Friday 29 June 2012

Social Media Is Hard And Confusing

When I first started this blog about nine months ago, I didn’t really think anyone would read it. Realizing that people DO read my blog has given me so much joy and a great sense of purpose over the past months. I’m really lucky that the large-cup-size lingerie blogging community is really small and supportive, so I’ve been able to grow an awesome readership in a pretty short time.

Still, I’m not exactly a high roller. No company has ever tried to send me a free product to review (gosh, I wonder if that’s because of the threatening name of my blog… ha ha). I’ve been invited to a “press event” exactly once—someone forwarded the invite to the Gok Wan shapewear event to my email, but I had class that day and oh, oops, I also don’t wear shapewear. (Well, I wear shapewear leggings because they’re more opaque.) It would have been inconvenient and dishonest for me to attend that event, as well as not very useful because so many other bloggers already wrote about it. So I didn’t worry about not going to that event, and I don’t really think I’m missing much by not going to other press events because they’re not as appropriate to my blog’s content as they are for lots of other people. But I admit I sometimes get a thinner skin than usual and feel hurt when companies don’t invite me to their press events. And then I have to put on my big girl pants and move on with my life.

Here’s how I justify this. My blog is not about companies, it’s about my readers. I want to help people while simultaneously being amusing and irreverent. I usually don't focus as much on pressuring or promoting companies as I do on sharing my excitement or disappointment with certain products, and trying to figure out who would like them or hate them (not simply whether I personally like them or hate them, as I thought I'd be doing when I started this blog). That’s what drives me to write my blog—I love writing, I love feeling useful, and I have a fairly large amount of information and knowledge on large-cup-size bras. If I knew about mountain biking or cupcake baking, I’d try to write a useful blog about those things. That’s why I make a priority of posting often and responding to comments and emails.

Things I HAVEN’T spent any time focusing on are my sad, abandoned Twitter, and my totally nonexistent blog Facebook page. I don’t really understand Twitter and I’ve never fully figured out how to use it. The whole Twitter concept sort of bums me out because it makes me feel like a 95-year-old great-grandmother who has managed to sort of figure out email—the best thing you can say is “At least she’s online at all!” As for having a Facebook fan page for my blog, I haven’t done it because I just feel like it would take up a lot of time that I’d rather spend writing actual blog posts.

Then again, I can’t QUITE give up on my dream of becoming fabulously famous and popular and having hundreds of thousands of people, including random celebrities, reading and promoting my blog! (I’m pretty sure most of us cling to this dream.) And so I sometimes wonder if I might increase my readership by making better use of social media. I like to think that by striving to post regularly and (hopefully) intelligently, I will naturally grow and maintain a loyal readership, and that’s been overwhelmingly true so far. (Thanks, awesome readers!) But I also wonder if there are some more awesome, loyal readers out there who have just never seen my blog at all because I don’t connect over social media much.

Awesome, loyal readers, I would love to know YOUR view. Do you often discover new blogs through social media? Would you find it fun and interesting if I cobbled together some kind of Facebook fan page? Does anyone REALLY read Twitter? (Yeah, yeah, I know everyone except me reads Twitter…)

The other pertinent question is blog design/layout. One of my friends recently made an offhand comment “Yeah, you really need to work on a design update for your blog”, as though it was wearing leg warmers and playing PacMan, or something. My design is admittedly pretty craptastic right now, I sort of just used the first template that popped up and I am only now figuring out that there are ways to add a more interesting or original background. I’m thinking I will add my own background (like maybe gray and white stripes?). BUT, I know that personally I always feel a little sad when blogs update their layout. I just don’t really like change. Plus, I have this odd attachment to having a really low-tech and simple design. So I’m wondering if anyone else has a similar attachment or if more technical updates would make the reading experience more pleasurable. (Like do people wish I had a bigger font? Do you crave more tabs?)

If you have any thoughts on this, please let me know in the comments… thanks a million for that, and for reading my blog to begin with. It honestly means more to me than I can ever express. 


  1. I read Twitter, I am addicted. And yes I have discovered new bloggers from it. It's also nice to be able to share between blog posts and just to chat, Also with a twitter app on your phone you can tweet from almost anywhere.

    I usually read your posts in Google Reader so I don't have may thoughts about it. If I were you I'd only bother changing it if you decide to try and build a brand eg make it and the background to your twitter account match. I've done that on my professional blog & twitter account

  2. I think you shouldn't worry about your layout or social media. I do believe that writing good regular posts (just like you're doing!) is the key to success. I like your blog just the way it is. :-)

    I also appreciate your independency. Sometimes I feel that lingerie blogging scene has become a bit too commercial with all the free products and press events. That does bother me a bit since I think this part of blogosphere is all a bout women taking power to themselves from the companies.

    That being said, I wouldn't mind free samples myself. So I do understand what you mean! :D

  3. Jame (@jameane)29 June 2012 at 13:45

    I used to have a lot more time for social media, and discovered more stuff on twitter. I spend a bit more time on Twitter than facebook. At least reading content. I am more selfish in my facebook, if it doesn't mention me I don't see it. ;)

    But most blogs I discover either via links on ones I read or because I was searching for a topic and your post came up.

    Your posts are great, as long as they are semi-regular, I keep reading. I subscribe in google reader.

  4. I think a more exciting design could be fun, but I too read in Google Reader so it doesn't really matter to me. :)

    If I have a blog I follow in GR, I usually don't bother to add them on FB as well - they tend to just have the same content cross-posted and I don't need duplicates. Twitter is good for engaging your readers, but I would say only do it if you have the time/energy to actually respond to them. I would also say that quality, regular content is really the key - and engaging with your audience too!

  5. I found your blog via someone trying to help me find a good bra for my ultra narrow forward-set shoulders and large-ish chest. I'd say that having a Facebook page and a Twitter account are entirely up to you--personally, I don't use them even though I have accounts with both. (I know, I'm an uncool 20-something...) As for your blog background, I personally don't think there's anything wrong with it. It's way better than those blogs filled with crappy ads that take an eternity to load and look more like a spam site than someone's personal blog. I like your to-the-point style, and I appreciate your content and the trouble you go to when making a post.

    All that is basically to say, you're doing fine. If you want to do more, that's up to you, but hopefully you won't clutter the layout with lots of craptastic ads. Hopefully that didn't sound overly bitchy. I like your blog and hope that you'll keep up the good work! :-)

  6. I read quite a few lingerie/large cup based blogs and by far yours is my favorite. I like that it is user friendly and easy. I'm not so super hi tech. Also I check for new posts often, and am always pleased to see you have written something. I also like that you write for your readers not companies. I never feel like you are trying to sell me something.It doesn't hurt that you're clever and amusing. Keep up the good posts, thanks.

  7. I am not that into social media either. I have a facebook account but I don't obsessively post and I do not and will not ever get a Twitter account. I don't understand Twitter at all. I found your blog through other big bust blogs. I'm pretty obsessed with bras like a lot of girls with bigger cups. I think your blog is great and it is definitely up there with my favorites (I read a lot of big bust blogs). I find your posts very useful and well written. I am not concerned at all with the layout. I agree with another comment that your layout is user friendly. The content is top quality so nothing else really matters to me. I say go with your gut. I feel your blog is strong enough on its own to grow without the help of facebook and twitter.

  8. I read blogs through facebook pages mostly. I rarely log into blogger or google to check the blogs in my reader. Maybe I'll do it more often if I ever get around to blogging more myself.

  9. BTW the leg warmers, Pac Man comment was hilarious.

  10. I blogged for over 2 years before companies deigned to start sending me press releases, much less free lingerie.

    Being independent and ignored by the industry is a gift because it gives you a chance to shape your voice and choose your readership without being influenced by outside factors like what lingerie companies want to read. Even now, I miss out on a ton of "opportunities" because I don't let companies decide what we're going to say about them on the blog.

    Keep writing great content and building an amazing fanbase, and eventually the lingerie industry will have no choice but to pay attention to you. And that's the truth.

    But a template update wouldn't hurt either. ;-)

  11. I don't care about the look of ur blog, I want info, and lots of it! Like for example, got my first online order and I'm having problems with my new bras, I hate them so much! U gave em good reviews (I saw ur post after I ordered and was pretty thrilled with the fact that u have given them good reviews) but I think I might of gotten the wrong size or something? Why is my bra all the way under my armpit, and pointy, and itchy, and giving me more armpit fat than my way too small target bras, is it supposed to be that way? Is it just me or are European bras don't have enough padding for their wires at all?! Keep up the good work, and plz help me!
    Oh, and btw, a FB page couldn't hurt to update us and tell it's u have a new blog post, I'll simply click on the link when I see it :D

  12. Your bra blog is my favorite. And I read all of the large cup blogs compulsively....much like I try new bras, in my quest for that elusive holy grail trifecta of fit/beauty/comfort. So far I've only ever managed to get 2 of 3. Anyhoo, your posts are always interesting, & often hilarious. A term that will echo forever: elf shoe boob.

    FWIW: I -like- your format. It's comfy, like stopping by a friend's place. And I find Twitter the most bizarre & annoying idea ever. I mean, the concept is basically that people will find it fascinating to have random bursts of semi-filtered thoughts spewed at them ADD-style. Whuh...? Ditto F'book to a lesser extent. It's no longer the fun it once was; I find I'd rather sit down & read an email, or great blog, these days.

    And not least, you're one of the (very) few who give a negative, yet balanced, review. You'll note exactly why it doesn't work for you, & enumerate why it might be great for another shape. Oh, & did I mention you're very funny? :o). Blog on, Hater, blog on.

  13. Nope, I do not ever discover blogs through social media. I usually discover them through google or another blog that I read.

    I also don't actually care what a blog looks like, I care about what is in it.

    I personally really, really like your blog BECAUSE you are not sponsored by a lingerie company and therefore won't spout a lot of BS. I often disagree with you, but I respect your candor. A very popular lingerie blog has entirely lost its appeal to me because the authors have so obviously become shills for lingerie companies.

    I do have a twitter account, but I don't use it for bra stuff. I don't use it very often anymore at all, in fact, because I've been busy and the Twitter client I used to use for my phone sucks now.

  14. I think you should do what makes you most comfortable. :)

    I personally like using social media but I also like bugging companies to change their fit policies, add more sizes etc and I've found that facebook and twitter are the most effective way to do that (and make them aware that there are problems in the first place). So I think it comes down the point of your blog and what you're trying to achieve, if that makes sense.

    I've never gotten free samples from companies, although I have won a few free things in contests that I've entered (and I enter a lot because being in Brazil it's a way that I can try new brands that I otherwise wouldn't be able to). Honestly, I'd be pretty shocked if a company did want to partner with me. Because of my location it would make it extremely impracticable when there already a number of great bloggers in both the states and UK. So no big events for me either. ;)

    I do get some emails from companies. Mostly it's been weight loss things that I've either politely turned down or just ignored (depending on the email) because it doesn't really mesh with the philosophy of my blog.

    I decided to put ads up,though, to try to help with shipping costs and all the money I've earned from there I've used to buy new bras to review (granted, it's only been enough to buy about one bra, though!). I also ended up changing my format simply because the old one was annoying me. The current one is starting to get on my nerves too so maybe I'll change it again. I will say the one good thing about changing your template is that it distinguishes you from other blogs. Your current one is fairly commonly used so it doesn't really set apart your blog as much.

  15. the design of your blog is just fine!

    1. I agree :) I don't think I would like grey on a bra blog.

  16. Hi, I read your blog. :-)
    I have never really got the hang of Twitter either. I think its because the time of day I go on and by the time I've got on I've usually missed current conversations and interactions, so I'm pretty naff where Twitter's concerned. I do use my Facebook page. It probably is a good idea to start adopting one of the social media sites just to push out your blog to a wider audience.

    I also wouldn't feel pressured about changing your blog template or anything if you are happy. There are many templates out there which are pretty clean and neat if you don't like busy looking blogs, but you shouldn't feel you have to change anything. Your blog is your space and it's important to remember its what you enjoy doing and take enjoyment from, it's not really about what other people are doing.

    I love writing myself, that's why I write my blog. Plus I love lingerie so it goes nicely hand in hand. You're doing a great job. :-)

    Becky x

  17. Oh, maybe I didn't make myself clear on my last comment, could u please write a blog about how a bra should and shouldn't fit, I'm really having a hard time with my first online purchase, I think the cup is too wide and flat for me and it's literally under my armpit half way so I can't wear any tanks or spaghetti strings because it's all the way up where my arm separates from my chest. I'm supposed to be a 24 band size but all I could find is a 28 so I went two cup sizes down. I see all the models wearing their bras all the way up there as well, but I can't tell if it's under their arm as well (underwire), it literally makes my boobs go to the side. I Hope u can help me, I'm sure I'm not the only one with questions on how these things should fit.
    Thank u :)

  18. I think simple pink is good :) Though, perhaps make a header with something a bit more personalized, like a doodle, or a little collage or something, if you do want to 'update it'
    Also, I would prefer no facebook page! I always feel like I may be missing out on all those blogs who run on several social medias because I can't keep up, lol!
    I have actually thought about that you probably scare of some companies with the blog name... "As seen on Bras I Hate" just doesn't sound like a recommendation ;) But we (your readers) like you! :D So keep it up! And yes, it's very nice how often you update, it does keep readers, I think. Some blogs are so long between updates that I forget them by the time they write the next post.

  19. I don't use Facebook or Twitter, basically for the same reason that others say they don't use it.

    Ultimately your blog will be successful because of who you are and how you put your personal stamp on the blog. And that Treacle lady? She knows what she is talking about.

    I recently got into Tumblr and it has some easy simple features that help spread the word about blogs. Tumblr makes it easy to reblog and that is the best way to find out about blogs. So, don't be afraid to trade links with other resources. And, don't be afraid to have "interviews" with knowledgeable people. Treacle has done both of those things, and, it seems to make her blog the place to go to keep current on things.

    Pics are always attention grabbers, and, I like when the blogger shows pics of bras on herself showing how/why a bra doesn't fit properly.

    Your blog doesn't need to have fancy features or bold design. Just make sure that things are easy to use and that things don't look/function "bad".

    I agree that the name of your blog can be confusing, so, it might be worth the effort to make light of it and provide an easy-to-find explanation of what it means.

  20. Of all of the large cup / small band bra blogs out there, yours is by far my favorite! I only discovered myself to be a member of the small band/large cup crew at a fitting a few months ago, and I've learned so much about shape, styles and fit by reading it. Your approach to bra critiques is infinitely more useful than the sort that gushes over the prettiness of each new model to crop up. I'll bet the latter sort attracts far more company freebies, but please keep up your awesome ways!

  21. I love your bra blog. I am on FB and Twitter too, but I discovered your blog through another bra blog, and I love it. You are a good writer, clear and informative about the bras you hate (I feel the same) and the ones you love.
    I think of you like a friend and I read your blog as I would read one of my friends'.
    Thank you for the useful pages, I followed some of your advices and I am happy with it.
    You are doing a great job.

  22. I think I found your blog because it was linked on another blog I was reading (and I was reading that one because they had a review of BiuBiu). I don't remember the other blog, but I kept reading yours, because the information you provide is very beneficial to me. I want no-nonsense, detailed reviews on different models and brands of bras, from someone who understands how different bra shapes are affected by different cuts (in other words, someone who understands better than the bra industry does!). I want someone who can tell me which bras have the same cuts (since the industry insists on changing the name when they change the look, and doesn't bother to say what model it is based on!), and if a bra runs small in the band or small in the cup. If there are some new brands of bras or clothes, I want to hear about them. The information I look for should be widely available, but it's very hard to find, which is why I appreciate your in-depth reviews.

    I don't care if you're on Twitter or Facebook. A blog is a good place for writing longer, more detailed commentary, which doesn't fit in either of those two places. I don't need giveaways. I don't care what the blog looks like, either, so long as it doesn't hurt my eyes.

  23. Err, that should have read 'different breast shapes are affected'.

  24. You blog is my favourite bra blog - you have taught me and amused me so much. The design is fine - simple and effective, I am so pleases that you are continuing the blog since you returned to the states.

  25. I found your blog through Twitter. I think someone there (Boosurous maybe) shared one of your posts. I related to your blog because you have a similar shape to me. I like to come look for a review before I order, just to see what you honestly think. The honesty is the best (I just totally typed breast, lol) part, it is reader friendly period.

    I have a facebook because a few people I know in real life wanted to be able to catch updates and such. Now I use it to share other blog posts I think they may be interested in, sales I find, funny photos, or just ask questions. Twitter, I could keep it or leave it. I seem to go in cycles with it. I feel like you have a hidden gem in your blog (what I hope mine to be). I like distinctive voices, those that fill a void in the blog world. I started blogging when I couldn't find anything about bra fit and implants, trying to fill a void myself.
    Bottom line, keep going with what you like and build your fan base. I am slowly doing the same, I still get excited on the days my blog breaks 200 views. And as for products to try, I've never been offered either. I have gotten spammy messages trying to get me to do free advertising though. And the template update, I'm guilty of that one too! I'm just not up to date on technology and something like changing my blog template is a little harder then what I'd like to mess with.

  26. I enjoy your blog very much just as it is. I read via Google Reader, so I don't see your design anyway, just the content, which is consistently excellent. That's what keeps me coming back. Also, I don't do twitter at all, and don't mix my blogging and my facebooking, so please don't bother on my account. :-)

    Thank you for being a voice for us big-cupped, small-banded ladies out there!

  27. I'll chime in as another voice to say that I found your blog through google searches, not through social media. I mostly use facebook to keep up with friends instead of actual networking, although I do share my blog posts on it, so maybe I'm hypocritical :) But I agree with the others to say that if Twitter isn't for you, I wouldn't fret. Lots of your loyal readers come back again and again because they want to read your writing and your voice, not because Twitter is smacking us on the back of the head with reminders.

  28. If you haven't already, you could check out ! You can't promote yourself on reddit, but it is an avenue to give advice to lots more people. And you might be surprised how many times your blog has been linked to by others over there, already!

  29. I feel similarly about my blog, but let me tell you, if I wrote a post like this, I wouldn't have as many comments on it as you have! I found your blog via another bra blog, but I also adore Twitter because I follow people I consider to be either trendmakers or otherwise highly connected people, and I've found tons of blogs through Twitter/Facebook links and from reading other blogs.

  30. I recently found your blog when I Googled in hopes of a US distributer of the Panache Sports Bra. Even though you were not a fan of the bra (I'm still going to give it a shot), I did find your review interesting so I've been reading more. Though I am in my thirties, I am learning lots from your blog and have new things to look for next time I go bra shopping.

    As to social media, I rarely find anything of interest that way but I recognize I am in the extreme minority. If you want to turn your blog into a full-time success your just going tohave togothat way, but blogspot works for a hobby. Guess it depends on your goals and ambitions...

  31. I am a computer lover and a geek and am by no means new to the internet. Yet I despise social networking. I have no Fakebook page, don't have anything to do with Twiddle or any of them. Google has been my master for nearly 13 years and has never failed me in finding information about any of my interests yet.

    From a programmer's POV: I love simple yet effective designs for programs/web pages etc. As long as the site works, is informative and clearly laid out (which I feel yours is) I'm a happy camper. More frills just equals longer load times and more CPU time. I realise that some are impressed with fancy frills but I find them a waste of resources and kinda pointless.

    In the end this is your page to do with as you wish. As long as the info is here I will keep on reading. Thank You for all your hard work. Speaking as someone who barely has time to comment much less blog I am very appreciative for what you and all informative bloggers do! =D