10/31/2008

The Demise of BlogRush


It was with great disappointment and shock at the email I received from BlogRush honcho, John Reese, Wednesday night. It announced the immediate shut down of this service. That very night without any advanced warning. I’m sure most readers are aware of this widget I had on the upper left column of this blog; BlogRush. It never provided the “exponential traffic” promised from the outset of this endeavor by Mr. Reese. It was financed by Mr. Reese and some of his colleagues at no cost to the consumer, such as myself.

What I find surprising is the swiftness of the shut down by Mr. Reese. I have been blogging for just seven months. During that time, I was able to meet many people, read many unique blogs because of that BlogRush widget. Now, those of those of us who neglected to bookmark these blogs will lose all contact. No time to say goodbye. While it never lived up to the hype, it was more of a community of blogs where people were able to see and visit different blogs by just refreshing your browser. It’s like losing someone who was with you from the start of a project at work. All of sudden, without any inkling something was wrong, you lose that person. I can’t say for sure just how much traffic I received as a result of BlogRush. I think my traffic is derived by the countless hours of SEO I spent on this blog. One of the benefits I will miss by the downfall of BlogRush is not being able to leave my blog link at a particular blog in the comments section. That really does help insofar as backlinks.

I can understand John Reese decision to shut down because it did not live up to expectations. I can understand it strictly from a business point of view in that he was losing money over this. What I don’t understand, from last nights’ letter, was his refusal to sell it to another to see if they can do a better job. I discovered a long time ago (and something Mr. Reese will eventually) there is always going to be someone out there who is smarter than you are. They can do a better job than you capable of doing. I tend to believe Mr. Reese let pride get in his way here. But, his saying “it’s not always about the money” was asinine. He starts a business and it’s not about the money??? Pray tell, just what was it about Mr. Reese? I thought the idea of starting up any worthwhile business model was to eventually make a profit. It was patently ridiculous from the start to not, at least, accept advertising. This could have bought them needed time to work out the kinks they needed to obviously do. There were people taking advantage of the system. But, there are “smarter people” Mr. Reese could have found to stop the rampant cheating.

I will miss BlogRush. Not because of the “exponential traffic” that I never received. But, the sense of community we all had here with that little widget on the sidebar. I hope Mr. Reese has learned some valuable lessons. He claims to have been involved in online marketing since 1990. He apparently hasn’t learned much in the past 18 years about the most important element of a business; the customer. While it may be true “it’s not always about the money,” it is always about the customers. And, Mr. Reese, you let down a lot of people with your brazen, ill-conceived, thoughtless decision to shut down BlogRush Wednesday night without any real warning. That was very callous of you. I’m sure many people will be very reluctant to involve themselves in your next endeavor, whatever that might be. You can count me in that number also.

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