TrafficJam finally launches, but will you use it?

Filed as News on February 21, 2008 5:41 am

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Very few products and services are safe from the blogosphere, particularly when they’re targeted directly at bloggers, promise much, fail to deliver, have problems, and are then shot to pieces by ‘the mob”.

So it was with Blogrush, John Reese’s brainchild. It promised to do much, but many bloggers felt hard done by, being thrown out without much explanation due to “quality control”, having to put up with ugly widgets, and with other bloggers who tried to game the system by not including the widget on their own site.

Oh, and TrafficJam, the “Phase 2″ part which would help to drive even more traffic to member sites by marrying the “digg / techmeme” effect with the widget.

It never came. It was due last year, and stalled. John’s blog stayed pretty much silent (apart from telling us what a wonderful holiday he had over Christmas).

Now it’s finally launched, but at what cost?

Unsurprisingly, Mr Reese has launched it with both a fanfare and a call for help. His announcement email (which you’d only get if you hadn’t already junked Blogrush last year) begins:

We’re excited to announce that we finally released TrafficJam.com in public beta — it’s using LIVE DATA from the BlogRush Network. In fact, some of your blog posts may be ranked on TrafficJam.com right now!

We’d appreciate your helping in getting the word out about TrafficJam.com’s release. The more exposure the site gets the more it benefits YOU and other users of BlogRush — because it will drive traffic to members’ blogs along with the widget itself.

I wonder how many current Blogrush members will do that? To be fair, I don’t know how far the backlash against BR went — it certainly hit the tech sector very hard, but then that’s the sector that often spends a lot more time looking at the technicalities of blogging. I’m not convinced there’ll be many ex-members queueing up to get back in, either — even if they get past “quality control”.

The email continues:

The site will update every 24 hours initially and then move towards hourly updates; we want to find the right balance of frequency so visitors don’t miss too many new posts if they keep coming back to the site.

This is just one addition of many we have planned to help drive more traffic to your blog!

Then come some reasons why TrafficJam is important:

  • “Ultimate research tool” for marketers
  • Never run out of ideas for blog posts
  • Identify untapped keywords and other opportunities
  • “This site is essentially a LIVE HEADLINE TESTING MACHINE”
  • Find relevant posts in your niche
  • “TrafficJam.com can save you TONS of your time and constantly ’show you’ what your target market is most interested in at any given time.”

Addressing the issue of poor traffic levels which drove many bloggers away:

Some people were disappointed by the traffic results they received when testing BlogRush, and it’s completely understandable…

And as promised, we’re working hard to improve things.

TrafficJam.com is just one of many services we have planned to help our users drive more free traffic to their blogs. And we’re not done yet.

So what do you think? Are you a current or ex-BlogRiush user? Would you be tempted back into the network? Or is TrafficJam too little, too late?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

TrafficJam.com

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  1. By Mark from QuoteMyAuto posted on February 21, 2008 at 7:13 am
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    I had no idea about all of the drama with Blogrush – I just recently added it to Bloglyne.com and have not had any issues with it, but perhaps they ironed them out since last year.

    I took a look at TrafficJam last night, not sure if or how it adds value – seems like just a list of random blogs… when I have time (after dealing with the thousands of other things I have to do on the other sites, I guess I will take a closer look)

    Reply

  2. By Andy Merrett posted on February 21, 2008 at 7:34 am
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    Hi Mark,

    I’m not sure how widespread the BlogRush backlash was. I think it stayed largely in the tech / web marketing niches. Without wanting to offend or condescend anyone, stereotypically at least it seems that techies and those doing web marketing are much quicker to judge, and really looking for sites and services that perform straight away, whereas perhaps other niches (autos, for example) aren’t so bothered.

    Could be wrong on that, just my feeling.

    Search blogs for BlogRush and (while you’ll get a lot about TrafficJam now) you’ll see titles like “Time to Stop the BlogRush!”, “Blogrush gets the boot”, and “BlogRush Sucks!”

    It will be interesting to see if perception changes with TrafficJam.

    Reply

  3. By Gobala @ WordPress Tutorials posted on February 21, 2008 at 3:06 pm
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    Personally, I think they are trying to make a point when there is no pint to be made. I got 2.7 million BlogRush credits, I wish I could sell it off..

    Reply

  4. By Kemi posted on February 22, 2008 at 4:48 pm
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    Oy, these widgets and buttons and code snippets and websites playing the “rank my blog” game. It’s a bit much, no?

    Reply

  5. By Colleen M. Johnson, CMJ Office posted on February 23, 2008 at 3:19 pm
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    I never knew about the drama with BlogRush either. I have it. I have not checked TrafficJam out. It is a bit crazy with all these companies. I agree with Kemi. Everyone’s trying to pull rank.

    Reply

  6. By Andy Merrett posted on February 25, 2008 at 8:49 am
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    Too many widgets, indeed.

    Reply

  7. By Angela Booth posted on February 26, 2008 at 9:44 pm
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    I stuck BlogRush onto one of my sites last year and let it run for around a month.

    From what I recall, it provided a lot of horribly inappropriate links, so since it added nothing to the user experience, I took it off.

    And no, I won’t be adding it again. :-)

    Reply

  8. By Simon posted on February 29, 2008 at 7:15 am
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    @ Andy – I don’t think it has anything to do with certain sectors judging too quickly on this occasion (although I agree it is sometimes a factor).

    When a service hypes itself up so much (as BR undoubtedly did), then it’s setting itself up for a fall if it doesn’t deliver what it promises. Quite frankly, Reese got what he deserved after the way BR conducted affairs early on.

    As I just commented on Andy Beard’s blog, I’ll reiterate here my thoughts on the new addition. TrafficJam is a nice idea, but I don’t think basing it off a system like BlogRush is that desirable.

    Only my opinion of course…

    Reply

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