When I first looked at BlogRush I was reasonably interested in what it had to offer. When I discovered that it involved adding a widget to my page my reaction was "No way am I going to join up, after just culling a host of other widgets from my site." BlogRush kept appearing in posts I was reading and I succumbed to the temptation. I just had to find out for myself what it was all about, widget and all.
What is BlogRush
A blog syndication network designed to bring more readers to your blog.. The widget that you are required to put on your site will display headlines coming from the blogs on the network. You can of course see an example of this in my sidebar (if you scroll down)
How BlogRush Works
Your own post headlines appear on other blogs in proportion to the amount of page views you have had and the number of bloggers you have referred. For example if you have 500 page views a day (I wish) your own headlines will be shown on other member blogs 500 times. If you refer another blog to Blogrush and they get say 500 views per day then your headlines are shown another 500 times. This passes on down the line referrer to referrer for 10 generations - a viral marketing concept. For me this means that to substantially gain traffic from BlogRush I need to sign up someone with much more traffic than myself. Any takers :-)
What's the Gossip
As I have only just joined up and cannot give my own impression of the worth of BlogRush I thought I would have a look round and see what others were saying. I searched for posts via Digg. I discovered a very mixed reaction, some in favor others not. Here are some examples but please keep in mind that Blogrush has announced that click through rates are low at present because spam bloggers have been cheating the system and stealing traffic from legitimate users:
John Chow has relegated the BlogRush widget to the bottom of his sidebar, He reported in My BlogRush Stats that BlogRush has shown his headlines 27,293 times and produced a very low click rate of 91 You would expect his network to be thriving and at 445 blogger referrals and 247,892 credits earned from his refferal network and his own traffic it is. He says "The key to doing well with BlogRush will be to use really enticing headlines and build up a lot of syndication credits. Just running the Widget should get you some referrals, but you will get much better results by blogging about it." Interesting I will be watching to see if this post makes a difference to my own referrals.Darren Rowse of Problogger in What are your BlogRush Statistics Like? gives a similar picture of his BlogRush statistics - only 39 clicks despite his headlines having been shown 70,000 times.He has asked for comments from others using BlogRush regarding their own experiences. This makes interesting reading in itself. Darren is going to try some of the tips in his own post Tips for Using BlogRush to Generate Traffic for Your Blog to see their effect on his figures. This may will be interesting to follow.
Andy Beard has an interesting article Blogrush Testing and Tracking (Updated - John Reese Quote) which counters some of the negative criticism BlogRush has had.Talking of which here are a few posts that do criticize Blog Rush Blog Rush: 3 Fatal Reasons to Nuke it Right Now, Blog Rush = Blog Trickle? and Jim Kukral's
Don’t Waste Your Time With Blogrush, It Won’t Work For Your Blog I disagree with his comment " Bloggers don’t want, or crave “more traffic”" in reference to the 99% of blogs with low traffic who just do it because the want to blog. Does he think we like talking to ourselves? If we did not want traffic we may as well be using pen and paper.
I then got a little bored of my research mainly because most of the talk is based on supposition. BlogRush has not been around long enough to speak for itself. I think I will hang around a little longer and see what it has to say.
If however they introduce the rule, as mentioned on a blog post at income.com of having to place your BlogRush widget "in the fold" of your blog (the top area of your blog that is visible without having to scroll down) then I will be out of there - Unless I am getting zillions of new readers that is - oh dear I seem to be going against my principles with that statement. Am I being turned by all the stuff I read on zations (optimization, monetization etc). Maybe I should revert to pen and paper and talking to myself.
I cannot refer you to the post I mentioned above regarding BlogRush considering making it a requirement that the widget be placed above the fold. As you can read here - Feedback - the post in question was accidentally deleted. I suspect most people commenting on the post, including myself, indicated their objection: that way it was leaning when I read the comments.