I was a long time EntreCard user when it began late 2007. It had given my blog a kick start and introduced me to many good people. I stuck with it through the changes, and many ups and downs. I had argued with others, who dropped it earlier, about its value and possibilities. But, lately, I’m seeing what they were seeing: a distraction, lack of reader participation, and poor blog quality choices.
The idea of an EntreCard (EC) economy is definitely a clever one, but it’s a distraction. I’ve been thinking too much on how to maximize my EC credits and increasing my ad value. I’m not willing to go on a chain-dropping spree. Usually, I drop on those who dropped on me, but it seemed like a chore now. I felt like I needed to “drop a card and get my credit”, and then quickly move on. I didn’t like that feeling.
I’ve used EC to find useful blogs. I kept track of the expensive blogs in EC, and lately, I did not find them to be the same quality as the ones I’ve seen outside of EC. Even with the changes in the ad system (which I was excited about), I’m still seeing questionable quality of the top ads. I’m not sure why. Maybe they knew how to “maximize” the system? Maybe they’re still chain dropping? Maybe they are participating more in forums, or place more ads? I’ve done all that work, and my return hasn’t been that significant.
I also have Twitter to blame for my recent departure from EC. Twitter is the place to find A-list bloggers, marketers, designers, and celebrities. I have to tap into this resource. Most of my new blog reading recommendations are from Twitter. Most of my fellow EC users are on Twitter. The medium with high readership and participation is unbeatable. Twitter is certainly that, and more.
I’m still searching for new ways to bring in new readers who are willing to join my little community. I need to concentrate on creating good content, finding more relevant readers, and making connections with other bloggers. I can’t be distracted. The golden rule to avoid placing ads in my blog is becoming more relevant. No more gimmicks. Less sidebar; more body, by far.