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EntreCard Advertising Cost should be related to number of drops

21 Feb 2008 | The Blogsphere |  17 comments
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Overview
This is a reply to Stone Head’s post in the official EntreCard Forums, there is also a poll at the end of this post for those who are feeling poll-ish. The debate is that whether or not the Advertising Cost on an EntreCarder’s site should be related to the number of EntreCard that is dropped into that EntreCarder’s EntreCard Inbox. I believe it should be related while Stone Head begs to differ. What do you think?

Why EntreCard Advertising Cost should be related to number of drops
1. The “Drop yours” button on the EntreCard Widget must be clicked, right?
2. While clicking the “Drop yours” button, what does the clicker sees?
3. The Advertiser’s Entrecard, ya?

So is it safe to assume that the more number of drops a site received, the more exposure that EntreCard widget has. (unless images are prevented from loading)

Having said that, please tell me why EntreCard Advertising Cost should not be related to number of drops?

Stone Head’s original topic in the official EntreCard Forums
This is the thread which got me started on this post:
http://entrecard.com/forums/1/2972/#p=9

The first post
Now I shall proceed to dissect Stone Head‘s post, so here begins the first slice:

1. Remove the link between drops and site value. Earning credits should be an end in itself. There is no reason to tie site value to it. Much of the problem in Entrecard is people trying to increase the value of their site to they can get on the most popular page. There is a view that the higher the value of your site, the more successful your site is.

I disagree. The fact is, there is a very valid reason to “tie site value to it”.

Just what exactly is the problem with folks trying to get on the most popular page?

How successful a site is depends on how one defines “success” as different people have different definitions of success.

Site value should be de-linked from how many drops it gets. The simple solution is to just let everyone set their own price or set up a Project Wonderful type system. This would be superior to some secret algorithm which includes things like Alexa and Technorati ranks, both of which can also be gamed.

I believe that ain’t gonna happen. Phirate and Graham mentioned before that drops received would still play a major role in factoring a site’s Advertising Cost.

Instead of requesting to “de-link” site value with “how many drops it gets” why not suggest that the “Project Wonderful type system” to be an alternative for those who prefer their Advertising Cost to be determined by the bidders?

If the “Original System” and the “Project Wonderful type system” shares the same “Popular Page” then I can say that the “Project Wonderful type system” can be equally gamed.

How so? Get a rich friend with lots of EntreCredits to bid an insanely high amount and get sky rocketed into the top. Having said this, I guess you would like to propose that the “Popular Page” gets removed completely.

2. Reciprocal dropping is gaming the system. Sorry, it is. How many people would bother to visit your website if you weren’t dropping on theirs? My guess is it would be much less and if that is the case, then the traffic is just illusionary. If you didn’t know who was dropping on you, the incentive would be to visit sites you are interested in.

In a way, it is “gaming the system” but then again, based on EntreCard current system, it seems like the system is working as intended.

For your information, I still click on the EntreCards shown on fellow EntreCarders’ EntreCard Widgets if I see a familiar looking EntreCard, or a new one that catches my attention.

Bad guess, and the traffic is not illusionary.

If I do not know who was dropping on me, I would visit PowerDropping.Com and drop 300 EntreCards daily on the top 300 fastest loading sites with EntreCard widgets installed above the fold in order to rake in 300 EntreCredits per day, so I can buy advertisements.

3. Get rid of categories. Let each site have 3 to 5 tags. Let people search by tag.

Bad idea to remove the categories completely. Adding tags is a good add on, but it should not replace categories completely.

4. If you want to increase quality of site visits, reduce the number of daily drops. There is nothing magical about 300. This would also reduce “entrecard fatigue”. People might still chain drop, but given time constraints, the odds of people lingering on their favorite sites is greater.

No comment here. The final decision lies with Phirate and Graham.

Beth’s Feedback
Now I will cut open Beth‘s post:

I agree 100%. I’m sick of this “so and so doesn’t drop on me so I won’t drop on them”, “let’s start a group and punish those who don’t spend 24/7 on the computer endlessly dropping cards and not reading the blogs unless they’re in the reciprocal clique..” I mean seriously people- this is Internet/Blogging Social Networking- not Internet/Blogging Credit Dropping Gladiators.

Imagine dropping Entrecards on a particular EntreCarder’s Inbox for many days in a row, but not receiving any reciprocative EntreCard drops back from her, and yes she is active with her blog, apparently for some reasons she chooses not to even visit my site at all.

I strongly believe that networking sincerely with other bloggers is a crucial part of blogging, it appears that she is not interested in networking with me, having said that, I do not need to waste any further time and energy with her.

Regarding the Reciprocative EntreCarders Guild (REG) that I am still in the midst of setting up, the following lines of text authored by you – Beth: “let’s start a group and punish those who don’t spend 24/7 on the computer endlessly dropping cards and not reading the blogs unless they’re in the reciprocal clique..” is totally not my intention, purpose, objective, etc of starting the said Reciprocative EntreCarders Guild (REG). Just a clarification in case you or others firmly believed that the REG is all of the above as mentioned by you.

I agree with you that social networking is a very important part of blogging and definitely not all about EntreCards and EntreCredits accumulation alone.

Ben Barden’s almost wise words
It is time to thrust my forum butter knife into Ben Barden’s reply:

If people only drop their card on a site and don’t do anything else, perhaps they didn’t like the site. Or maybe they didn’t have anything to say. Whether you use Entrecard or not, most visitors do not leave comments. Most people just read.

I believed that many bloggers failed to grasp this common sense.

Some of them seems to have the mindset that if one did not comment on an article, one surely did not read the article! Perhaps they need a refresher course about comments:
http://www.wayneliew.com/10-reasons-you-are-not-getting-comments/

Here, I quote the following paragraph for truth:

If I didn’t use Entrecard then yes, fewer people would find my site. I know that some people just drop their card on my site and don’t do anything else. However, some people also read my site. Some people subscribe. Some leave a comment. All as a result of me using Entrecard. How is that “illusionary” traffic?

Also, I would like to quote Mike aka Saphyrm’s wise words – “The mind is a terrible thing to close” and I believe that many folks have, unfortunately, closed off their minds.

That said, I’d be fine if categories were replaced with tags, and reducing the daily drop limit would be OK with me.

I am not fine with the categories being removed though I am okay with the reduction of the daily drop limit. Dropping less cards per day is a nice change.

Time to slash at Stone Head’s words again:

The problems is placing an extra value in the form of site costs attached to drops. It is like saying “if you earn $100,000 a year, we’ll also make your house worth an extra $50,000 when you sell it because you make so much money.”

I still fail to see where the problem is, and your example about houses is totally inappropriate. How about you check out this example instead:

1. Pinrut owns a shop [owns a website]
2. Many people frequents his shop [website has high traffic]
3. Folks willing to pay good moolah to advertise on his shop’s bill board since many people frequents Pinrut’s shop [high traffic = high exposure]

The act of placing an ad and attracting readers from outside Entrecard seems lost in the mania of increasing site value and playing up to other people in Entrecard.

How so? An EntreCarder’s site would still have non-EntreCarding Readers or Visitors, just how exactly would “the mania of increasing site value and playing up to other people in Entrecard” cause “The act of placing an ad and attracting readers from outside Entrecard” to seem to be lost? Please explain in detail why as I cannot quite possibly comprehend this.

However, the way Entrecard is working, you have to spend a great deal of time to get poor quality traffic.

Not entirely true. Totally depends on how one uses EntreCard to one’s advantage or disadvantage. There are folks who never drop cards, but get a lot of cards dropped on them.

If someone from within Entrecard visits a site, they will probably determine if it is worth returning in 1 or 2 visits. There is no need for a daily return. Problem is, that is exactly what the site is set up for right now.

Whether or not there is a need for a daily return is entirely up to the EntreCarders themselves. They made a choice. Are you trying to dictate how fellow EntreCarders use EntreCard? Does freedom of choice means anything to you?

The focus needs to get back to using the 125×125 ads to get traffic from outside the Entrecard community. That is the real prize, and right now the system isn’t designed to maximize that.

So you are actually saying that you have very concrete proof that the 125×125 ads are unable to get traffic from outside the EntreCard community?

IF they change the pricing mechanism to something more sane (ala PW), then there is no reason why sites couldn’t have more than 1 Entrecard ad display on their site. You should still only be able to drop on one site per day, but there is no reason why you couldn’t run multiple boxes to display ads. That would maximize the opportunity for bloggers to get ads to the public.

The current pricing model is quite sane, methinks. Personally, I do not see the need to display more than One (1) EntreCard on the site. If I wanted more than one, I would use Project Wonderful to accomplish that feat, and yeah I get paid in cold hard moolah too.

Even though PW costs real money, the time commitment to Entrecard has become so large to gather credits, that it is actually cheaper to spend money on PW than it is to spent time on EC.(assuming a minimum wage and $5 per 500ec)

One can always purchase EntreCredits using cold hard moolah.

I could give some details, but there are sites on PW which cost $0.03 per day to run the exact same 125×125 ad which costs 300ec to run on Entrecard. I’m sure everyone on both networks have found similar disparities.

Something is out of wack. That something is the pricing scheme on Entrecard (or the lack thereof).

EntreCredits and Cold Hard Moolah are different, even though EntreCredits could be bought using Cold Hard Moolah. I believe that most people tend to be willing to spend more on Advertising using EntreCredits than using Cold Hard Moolah, since EntreCredits is still able to be freely acquired as long as one puts in some time to do some site visiting and clicking.

Categories are unwieldy because not everything fits nicely into categories. A category is nothing more than a single, enforced tag. Tags offer more flexibility and greater precision for you to target where you would like an ad shown.

Still, that does not justify the removal of categories. Why not have both?

Deimos’ Daily Reads
Does Google Page Rank concerns you? Colin King shares his thoughts about Google, Comments, Bounce Rates and announced his decision to remove the dofollow plugin.

Become a good blogger by becoming a good reader first, so said Plonkee and I agree with her. One (1) of the Seven (7) Habits of Highly Effective People by Sean Covey is “Seek first to understand, then to be understood” and I believe this principle can be applied to bloggers alike too.

Aussie Blogger Ben Barden blogged about rewarding those who visits one’s domain regularly and I realized that I have been doing something similar recently, during the season of Chinese New Year I have been giving away EntreCredits to those who comments on my site.

A programming lecturer in South Africa – Arnold brought up an issue that all Stumble Upon users ought to be aware about – Should one be stumbling one own posts? After going through his article, I think I should stumble more of others articles and much less of my own.

Fellow Malaysian Blogger Adi Wong kinda ranted about how bad grammar does not exist in blogging after receiving a not so nice comment regarding his grammar.

Deimos’s Thoughts
It appears that there are still folks who would very much like to dictate how others uses a certain service. Well, to quote the words of a wise blogger – The dogs bark, and the caravan moves on. I believe Phirate and Graham will come up with a wise choice for the system.

Deimos Asks
Dear fellow EntreCarders, what do you think?
[poll=12]
Please do share your thoughts together with me here.


17 Comments

  1. 21st February 2008 
    12:26 pm         

    iCalvyn
    said the following:

    formy opinion, number of drop shoould be a part of the advertising credit.

    But i found that the more your credit was, the less people advertise at my entrecard

  2. 21st February 2008 
    12:41 pm         

    Alan
    said the following:

    Great post, Deimos. If I ever get a hold of that roundtoit I’ve been looking for I am planning a post on chaindrop that discusses the value of Entrecard and PW advertising. My experience has been that you Don’t in fact have to drop like crazy to build and keep an audience. While I had been a power dropper for awhile, some medical problems in my family forced me to be away from the computer and not drop much at all for awhile and I was thrilled to find that many of my regular Entrecard readers did continue to visit and drop on me while I was away. And I totally don’t get why anyone would think that getting on the Most Popular page is not a reasonable goal– being listed on Most Popular and/or in the top 3 for your niche on the Categories page brings in lots of “organic” clicks from EC. As I’ve said many times before, as a blogger it is up to you to create compelling content that lures droppers to read and comment on your blog. And I completely agree that it is all about networking and building relationships with other bloggers.

    My best to you,

    Alan

  3. 21st February 2008 
    1:19 pm         

    Aizat
    said the following:

    sincerely with other bloggers is a crucial part of blogging

    yes it true! sometime it is not about sincere but the bloggers just busy and can’t make a drop.. for me at least I could drop back is good enough.. i dun mind if i drop on someone blog and they don’t drop back.. ๐Ÿ’ก

  4. 21st February 2008 
    2:06 pm         

    StanHayes
    said the following:

    As I’ve said and Alan just said, it’s important to be on the Most Popular page because you get organic clicks from the Entrecard community. Good post overall.

  5. 21st February 2008 
    2:42 pm         

    Deimos Tel`Arin
    said the following:

    @iCalvyn:
    My Advertising Cost is ever increasing and my Ad Spot is always full. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

    =========================================================

    @Alan:
    Gah! Your family’s medical problem is resolved, right? ๐Ÿ˜ฏ
    I guess those people closed off certain parts of their mind. ๐Ÿ˜

    =========================================================

    @Aizat:
    Well, it does not use much time to return a drop. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ
    Unless one receives more than 200+ drops per day. ๐Ÿ˜•

    =========================================================

    @StanHayes:
    Thanks for the feedback and support yo! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    =========================================================

  6. 21st February 2008 
    3:47 pm         

    BaseGuradian
    said the following:

    I voted the second one ๐Ÿ˜›
    I think if you want to drop 300 cards a day go a head, it’s your computer, your internet line your time and your energy ๐Ÿ˜† I don’t see why this is such a big problem, everyday I log in my EC dashboard, I drop on the blogs that drop on me first and keep dropping until I want to stop. if i saw a good article, I read it. You (bloggers) don’t have to force me to read it, you can force me to read it by writing a good post though ๐Ÿ˜› for me Entrecard is just a tool to see other blog, not my boss telling me what to read ๐Ÿ™„ or post a comment.

  7. 21st February 2008 
    3:54 pm         

    Carol
    said the following:

    It seems to be the same no matter what site or service gets going, someone finds a way to game it, rig it, or cause its complete meltdown. And, when it seems that site users or members feel they are getting the shaft, they whine and say “no fair!” and want to change the rules in their favor. I think Entrecard is one of the best ideas to come down the pike, and we all win if we take the time to leave a comment, look at new blogs, and make new friends.

  8. 21st February 2008 
    5:05 pm         

    Deimos Tel`Arin
    said the following:

    @BaseGuardian:
    People are free to make their own choices. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Not very nice to attempt to dictate others choices, aye? ๐Ÿ˜Ž

    =========================================================

    @Carol:
    Exactly my thoughts! ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Methinks that some folks are whining too. ๐Ÿ˜›

    =========================================================

  9. 21st February 2008 
    6:54 pm         

    Entrepreneur
    said the following:

    I don’t completely agree with your post but my vote is definitely to continue to tie in the number of drops with the advertising costs.

    The category that I think should be removed is the MOST RECOMMENDED since so many people are just recommending everyone’s blog in the hopes that they get recommended back. Most people are smart enough, like John Chow, to just pay people to recommend them. The whole category is meaningless and more or less looks like the MOST POPULAR anyway.

  10. 21st February 2008 
    8:16 pm         

    Deimos Tel`Arin
    said the following:

    @Entrepreneur:
    I agree with you about the Most Recommended page. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ
    Most of the recommendations are not really sincere. โžก

  11. 22nd February 2008 
    3:24 am         

    Leon
    said the following:

    It’d be a crime not to comment on this post. You raise some very valid points. Entrecard should base your site value on something like votes or something else like that. I realize as Entrecard grows, it’s being gamed more and the traffic is of less quality.

  12. 22nd February 2008 
    5:58 am         

    Deimos Tel`Arin
    said the following:

    @Leon:
    Actually, it is kinda based on votes at the moment. ๐Ÿ˜€
    A site gets a “vote” whenever it gets a “drop”. ๐Ÿ˜›
    Systems based on votes are easily gamed. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  13. 22nd February 2008 
    8:20 am         

    Marcus Hochstadt
    said the following:

    Well, currently it’s good as it is. LOL

    OK; perhaps plugging a sort of Karma points or score into the algorithm.

    [quote Deimos]Unless one receives more than 200+ drops per day.[/quote]

    Hehe, so true mate… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14. 22nd February 2008 
    2:46 pm         

    Xacur
    said the following:

    “2. Reciprocal dropping is gaming the system. Sorry, it is. How many people would bother to visit your website if you werenโ€™t dropping on theirs? My guess is it would be much less and if that is the case, then the traffic is just illusionary. If you didnโ€™t know who was dropping on you, the incentive would be to visit sites you are interested in.”

    With that he totally change the meaning of a business card, I mean if you don’t know who is dropping you, then why you want a business card?

    The bidding system is cool, but have nothing to do with the entrecard system, and there is already a project wonderful.

    Worst category was less waiting time (or something like that) it didn’t worked at all, but it was removed.

    I think the entrecard system is good as it is, they have to improve their server or something instead because I remember when every change in Entrecard was instantaneous, now it don’t even work well. I dropped 390 cards one day, and it count me all of them, then some day when I had dropped 200 and somthing it started telling me 300 a day… and I couldn’t reach the 300!, etc.

    Lots of problems with the… software or I don’t know what should be fixed.

  15. 22nd February 2008 
    4:47 pm         

    lankapo
    said the following:

    ๐Ÿ™„ by reading your post here, i can see how u really love entecard and will be Graham Langdon’s body guard.

    did u read john cow’s blog, about entrecard.complain here and there ๐Ÿ™‚

    anyway, I love entrecard, because of entrecard, my blog alexa ranking from 1 million to 200k in 2 months

  16. 19th May 2008 
    1:04 am         

    tony
    said the following:

    Like your site. Very informative. Thanks !

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