The Retrospective Is Fascinating As We Continue Moving Forward
It was 2009, and we were just beginning to develop our own bootstrap technologies at Rodan Media. We started with a social network, then we worked some magic to create a blog system. It was a great experience, and our code has been used to drive dozens of websites.
Today, of course, we can build amazing and dynamic websites from scratch, and we often do just that. We also find that for many of our clients, it is more cost effective for our them to utilize existing CMS platforms, adding custom features as necessary to achieve specific results. This is particularly true when the client wants to maintain some of their own content. We have become deft at deploying WordPress installations, replete with beautiful and responsive themes, as well as ecommerce sites using Open Cart or Magento, depending upon the client’s needs.
We are also concentrating additional effort, once again, to building unique, high-quality content that engages the user and provides a rewarding experience, both for site visitors and for the website and business owners we serve. This includes a deeper focus on our own corporate media sites, which have always been our long-term desire.
Our flagship site, which is being reconstructed through 2014, is TurnpikeInfo.com, a marvelous travel site that will incorporate a number of high-value verticals the serve our visitors, vendors, advertisors and investors. It is the verticals that will offer tremendous monetization potential, even though we recognize the direct advertising and sales potential of the TurnpikeInfo.com site, itself.
When we first registered the domain, going online in early 2009, our plan was to provide toll information and traffic reports to visitors. As we discovered how the audience used the site, we altered the plan and included maps, gps, exit data, service plaza information, and the like. Our traffic mushroomed to about 2,200 visits per month by the end of 2009. At the close of 2010, we were serving about 4,000 visitors per month. Today we serve about 55,000 visitors per month! Let me write that: fifty-five thousand! It has been an incredible journey, both for the drivers and for us! The website pays for itself, but it is the verticals and new partnerships that augur the greatest potential as we move forward with new features for our users.
What does all this have to do with moving a few old pages of blog entries? Everything. The old blog entries no longer have a place on the Rodan Media corporate site, where they have been hosted for the past five years. Instead, they belong here, where we share our thoughts and watch our perspectives evolve and adapt to changing technologies and trends. Looking back at what we have written, since 2009, it is remarkable to see just how much really has changed, including us and our perspective and outlook.
The things that have stayed the same are equally curious. For instance, the SEO blog entries have scarcely changed in all these years. It is the one thing that has such constance that it is remarkable so many companies are devoted to “keeping up with SEO trends.” There are no trends. Just make good content, and you will be fine. Yes, you have to tweak metas and titles, from time to time, but the meat and potatoes of a website will always be the driver of traffic, in addition to the relevance of a sound domain name or branded name.
Speaking of names, you are probably wondering how we registered a domain name like Box30136.com. That happens to be our corporate post office box on Las Olas Bouelvard in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We could use the Las Olas address, of course, as it has its element of prestige; but, imagine using a domain like 1404EastLasOlas.com!
This is the third incarnation of Rodan Media. The first two efforts were failures. But we learned so much from those early losses, the travails and tears that accompanied them, to finally make the third time a real charm.
The fact is, we are proud to look back and see how far we have come since reincorporating in June 2009. We also know there is a never-ending journey ahead, and we are proud to continue to share it with you.
~ Danny Pryor, CEO