip through the cracks.
I value them...I really do. But, it seems I get busy doing all the other things and just forget.

It's terrible.
Janel
from NellieBellie

I Host the Forum at http://www.nelliebellie.com/the-community-forum/
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

The Creative Me & My McG
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
I am new to blogging but I have read blogs for a long time...I have alot to learn about blogging but a few of the things that bug me most are

talking ads...I have stopped reading some very good blogs because of it...

post about sponsors and thanking sponsors also turn me off...I don't want to hear how lovely your sponsors are for giving you free furniture and carpeting (that might just be jealousy...lol) but everyone could have a lovely house if they were given free furniture and product to work with - I much rather see how creative people can be within their own means/budget
Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Bree
I agree with a lot of the ones above.

Truncated posts kind of drive me nuts and I've taken a few out of my google reader b/c of it. I read all my blogs in my google reader so I don't have to click around on so many and I can get all the updated ones in one place, but if the post is truncated, I can't read it in the reader. So annoying.

Also, this is just a preference and totally not something everyone would like or do...but when I read a post I look at the picture at the top and my interest is held and possibly lost there. I see the opening image as a kind of preview to the post so I'll read on if the images are promising.  
Mommy to 3 and Professional Photographer
Amateur Crafter
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

Unskinny Boppy
In reply to this post by HOST Amy Renea
Man I feel like I have stumbled upon some blogging GOLD inside this thread!  WOW!  

So, Jenny, you are totally my newest obsession.  Off to stalk you in every way possible after I type this out... :)

I agree with you whole heartedly on all points.  I am in this weird place right now where my blog is growing and I'm getting lots of opportunities thrown my way, but I am having to turn down a lot because I just do not have the time and I don't want to ever feel grossed out and awkward by something I post on my blog for money.  It's a bit like doing something else sleazy for money, if you catch my drift, and I just don't want to be THAT blogger.  But where is the line, you know??

I love that idea of yours to create a separate blog page for reviews.  But would anyone really read them?  I think it would be like a DVR for your blog.... let's just fast forward through these commercials and get back to Adam on The Voice, right?

I don't know what the right answer is.  I don't think ANYONE has the right answers to this right now.  The blogging / branding/ media landscape is changing so rapidly and nobody knows what the heck to do with it.

I purposefully do not have sidebar sponsors because I don't want to feel that pressure to perform.  I'm way too inconsistent for that.  I purposefully haven't joined BlogHer because I don't like their "above the fold" policy.  Actually... I was a member of BlogHer back in like 2006 and quit it when I got a gentle reminded to keep their ads above the fold.  Man, if only I'd stayed in it for the long haul I might be rolling in some BlogHer dough by now...  Eh well.  I stayed true to myself and my blog, and that makes me feel good.  Now I can't go crawling back to them because my foolish pride just won't let me.    

So, yeah.  It's an odd place to be as a blogger right now.  I know that I am going to be super choosy with the brands I represent, and I am  learning how to say "thanks but no thanks" without burning any bridges or hurting any feelings.  I try to stay open and honest about who I am and what I do.  I don't ever want my blog to feel forced or weird or leave me with that pit-in-the-stomach BLAH feeling.  I hate that feeling the most, so that is my barometer for my posts. :)
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Re: The 7 Things I Hate About Blogs

jenny@birdsandsoap
Oh, Beth! I've loved you since I found your stenciled china cabinet many moons ago... I came for the metallic paint and I stayed for your wonderful sense of humor.

I think a review section is possible, here's why:

-I think if you made a short post directing followers to read your latest review they would most likely check it out,

-An exclusive review category means that your featured product/sponsor is always guaranteed full page domination of that section. (that's got to be appealing to them, right?)

-you could do several posts using/schmoozing the product, always linking back to that section of your blog for the "full ad version."

- I think it could be a cohesive part of your blog, AS LONG as the product is relevant to your niche.

That's my grand idea, now if somebody wants to try this out and let me know how it goes, that would be great,
I don't have any sponsors or ads, so I guess that also means I have no experience either, haha.


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