Blogging About Blogging…

I have had something on my mind for a few weeks, and I finally decided to just come out and discuss it with than my wise and insightful readers. (I’m about to ask for your help and advice, so consider yourself buttered.)

  1. I am thinking of changing the look and backbone of the blog. However, I am not looking to do many (if any) changes to content.
  2. I would also like to drop the “Wordpress” from my URL. It’s not all that inconvenient, but I’m a bit of a perfectionist.
  3. Lastly, I’d like to throw up some advertisements. I’ve been happy with readership and company samples, but as a competitive chick, I’m always looking to push to the next level.

So this is where you come in…

Cleo Gives Pleading “Puppy” Eyes

Have any of you bloggers had experience with self hosting, creating your own theme/header, or finding sponsors? Is it hard? Expensive? Time consuming? Restricting?

Any advice you can send me via tweet @LoveSweatBeers, email at lovesweatandbeers@yahoo.com, or as a comment to this post would be greatly appreciated.

In other blog news…

I won a giveaway! Woohoo! Janetha from Meals and Moves sent me the Izze package.

Izze Coupons, Hat, & Keychain

I have only tried their products once when I took a sip of my friend’s orange flavored Izze soda. Her soda had a little added something (starts with a “v” and rhymes with “odka”). It was good, but being the beer girl that I am, I decided a sip was enough.

Izze

I’m really looking forward to trying these. Many of us have memories of comfort food, but I have a very strong memory of a comfort beverage. I used to love getting grape sodas from mini golf (put-put) vending machines on hot summer days. Mom didn’t let me get them often (thanks Ma!), but they were a real treat. I wonder if Izze can take me down memory lane. (Crossing fingers!)

  1. Do you have hints, tips, or suggestions for me? Even constructive criticism is welcome!
  2. Have you tried Izze products? If so, what did you think?

PS: I tried a new brew last night, and I can’t wait to tell you all about it! Maybe that’ll be a good weekend post…

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24 Comments to “Blogging About Blogging…”

  1. The URL purchase can actually be done through wordpress, which is what I did since I’m not sure I am going to go to self-hosting yet (although I’ve thought about it). And that’s as far as the my help goes. 😉 I made my header with simple photoshop understanding, as in I saved and image and threw fancy text on it. Ta da! I’d like to make a better header at some point, but not sure what to do yet. Good luck and I hope other readers are more helpful! 😉

  2. Definitely purchase your own domain- it’s only like $12 a year and you can do that through wordpress! I’m thinking about self-hosting, but I’m having a hard time coughing up a chunk of change when I have no income while being in school haha…we’ll see! I also know that if you want to work with foodbuzz or another ad company you should be self-hosted!

  3. I wish I had some solid advice. But as I’m still using blogger….well…and I make no money, definitely not the go-to girl with this one 😉

  4. I would highly recommend geting your own domain- it’s not that expensive and really easy on wordpress. i’ve tried to self host my self but have found iot techinically challenging but it is high on my blog to do list.

  5. I’ve been thinking about purchasing my own domain through wordpress because it’s so cheap, but I’m nervous that I’m going to get so caught up in schoolwork and my blogging isn’t going to be as consistent (aka daily). It hasn’t happened yet but I’m very hesitant.

    Also… LOVE izze products…. so yummy. They’re my treat to myself every once in a while 🙂

  6. I’m glad you posted this because I have so many of the same questions.
    I started blogging in January and before that had never read a blog before so I’m not the best person to answer these questions but I have learned a few things…
    I’m believe in going the self hosted route. Especially if you’re a perfectionist. That way you have total control over your blog.
    I’m also am on a tight budget because we have 3 little ones and I’m a stay.at.home mom right now so I set up my blog w/ as little cost as possible. I chose to go with Blue Host because at the time I bought the service it was $3 per month for a 2 year package…ya can’t beat that! Sometimes when you buy a package the domain name comes with it and that’s what happened in my case. Once it’s time to renew though I will most likely transfer it over to godaddy because they are the cheapest place to register your domain name (that I’ve found).
    So $3 a month is all I spend right now. At some point I hope to hire someone to do a header for me but that will have to wait for now.
    I decided to go with foodieblogroll for the publishing company although I still have no idea of the best company to go with. I didn’t like that foodbuzz wanted me to sign a contract. Foodieblogroll is much more flexible.
    I would LOVE to hear what more people have to say about advertising. I haven’t had any success with advertising networks outside of foodieblogroll. But then again I feel lost when it comes to this topic. Look forward to reading what others have to say =)

  7. Congrats on the blog!
    I dropped the wordpress a bit ago. I now use dreamhost and got my url through godaddy.
    I had a friend design my header and then paid a friend to change a few things for me. There is a lot you can learn on your own if you’re wiling. I am happy to try and answer any of your questions. All the coding can get confusing!!
    Good luck!

  8. Ohh I love Izze stuff!! I’m jealous! 🙂

    I obviously still have the “wordpress” part in my title so no self hosting here! And I don’t have any blog sponsors because honestly, I just enjoy the blogging community!

  9. I bought my domain (to drop the wordpress.com) with wordpress before I switched to self-hosting so that’s something you can do right now pretty easily and on the cheap. Switching to self hosting, I hired someone. It took about 2-3 weeks and it’s a bit more money (I got qoutes from $250-$399). Technically with wordpress you aren’t supposed to have ads without being self-hosted, although I see a lot of sites that ignore this. I guess until you hit a certain amount of traffic wordpress doesn’t bother “policing” everyone. Email me if you want more info on the switch! I like th flexibility of self-hosted but it’s an investment for sure.

    • Thanks for the info! That’s a bit out of my range, but it seems to be working well for you. Maybe I can find something closer to my limits… which I haven’t actually defined just yet.

  10. I have purchased my own domain through WordPress and it was pretty cheap. That takes the WordPress off the end but they still do all the work for you. I am a little hesitant to go the extra step and self-host because I am not that computer savvy nor do I have the money to get help. From what I understand it takes some up-keep.

    Congrats on the giveaway win!

  11. Self Hosting is not as hard as I thought it would be and I’ve learned a lot in the last couple of weeks since making the switch on my own. I’ll be writing up another post on it later this week and hopefully it helps you out!

    As for getting ads, Food Buzz is popular. You just need to apply (once you’re self hosted) and they’ll get back to you. I’ve also seen ads from BlogHer, but I don’t know much about it.

    As for buying your own domain, wait until you decide on a webhost because you’ll get a free one.

  12. I actually JUST went through the whole process of becoming self-hosted within the past week or so. I was hesitant because of the money involved as well as me not being tech savvy AT ALL, but I asked several of my favorite more experienced bloggers, and they definitely recommended going self-hosted. I, too, wanted to be able to have some advertising on my blog, and you have to be self-hosted to do that. Now that I am self-hosted, I am so incredibly glad I did! You have so much more flexibility and can do so much more with your blog when your self-hosted. It does take some learning (which I’m still doing!), but I think it’s definitely worth it. I used Ryan from http://www.revivemyblog.com to help me transfer everything over, and he did an excellent job at answering all my questions and getting back to me promptly. He is also pretty affordable. Good luck!

  13. Yum! I love the Izze products! The grapefruit flavour is amazing 🙂

  14. I switched to self-hosting not too long ago too! I was with blogger so it was a whole separate crazy issue. You shouldn’t have many problems since you’re already with WordPress. I went with Bluehost and they were awesome. They are available 24/7 and even have online chat if you need help. I’m so happy I did it. I just love the look of my blog so much more. It looks way more professional. I want to know about sponsors and all that too but I don’t know where to start. If you find anything out, let me know! I’d love to get some on my blog too 🙂

  15. Purchase your own www! Looks a lot more professional (if you want to go in that direction). I bought mine through blogspot/google but I think you can go through wordpress too.

    Finding sponsors it’s too tough. Just sent out emails to all companies/stores that you like. See if you get an responses.You might want to start out with a few free ads (say you’ll give them a month free to advertise). Also do you use something like statcounter? The stat/analytic sites can tell you what companies might be reading and then you can email them.

  16. My blog is self hosted and I rolled with Foodbuzz. I probably will not re-sign my contract with them after it expires. It’s not that they have done anything wrong it’s just that blogging is a hobby for me so I have no need for them! They required me to sign a 2 year commitment which up in a little less than a year. The main reason I signed is that I wanted to go to Foodbuzz Festival and they give you a free ticket!

  17. Glad you got the package! I blogged for 2.5 years before making the self host switch. I had to because I ran out of free media space AND I wanted to use plugins. I paid someone to do it for me, but I am convinced I could have done it on my own. I am just lazy 😉 I host through Bluehost and it is affordable for sure. I bought my domain through GoDaddy. No problems so far! Best of luck xo

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