Big Changes!

posted by Andrea | 03/8/2013

SIX YEARS…

It’s officially been 6 years since I filed my first LLC and started my business. This summer, it will be 3 years since I decided to start this blog.

I had NO idea what I was doing or how much work it would be to start a business/blog from scratch (and with a very small budget). However, I also had NO idea how much I would love it, as well as all the opportunities and doors it would open for me.

While I most definitely didn’t start my business with the intention of “sitting on my computer all day”, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t happy with where I’m at right now.

I absolutely LOVE working from home, writing, speaking, interacting with all of you on a daily basis, etc. Yes, it can be stressful and busy at times; yes, I occasionally stay up way too late trying to “get stuff done”; yes, I feel the pull between work and family, family and work; but I also feel fulfilled by the work I do, and I’m excited to do it each day.

However, over the past 6 months, I’ve been thinking long and hard about my blog, my business, my life, my career path… and I’ve decided to make some big changes.

Don’t worry, they’re good changes (at least in my opinion).

I’m not going to share everything just yet, but I’m sharing a fair amount below. Over the next 8-10 weeks, you’ll start noticing a few more of these changes…

1. Giveaways

Some of you have already questioned the lack of “Weekend Giveaways” over the past 3 weeks… it’s all part of the changes.

For the past 2 years, I’ve hosted a giveaway almost every single Friday morning. I love hosting these giveaways because it’s an opportunity for me to share some really cool products with all of you (and in most cases, try out the products for myself!)

However, as my blog continues to grow and expand, I’m beginning to feel inundated by review and giveaway requests. Most of the requests are from awesome companies with fabulous products… but it’s SO much work to host giveaways, review products, moderate comments, contact winners, and then deal with issues that may arrise.

So as much as we all love giveaways, I’ll be scaling back a little bit. I won’t be hosting regular weekend giveaways every Friday, but I WILL still be doing some giveaways now and then — in fact, I have a pretty fun giveaway planned for next week already!

And since I still like to share my favorite products with you, I’m planning to share “A Few of my Favorite Things” with you once a month.

2. Blogging Schedule

I have been writing 6-8 blog posts a week for my own blog and then another 2-3 posts per week for other blogs. That’s A LOT of writing on top of all the other work I do. I like writing, and I love blogging, but I’ve decided to scale back just a bit in order to align with my 2013 goal of Ultra Simplicity.

At least for the time being, I’m going to scale back to 5 posts per week on my own blog and only 1 post a week for other blogs. Of course, there may be weeks when I have more to say and end up posting more frequently, but since I don’t want to clutter up your lives with too many posts, I’m planning to write one post a day Monday-Friday and take the weekends off.

The content of my posts will be the same — all about simplifying and organizing for real families in real homes with real lives on real budgets.

3. Social Media

If you follow me on Twitter, you may have noticed that I recently changed my Twitter name from @LivingOrganized to @Andrea_Dekker. It’s a small change (especially since I rarely make an appearance on Twitter these days) but still a change.

I’ll also be making some changes to my facebook page… but probably not for a few more weeks.

4. Rebranding = new name and logo!

OK, so this is a biggie. And this is the scary part for me right now.

I’ve worked my butt off over the past several years to brand my business (and then my blog) as “Simple Organized Living”. However, over the past year, I’ve started to notice that these words — simple and organized — are being over-used around the blogosphere.

Simple Organized ________ (Home, Life, Family, Mom, Finances, Budget, etc.)

SimplY Organized ________ (Home, Life, Family, Mom, Finances, Budget, etc.)

Simple AND Organized _______ (Home, Life, Family, Mom, Finances, Budget, etc.)

It’s confusing and also a little frustrating for me as most of these names were registered after I registered my name and after I filed my business LLC.

What’s even more frustrating is when I’m introduced incorrectly — “Andrea Dekker from SimplY Organized Living” or “Andrea Dekker from “Simple AND Organized Living” — NOPE sorry, that’s not me. That’s another blogger/business who simply chose a different noun or added a conjunction so their name is technically legal.

Yes, I could pay thousands of dollars to trademark my name and fight back against all these other blogs, but honestly, I don’t think it’s worth the cost and the hassle. Plus, I’ve always had a few reservations about using such a long blog name.

I love “Simple Organized Living.” I love what it stands for, what it represents, what it portrays about the content you will find on the pages of my blog… but I’m moving on.

The blog will stay put, the content will remain the same, and the over-all look and feel of the blog will hold true. But in a few weeks, there will be a new name, a new URL, a new logo, and a new tag line (which I’m all sorts of crazy about!)

My tech guys are working behind the scenes to make the transition as smooth as possible — but if you experience a hiccup or an issue sometime in the next 2 months, you’ll know why. You may feel free to send me an email if you are concerned.

 

Ahhh…

I don’t like change — even when it’s a good change!

Change scares me, but I’m confident that in the long run, these changes will be for the best.

Wish me luck!

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50 comments

  1. Elizabeth | ReadySetSimplify

    03/08/2013

    These sound like great changes. Good for you! I can’t wait to see what the new blog name is!

    [Reply]

  2. Chelsea

    03/08/2013

    LOL My first thought was you were pregnant. :)

    Your blog is the only one I’ve really looked forward to seeing on a daily basis. I think it’s fabulous you are taking weekends off. Family time is so important. There shouldn’t be any negative feedback on something like this. I think those of us that enjoy your blog, and all you put into it,
    wishes nothing but the best for you, your family and your business.

    [Reply]

  3. Aleda

    03/08/2013

    Best wishes Andrea! I am not organized and never will be but I like reading about organizing! lol I receive emails from some of those other blogs, but my brain has learned that when I see your name, it’s Nora’s Mom!! I love your style and content and look forward to your changes.

    [Reply]

  4. Janet

    03/08/2013

    Best wishes! Followers will be automatically shifted, I hope. I’d hate to lose you! You can see from the lengths of my email and blog titles they need changing-way too long. Very naive and silly when I did them, thinking I was following guidelines/suggestions. Live and learn.
    Janet

    [Reply]

  5. Donna G

    03/08/2013

    Yours is the one blog I read every day, even if I don’t get a chance to read any others. And while our lives are vastly different, I am inspired by you. Thanks. I look forward to the changes!

    [Reply]

  6. Sara H.

    03/08/2013

    I have loved reading your blog Andrea! If you ever need to hire another writer, give me a call! I’m sure CCHS could continue without me :)

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    haha thanks Sara! Dave told me about your good deals on groceries :)

    [Reply]

    Sara H. Reply:

    Yes, I have turned into quite the extreme couponer and bargain shopper. I would have never thought I would love a good deal so much! I can’t believe how much $ we wasted for so long!

    [Reply]

  7. Tammy @ SkipperClan

    03/09/2013

    My first thought was good for you! My next thought was: I would be so angry/stressed out about completely changing the name, lol. Final thought was totally selfish, I reference your blog all the time…I’m gonna have a lot of broken links to update ;) Seriously wishing you all the best~!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Tammy — and you shouldn’t have to change any of your links because each link should automatically re-route to the same post on the “new” blog (that’s what my tech guys are working on!)

    [Reply]

  8. Chris

    03/09/2013

    I just want to say I love your blog. It’s one of my daily reads. (It’s too bad that some people have to stoop so low). :(

    [Reply]

  9. marymac

    03/09/2013

    Hi, I have been reading your blog for a long time now and look forward to all your interesting and inspiring posts. I am sure all the changes will look great and look forward to seeing them.
    Many thanks for all the hard work you put into your blog!

    [Reply]

  10. Autumn

    03/09/2013

    Andrea, I am SO proud of you! To be honest, I did NOT like the sound of the title “Big Changes!” LOL! My first thought was you were going to stop blogging and focus on a different aspect of your business! SO glad I was wrong. I have seen this trend amongst some of my favorite bloggers, and I’m always impressed. You realize the strain of giveaways, number of posts per week and you modify. Instead of burning out and quitting altogether! SO, so smart. And having a marketing background, I LOVE the thought of re-branding! SO exciting! Cannot wait to see what you are cooking up! :) Oh! And I LOVE the “Favorite Things” feature BECAUSE it’s not sponsored. Not that you would be dishonest about products. I know you wouldn’t promote anything you didn’t like. But the fact that there has been absolutely no personal gain from promoting these products makes me know you are wholehearted in your love for them. :) So, thanks so much – once again – for a fabulous blog and congratulations on all of these wonderful changes! It is obvious why you are such a successful business owner. And oh my gosh…ONE more thing – I promise! CONGRATULATIONS on your HGTV Magazine spread! I’m a subscriber and just got my new issue today. SO COOL to see you and your family in there! And so fun to read about your house. I didn’t know how meant-to-be the whole process was! You really should mention this to your readers. :) Okay, I’m done. Peace out!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Autumn! I think I’ll be sticking with blogging for a while, so don’t worry about me leaving my little corner of the online world! I’ll be talking about the HGTV magazine spread soon :)

    [Reply]

  11. Maria

    03/09/2013

    Andrea, thank you for all your hard work.! You certainly are a blessing with all the wonderful tips you have. I have learned so much and yet I’ve only just discovered your blog a few weeks ago. I especially love your simple and delicious recipes. Best wishes on whatever changes you decide to make; I’m sure they will be great! God bless you.

    [Reply]

  12. Courtney

    03/09/2013

    I’m excited about the changes. I love your new “Favorite things” and I’m looking forward to find out the new name! Best of luck and thanks for all you do! :)

    [Reply]

  13. Tara

    03/09/2013

    Sounds like you’re making positive strides in positive directions. Nothing but best wishes from me to you on all these changes. I too am here for the inspiration and the very easy to implement organizational ideas. In fact I just finished filling out your “Important Info” binder PDF and it was all the giveaway I needed to feel great about being a subscriber to your blog.

    Your giveaways are fun and I like to see the products you love, but I think your Favorite Things posts will actually do a better job of showing us what you really love and be much less work for you. I don’t care if you never do another giveaway. :-) Just keep inspiring us to plug away steadily at getting our lives organized and simplified. Can’t wait to see your new brand/blog name!

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  14. krisna

    03/10/2013

    wow!we’re so excited for this, andrea.

    [Reply]

  15. Emily

    03/12/2013

    Congrats!! I absolutely love your blog. i check it daily. I will agree with some of the other commentors. I felt a small amount of anxiety when I read the title of the post. However, after reading, I completely understand your choices.

    With all your experience, what do you think is the most important thing(s) a person should consider when they are choosing a name they intend to brand?

    Best of luck.

    [Reply]

  16. Kalyn Brooke

    03/12/2013

    So sad about your name! I love Simple Organized Living, but totally understand the frustration. Sometimes, it’s just not worth it! Looking forward to seeing the ReBrand.

    [Reply]

  17. Katie

    03/14/2013

    Did I just spy the new site name of SIL through this link?? http://www.ourfifthhouse.com/2013/03/one-of-incredibles.html If yes, I love it already! And if not, can’t wait to find out what it is :) PS: Our Fifth House is another one of my favorite blogs; it was so cool to click over there and see your icon!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    No Katie — that’s still my current name / logo “Simple Organized Living”. If you’re referring to the “Organize me Pretty” words under my logo, I honestly have no idea what those words are for :)

    I was interviewed as part of that series so maybe she’s calling my interview “Organize Me Pretty” — but seriously, I don’t know! Maybe I should know :) Haha!

    Not my new blog name… but you’ll find out soon enough!!!

    [Reply]

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