Why I love BlogRush, and you shouldn’t

The entire premiss of REMBEX is to find RE bloggers, get them to share their experiences, and encourage other RE professionals to take on blogging themselves. For this reason, BlogRush, the latest social networking widget that’s sweeping the blogosphere is perfect for this blog. RBF is all about other bloggers, and displaying headlines form related blogs makes good sense. I also think it’s great that all sorts of other RE bloggers are displaying this widget, but not for any reasons that would be helpful to them.

I’ve been surfing BlogRush all week. I’m always on the prowl for new (to me) RE blogs to ad to the REMBEX search engine. So when I see an unfamiliar name listed in my little BlogRush widget, I’m off to check it out. Then, when I see a new name in their widget, well away I go again, and again, and again. What fun. I’ve found about 30 new blogs surfing BlogRush this week. As the week progressed, I came across the many popular RE blogs that are displaying BlogRush (BloodHound, Geek Estate, RE Revealed, Transparent Real Estate, and Phoenix Real Estate Guy) with greater, and greater regularity.

What’s apparent to me is that BlogRush’s pyramid scheme will likely benefit these blogs going forward, but it will be at the expense of their own readers. Just like RBF, the majority of the above listed blogs are read by other RE professionals, many of which have their own local blogs for consumers. One mistake that many local bloggers make is to use these blogs as an example of how to make their own blog better.

Joe blogger goes onto Transparent Real Estate, sees the cool little widget, and wants it for his blog. There’s a good chance he’ll miss that Pat Kitano sees little value in it, as the big shiny button has his attention. Joe blogger clicks on the “add your blog posts” link, installs his widget, and starts earning traffic points for himself, and for Transparent RE. Cool beans right? What is there to loose?

How about one listing? Or even one buyer prospect?

Think about the value of traffic you have earned on your own versus the value of traffic that this widget provides. Consider the potential client that finds your local blog through Google. They are on your site in search of information that you very likely are able to provide. But before they find it, they see a catchy headline in that widget, and off they go. Once they get to that next page, they may find the new article to be good, bad, or most likely inapplicable to what they were searching for. The question is, will they click back to you, or start a new search, or click on another link in the BlogRush widget? All of these options aren’t nearly as good for you as if they had stayed on your blog in the first place.

Now think about the traffic you get in trade from this widget. It’s that same surfer, but in a different market, that liked your flashy headline. So now you have traffic to your blog, but it’s like living on a busy street. All those cars are just speeding by. What’s the use of a dozen visitors from Seattle when your market is Chicago?

Who really benefits here? Blogs like mine will. My readership is national, and each reader represents traffic impressions for my advertisers. I can afford for them to leave as they have already made there impression on my server logs. For you, each of your local visitors represents a possible business transaction that represents thousands of dollars. I think BlogRush is more likely to hurt your real business, than help it. But hey, don’t listen to me. You can join BlogRush by clicking on the bottom of that widget. It’s over there to the left. I’ll be all to happy to receive your traffic referral points.

0 thoughts on “Why I love BlogRush, and you shouldn’t

  1. Jay Thompson

    Had a long comment, lost it. I’ll summarize.

    I’m inclined to agree. I loaded it cause I like to play with new stuff.

    Does it drive traffic?

    2,586 impressions in 7 days.
    2 clicks.

    For me, the widget is too big to fit where I want it, and the colors look bad on my blog.

    Lots of *really* bad stuff showing up too.

    Experiment will be over soon….

    Reply
  2. Ginger Wilcox

    I haven’t loaded it, didn’t care for how it looked, and also thought there was no reason to send people away from my site once they got there! It is hard enough to get them there. My site is very local, so i want the local readers.

    Reply
  3. Maureen M.

    I don’t worry about sending people away from my site, maybe I should. I am testing it. If someone has a local listing or wants to buy a home and has such a short attention span that he starts widget shopping I probably am not going to get any business from him anyway.

    I will hang in longer testing than Jay, I bet although I have had exatly half his success:

    Impressions 4,069 Clicks 1

    I must make a bad impression…

    I have seen sham sites but not anything that would make me take it off immediately.. “*really* bad stuff” …

    BlogRush said the Entertainment category was too broad. I think most of our real estate blogs are too local (for BlogRush), we don’t want local real estate bloggers on our feed, supposedly that can be filtered. Will local readers jump ship when a blog from someplace exotic pops up? Florida, Phoenix, California… maybe… Or when someone blogs about luxury homes? Or discounting? Or rebating? Maybe.

    I agree real estate is one of those categories that Todd and just a few other sites are going to benefit from and I knew that before I put it on as a test. I am not going to change how I write titles on entries to get readers from BlogRush who are not local or looking to become local, so no one is probably ever going to click on my blog. Oh well.

    Reply
  4. Pat Kitano

    Hi Todd,

    Like you, I’m a grand experimenter and will test anything related to blogging and viral marketing… Blogrush is a great case study for this purpose because it received such skyrocket attention – itself a manifestation of its viral marketing power.

    Yes, I’ve received some traffic from Blogrush, but I still uphold that the traffic is similar to that of the Criteo AutoRoll widget. I think the main reason is because the real estate blogosphere is relatively self contained and the RE blog audience is us. Blogs that appeal to a more general audience – Lifehacker, ProBlogger, Techcrunch et al – will benefit from Blogrush’s viral marketing to deliver new readers.

    So my reasoning for the efficacy of Blogrush comes down to “blog real estate and perceived ROI”. Is slapping a Blogrush widget along with an Autoroll widget (and a MyBlogLog widget) just too much?

    I can see how you can use Blogrush to monitor the RE blogosphere that you do so well through Rembex and Blog Fiesta… you’ve created wonderful reference sources for us RE bloggers (and thanks for that!)

    I’ll keep that Blogrush widget up for a while just to test it more.

    Reply
  5. Benn

    Any time a widget imposes itself on a blog and drives little traffic or is impractical, is a sure way to fail- and fast. I never bothered to even signup when it became obvious it added litterally nothing to the conversation on the blog. :/ try again.

    Reply
  6. MaxBlogPress

    I recently developed a free wordpress plugin called “BlogRush Click Maximizer”. By using it you can vastly improve your Click Through Rate.

    This allows you to control what you want to display in BlogRush. You can even write alternate – short and catchy title just for BlogRush.

    You will have total control of what appears over the BlogRush Network.

    Check it out here:
    http://www.maxblogpress.com/plugins/bcm/

    Reply

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