A-List Bloggers Making Excuses For BlogRush

by derek on September 19, 2007 · 27 comments

No doubt you have heard of BlogRush by now.
The hype-train for BlogRush hit a frenzied pace as many of the most well-known bloggers were posting about the new service intended to drive targeted traffic to your blog.
Many of the “B through Z-list” bloggers recognized how the A-list bloggers were advertising the service and building up their referral number so they jumped on board with their own posts. But now that the service has actually launched, I’ve seen a few of the top bloggers trying to rationalize why the traffic numbers are not what they expected.

Poor Headlines

Two of the more well-known bloggers that I read on a regular basis have both indicated that the traffic from BlogRush has been quite a bit less than they expected. In both cases, one possible excuse explanation is that the headlines have been less than enticing.
Darren Rowse from ProBlogger says,

Now that could have something to do with my headlines (although I try to write engaging ones)

John Chow echoes the same sentiment when he said,

Mind you, part of the reason for the low click rate is my fault. I haven’t been using the most captivating headlines for my last few posts.

I’ve been reading both ProBlogger and John Chow dot Com for quite some time and I would not lump them into the category of bloggers that use poor headlines. Is it a coincidence that they both just happened to start writing poor headlines during the launch of BlogRush?
Not likely.

Location of Widget

Both Darren and John also make reference to the location of the BlogRush widget as a possible explanation for the extremely low click-through-rate.
Darren mentions,

…however I suspect it also has something to do with the positioning that a lot of bloggers are using for the widget. I’ve seen a lot of widgets low on pages where I suspect they’ll rarely be seen by readers – let alone clicked.

John relays the same thought when he said,

Another reason for the low click rate is many bloggers are placing the widget in low click sections of their blogs.

The location of the widget seems like a very valid explanation to me. Many bloggers are going to stick the BlogRush widget in an unobtrusive location that is not likely to bring many clicks. While they will be receiving a substantial number of credits and impressions with BlogRush, I suspect the CTR will remain extremely low if the widgets remain relatively hidden.

Is BlogRush a Flop?

While I do not have plans to jump on the BlogRush train at this time, I wouldn’t classify it as a flop because it is still very early in the game. The people at BlogRush will likely try to make their own improvements and bloggers will make their own tweaks to try and improve their CTR.
Time will tell whether or not BlogRush will be successful. One popular blogger, Andy Beal, has given the BlogRush widget 24 hours to prove itself before he removes it from his site.
I’ll admit that I was almost caught up in the hype and wanted to sign up and begin advertising the service here to try and rack up a few referrals. But now that I see A-List bloggers making what I consider to be excuses as to why the traffic from BlogRush is nearly non-existent has made me feel like maybe I haven’t missed anything.
What do you think?

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

BeachBum September 19, 2007 at 11:45 am

As with any program like this there will be a high percentage of people who do not succeede. The only one guaranteed success is John Reese in thinking this thing up and getting it out for the public to use. His investment will be returned with all the valuable data he can collect for bloggers installing the code.


whydowork September 19, 2007 at 12:14 pm

I think your commentary is spot on.
Definitely can be considered a flop for now!


XP Registry Hacks September 19, 2007 at 12:28 pm

I can’t believe the hype surrounded by this – I received so many invites from so many bloggers (using their affiliate link) within days of this service launching! 😥


Dave September 19, 2007 at 12:39 pm

I was thinking this before it launched, but I put it on my site anyway just to see. I’ve had about a thousand impressions display (with like 600 credits left) with 4 clicks. That’s not a very high CTR. When I read John’s post today, I was kinda like, dude, admit it, it’s not working…regardless of your titles.
I think that it’s more about where the widget is located, but more importantly being able to design it match the blog. Right now it looks too much like an advertisement, which of course gives it ad blindness.
I think they need to innovate a more effective way to make it work better.


Stephen September 19, 2007 at 1:22 pm

I think I’ve gotten more of a rush from beer bombing a red bull.


Sebastian September 19, 2007 at 4:33 pm

WTF should I shorten my headlines just because BlogRush is not able to design a widget that at least displays the full title as tooltip? Doh! I’m not excited.


derek September 19, 2007 at 5:19 pm

@BeachBum :: Given the lack of success from the top bloggers, I think the number of people that succeed will be even fewer than normal.
@WhyDoWork :: Thanks, time will tell I guess. BTW, I love the name.
@Saman :: You and me both. The hype was coming from all angles as well.
@Dave :: Thanks for the feedback, it sounds like we both had a similar reaction when reading John’s comments.
@Stephen :: That would have made a nice finish to your Feenie burger!
@Sebastian :: Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. Your comment seems to be a pretty common sentiment from the people I have talked to.


Jordan Mitchell September 19, 2007 at 5:26 pm

Beer bombing a red bull — that’s hilarious.
Here’s a fun challenge for you all. If we don’t provide you with a better click-through rate than BlogRush, we’ll paypal you $10.
We’ve been working on some fun software that is already beating BlogRush on click-through stats (by a lot). I’d like to take advantage of this meme, put some money on the table, earn some valuable feedback, and have some fun.
Details on our blog at http://blog.othersonline.com/2007/09/the-others-onli.html Let the games begin?


Rose September 19, 2007 at 6:24 pm

Personally I’m tired of hearing about Blog Rush. Since they launched forums have been spammed to death with affiliate links for the service.


CrashLab September 19, 2007 at 6:31 pm

No Success No Party 🙂


Jordan Mitchell September 19, 2007 at 6:36 pm

Me too Rose.
Don’t know about you, but that affiliate linking, make money at home, pyramid stuff puts a bad taste in my mouth. Just not my cup of tea, that’s all ….


Lyndon Antcliff September 19, 2007 at 6:54 pm

Blogrush is a bunch of ass. I mean really, who the hell is gonna click on the thing, except me trying to test it.
And it’s so easy to game it will be worthless.


Wendy Piersall September 19, 2007 at 9:16 pm

I heard about it from four people on Sunday – who the heck works on Sundays besides me (oh, bad joke!).
Anyway, after the second mention I was intrigued by the tiered concept. By the third mention I decided to not to bother, because at this rate it would be old news by Monday morning.
I like making a buck, but not at the expense of recycling old news in front of my readers.
I think you’re closer to the truth than anything else by calling this a flop. 🙂


Leo September 19, 2007 at 9:21 pm

It’s free and I just replaced the Spicypage (pretty worthless) widget with the one form Blogrush. Worth a try and it’s like having free advertising, even if people don’t buy your product.


James Pegram September 19, 2007 at 9:40 pm

The jury is probably still out but it’s certainly looking like a flop. I’ve got it running, can’t say it’s done anything but who knows. I’ll give it a few days but unless something dramatic changes, yeah.. probably a well hyped flop.


Derek Anderson September 19, 2007 at 9:54 pm

I don’t see very many people volunteering to look at this thing scientifically. everyone jumps on expecting the entire population of China to show up and click on their widget.
Like they were saying…”is it the loaction” or “My headlines are lacking”
This widget needs to be massaged into giving out its secrets.
Shit…I popped in some adsense code and there wasn’t a check waiting for me at the end of the week. I didn’t dump that. According to the majority of comments, I should have.


swollenpickles September 19, 2007 at 11:36 pm

I decided to give it a shot. Haven’t noticed much difference to my traffic as yet, but I’m willing to give it a bit more time.


Ericae September 20, 2007 at 12:26 am

I don’t know. I don’t think its been out long enough to be such a hit. In the end, the one who came up with it is going to be the one making the money. I don’t think it will be long before a) someone will be able to pay for impressions b) an ad accompanies it.
How much different is this from traditonal link exchange banners?


the subconscious mind September 20, 2007 at 12:43 am

yeah but if darren isnt too thrilled with it i dont think many people are going to adopt it


Ange September 20, 2007 at 8:33 am

I’m just liking my credits for now. To date I have 2482 credits and it’s only been 3 days!!
I’ll just see where it takes me… it’s early days.
Buzzing with Ange


Rose September 20, 2007 at 12:50 pm

Jordan I’m with you there.


Damien Riley September 20, 2007 at 11:16 pm

I got an email and then saw their impressive video on the site and thought I’d give it a go. I’ll let you know what happens but I already notice there are unrelated blogs on my list. I joined the category of personal diary and there are a lot of marketing titles coming up. It’s frankly an ugly widget so it will probably come down unless i meet a lot of new friends through it fast.


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