I’m Daniel, and I founded BlogTasting.com because I love blogs. The name “blog tasting” is a little different, so before you think I’m licking the screen, let me give you some background:
The MySpace Era
It’s 2005, and MySpace is the #1 social media platform. I discover that MySpace tells me how many people look at my posts. Then I realize that if I connect to more people, more people will be notified of my posts and some will read them. I started following friending people in Russia, Australia, England, India. And some of them would read and comment on my posts. Amazing! For the first time, I had a connection to people outside my immediate circle to share my thoughts and ideas.
Then I heard that some people were blogging on their own domain names, because they could put ads on their site and earn money from the visitors.
The Blogspot Era
My first Blogspot was born. I wrote my articles on the blogspot and linked to it from my MySpace page. Disappointingly, I noticed that only a small fraction of my readers from MySpace were clicking my links to read the article on Blogspot. They would have read the article on MySpace, but the simple act of clicking away from MySpace was undesirable enough to prevent most of them from reading.
The Move to Self-Hosted WordPress
After a few months, I realized that I’d need a more compelling site to draw readers back once they’d visited the first time. The blog needed to look like a worthwhile destination, and Blogspot wasn’t getting it done.
The problem of income also remained, as ad options and ad control were limited by the Blogspot platform.
I figured out how to buy a domain name and use a self-hosted version of WordPress. Though I had no design or coding skills, I had tons of blog themes to choose from, and I could put my own stamp on the look and feel of my words. By 2006 I was blogging several times a week on my own site, CultureFeast.com (which no longer exists).
Inspired by Gary Vee
In 2009, I heard Gary Vaynerchuk speak at SXSW in Austin, Texas. I started following his video podcast about wine tasting. I never cared for wine, but Gary’s enthusiasm for wine and the way he managed to experience and describe each wine he tasted by associating the flavors and undertones to flavors of things I actually could understand (Skittles, rocks, horseradish, pear, dirt, lemon, Starburst).
I love blogs the way Gary Vee loves wine. When I review a blogs, I get into the technical details and the sensory details. Both matter. A blog needs to capture my attention and give me a reason to stay long enough to read. A really ugly or poorly designed site annoys me to the point I would rather leave the site and visit another one instead. But beyond appearances, there’s execution of ideas, SEO, usability, information architecture, site speed, and a host of other factors.
The point is, I appreciate a well designed blog theme with clever writing. Blog tasting is my version of fine wine tasting. I’m savoring what I love.
If you enjoy blog themes even half as much as I do, subscribe below so you can get the latest blog tastings and savor the flavor with me.