In order to become a less obscure author, I was told to start a blog. Check. Then I was told to “Brand Myself.” Check. Even though that conjured up images of U-shaped hot irons and cattle ranches, I did my best. I called myself, “Little Miss Menopause.” I titled my blog, “Once Upon Your Prime” and originated the tagline, “Live Happily Ever Laughter.”
Then the old people started to come. Probably because of this post, “How to be a New Blogger and Not Sound Like an Old Codger.” Which was fine. I love old. I am old. But I wanted a greater variety of readers. I added a purple feather boa. I thought purple feathers would bring out the fashionistas, the younger women who dance with purple feather boas, and the men who like the younger women who dance with purple feather boas. Or just fans of the movie, “The Color Purple.” Or just fans of any movie! But nope, still old people.
Having no experience in public relations, (and before I put up my new tagline, “Menopause. It’s what’s for dinner!”) I decided to consult a young, pretty, hip professional marketing exec who specialized in this branding stuff.
Let’s meet “Brandy, The Bragging, Brooding, Borderline Blog Brander,” and listen in on some Brainstorming.
Brandy: So first of all, lose the Feathers and the Purple. You’re attracting old ostriches and Barney the Dinosaur. Second of all, you need a different photo of yourself.
Me: But all my photos resemble me.
Brandy: That’s gonna be a problem. Okay, let’s take it from the top. You must establish positive associations with your blog. So can you change your name to “Miss Monopoly?” It’s got many of the same letters as Menopause but people like “Old Board Games” much more than they like “Old Bored Dames.”
Me: (ignoring) Listen, I used to work in real estate and when we wanted to elicit lots of interest in a home, we’d hold an open house. Bake cookies, spray cinnamon fragrance, and tell the owners to put away all the old furniture and photographs so people could envision it as their own.
Brandy: Perfect advice. Hide your photo. And cookies? Not a bad idea. You could do a Blog giveaway. A prize for each person that signs up to Follow you. What do you have of value to offer?
Me: I’m a writer – – I could offer to name a character after every person that comments on my blog. My next topic will be the “101 Dalmations” so if I could just get 101 New Readers who like polka dots, I could name each dog after. . .
Brandy: That’s a bit spotty. I’m not feeling it.
Me: Alright. Well, when I worked in the mall, we always had coupons and specials which brought in large crowds. I could say, “Read one Blog, Skim the Second One in Half the Time?” Or I could hold a “Going Out of Blogosphere” sale. Everything must Go! How about, “Now with Double the white space and images,” plus “Two Scoops of Pronouns in Every Paragraph!”
Brandy: (big sigh) Okaaaay, that’s just Blawkward!
Me: There’s always the old “Bait & Switch?” That always worked in retail. I’ll write a new post titled, “I Came In With A Wrecking Ball,” but when readers click on it, they’ll be automatically redirected to my real blog called, “I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Get Up.” That’s genius.
Brandy: That’s oblognoxious.
Brandy: You know. Blogappalling. Blogawful. (yawn) But the Super Bowl was recently on television. A clever commercial might just work for you.
Me: Make my writing a product? You mean like, “Blog Cabin Syrup?”
Brandy: Too sappy.
Me: I’ve got it! Maybe my blog can have familiar famous sound effects. Like when you click on the home page, it “Snaps, crackles and pops!” Or it fizzes and plops like Alka-Seltzer, or honks two times like Aamco. Wait! It could even giggle like the Pillsbury Dough Blog.
Brandy: Girl, that really takes the Biscuit.
Me: Okay, how about, “Just When you Thought it was safe to Read my Blog” or “In Cyberspace, Nobody can Hear You Scream!” Or my favorite, “If You Blog It, They Will Read.”
Brandy: You’re not a movie. Keep it simple. “Mmm, Mmm, Good,” or “Have it Your Way.”
Me: I’m not a bowl of soup or a burger either. You’re not very supportive and you seem pretty useless for a Professional Brander from Brandeis University. ”
Brandy: Well I’ve got news for you, Sistah – – you shoulda never left real estate or your salesgirl day job in the mall. You’re Blogatrocious.
Me: Listen, Brandy the Brander – – I don’t think you help people brand themselves at all. I think you just sit around and coin new Blogadjectives. I could do far better on my own, just by making a list of Slogans or Catch Phrases for people’s blogs.
Blogans For Your Blog!
1. It Keeps Blogging…and Blogging….and Blogging….
2. Got Blog??
3. “Where’s the Blog??” (need cranky, old woman mascot for this one!)
4. We’ll Leave the Blog on For ya.
5. Blog all that You Can Blog!
6. Melts in Your Mind, Not on Your Screen
7. A Blog is a Terrible Thing To Waste!
8. Home of the Blogger
9. Oh, What a Blogging!
10. Does she Blog or doesn’t she??
11. A Little Blog’ll Do Ya!
12. Takes a flogging but keeps on Blogging.
13. You Deserve a Blog Today
14. Make a Run for the Blogger
15. My Blogna has a first name, it’s B-L-O-G.
16. Like a Good Blogger, WordPress is there!
17. Don’t Hate Me Because I’m Blogiful.
18. I’d Like to Build the World a Blog…
19. If you Don’t Blog all over the place, You’ll Just end up blogging on My Space.
20. I Can’t Believe I Blogged the Whole Thing!
21. The Blogfast of Champions!
As for a Blog Promotion — every time you read my blog, feel free to have a little Brandy. The liqueur, not the Brandy Bimbo quoted above.
Seriously, If you leave me a comment or start to follow my blog, (just let me know if you’d like me to) and I’ll think up a new “Blogan” for your Blog too!
“Menopause. It’s what’s for dinner!”
I’m a huge fan of that one! 🙂 And for the record, I adore everything about your blog. The name, your photo, the feathers and conversation hearts- they all coordinate perfectly. Then again, I’ve been told I have the mind of a person twice my age…If I find any whippersnappers moseying around, I’ll be sure to navigate them your way! 😀
You’re so sweet to take the time and go back and read my older posts. I really liked that slogan about Menopause, it’s what for dinner, too. But you’re the only one to comment on it. Guess we have that same offbeat humor? Thanks for being you!
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Lol… this might get old, but your wordplay is always amusing! 😛
Always fun to read your blog! Humor crosses all age gaps (except sometimes when grown ups laugh at something stupid and you wonder “what was so funny about that?” :P) … I might not be the old audience you expect but I do like to think I’m older (and wiser) in my head…
On the offhand, if you still going to write about dalmatians, can one of them be named after me? … and can it also look like it has got one black eye? 😛
Sir Sid, Sir Sid and Sir Sid – – this is sounding much to much like a dare to me. (In fact, it rings of a Double Dog Dare!) And we’ve both heard, “Be careful what you ask for,” right?
Your next topic being dalmatians? Hell yeah! Its an intriguing idea… off the top of my head I can’t possibly think how one would write about that (if I could, I’d be the next Walt Disney 🙂 )… So yeah I’m interested… don’t take it as a dare though, no pressure 😛
I love dares. I am lots of fun to play truth or dare with because I hate confessing and am way too impulsive to turn down the dare.
Excellent! Its a dare then 😛
PS. I don’t suppose you would want to be named after an ice-cream? I almost put that my next topic was going to be 31 Flavors (do they have that in India??) NOT backing down, mind you – – just seeing if you have any flexibility in your name tribute desires.
PPS. And wouldn’t that earn me one of your creative badges for my blog as well????
I don’t mind being named after an ice cream at all! And yes we do have a Baskin Robbins in India, I just don’t think they understand that there are supposed to be 31 flavors and that even in the logo it says 31 in the “BR”…
I’m flexible (not physically but…) about my name tribute thing 😛 And you do get a creative badge! 😀
It’s settled. You will be a dalmation molded out of chocolate and vanilla ice-cream. Chocolate and vanilla swirl ice-cream made outa dalmation? It’s not as settled as I had hoped.
A Dalmation WHO EATS chocolate and vanilla ice-cream!!!
It’s settled again. Tada.
Very nice changes you made. . .That was a blogful.
I, too, started my blog because an agent told me to, but then I just started liking it and doing what I wanted to do. I will NEVER have a brand because I’m too peripatetic, jumping from topic to topic like a flea. And, yes, I did once write a post about fleas. I’m enjoying your writing immensely.
Fleas? Heading over to see what you did with that one!! Not even flea-bitten motels? Just straight to fleas?! Thanks so much for the comment and never ever brand peripatetic genius!!
“Pulce: How do I love thee – let me count the ways” is the flea post. And thanks for the words of support.
I am not old! I’ve just been living longer!
Really! That’s how people need to start phrasing the question. Not “How old are you?” But “So how long have you been living now?”
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Truly funny. You are so creative with the tag lines. Younger readers may just be looking for the quick blog tweets and I think you have created a terrific niche for yourself. I laughed my blog off.
Thank you. That was a great last line, yourself!
Can you provide a map to your land of inspiration? Holy crap. Another one knocked outta the park.
Does that mean I get to sell another template on EBay? ;-). You’re a complete doll for saying that and I love LOVE your blog today!!!!
I want a Blogan! I’d love to hear what you come up with for me lol
Oh Jane…. You’re gonna be fun–tricky, but fun!!
I am never speechless and I am now.
Uh oh. Being speechless can be for good or bad causes. I certainly hope I haven’t offended?
No, I was speechless cause I nothing I could add. You nailed it.
You are very kind. Thank you so much.
“Are You My Blogger?”
“May The Blog Be With You!”
After I was Freshly Pressed (and you will be too – it’s only a matter of time) I was inundated with readers, and some of them were downright FREAKY, with really unsettling domain names and even stranger comments. So be careful what you wish for!!!
Also – I have found that there are 2 sets of bloggers: some who do it to write about interesting topics, and issues (like you and I). Like this post for example. You took an interesting observation and had fun with it! Excellent!
2nd set of bloggers are the ones who write about what they did this past weekend. It’s like an extension of Facebook. I have found these types of blogs are the busiest with the most comments and readers. Go figure!
Okay. Where is my Blogan? 😉
“Yo Quiero Underground Writer!” You are absolutely spot on! My novel has a “Be careful what you wish for” premise, so I definitely believe in that and in real life practice extreme gratitude. Also my own observations (thus far on WordPress) also replicate what you say about bloggers and I can only HOPE to fall into the same set as you. Anyone reading this comment needs to immediately click on The Underground Writer’s blog– comedic genius!
Ps. Blogan heading your way!
Comedic Genius?? I am beyond flattered. My husband uses that term for Larry David. I can’t wait to tell him I am the female version of that – but with cleaner language.
PS: I would love to read your novel! I hope to read it, freshly printed, by Random House or Harper Collins someday!
How sweet of you. It’s already out. Barnes & Noble online or Amazon (free shipping?) just google “Lullabies & Alibis.” And just so you know, I refer to Larry David as that as well but you’re the first woman I would say is his counterpart. And yes, a far more hygienic version! But don’t leave your husband for a man who tolerates people like he tolerates lactose.
I don’t see why you’re complaining.
Most of my regular commenters are older than me, which is great. It means I’m always the young one.
And if you want to become a published author, old people are a lucrative audience. They have money and, in the final analysis, there’s not all that much else to do in a nursing home besides read.
But if you insist on targeting a younger crowd, may I suggest a Miley Cyrus header? Then you could change your tagline to “I came in like a wrecking ball,” which might actually work for you. The current purple kind of reminds me of old lady hair… 😉
Yikes, I need to rewrite that if it came off as true complaining, rather than just expressing my desire to expand. Remember how we first met and I was also complaining (oh yeah, I guess I DO complain!) about feeling locked in to writing only humor? I suppose this post came from an extension of that. I don’t like the boxes I make for myself, attempting to find my niche.
Then again, it could just be that I am having a “mid-life blogsis” (I refuse to turn 50 in a month) and so perhaps I will adorn this blog with gold chains, a red sports car and make it jump out of a plane with a parachute on to relive its youth. Certainly, the first thing I need to do is get rid of it’s “purple hair!” Blech. Someone very clever once suggested I let it go with a natural gray strand background…. Hmmm.
I’m just messin’ with ya… even though you are the same age as my uncles and aunts. (See? Not all of your readers are old.)
Bumblepuppies, you’re a complete enigma to me and I realize that’s the idea, but I must admit I never know just quite how to take you. I am only grateful you wrote Aunt (did I really need to hear Uncle?!) and not your grandmother.
Ps. If I were to come in on a wrecking ball, which direction should I enter?
No need to be grateful, seeing as you’re much younger than my grandmother.
As for your PS, well, may I suggest entering towards your blog?
Off the charts creative; I can’t even compete. Dammit. :>
An incredible comment for me to regain consciousness to. The fact that it came from someone with a blog like yours only served to knock me out again! Thank you.
You are too kind and very welcome. :>