Rebranding: Conservative Grapevine Is Now Linkiest & Right Wing Video Is Now Viral Footage

Before I get started, let me say that the content on what was Conservative Grapevine (Now Linkiest) and the content on what was Right Wing Video (Now Viral Footage) is NOT going to change. Let me repeat that: The content on both websites is NOT going to change. I wanted to say that up front just to make sure there are no misunderstandings.

First off, let me tell you a little bit about why Right Wing Video and Conservative Grapevine were given those names originally.

RWV was originally intended to be a mixture of conservative and regular videos, but I did expect it to have a higher concentration of political vids. However, there turned out to be less political content out there than I thought and those videos were also less popular. Typically, there are no political videos in the top 10 most popular videos of the month for the website.

I had also planned to make Conservative Grapevine into a mixture of political and non-political content right from the beginning, although I had thought that it would be heavier on blog content than it turned out to be over the long haul. Additionally, although I found political content did fairly well on the blog, non-political content was even more popular.

So, with both websites, the non-political content turned out to be drawing more eyeballs than I thought it would in the beginning. Additionally, over time, I found that outside of permanent links from conservative blogs and the linkage at Right Wing News, most of the big links to both websites were coming from links at non-political websites: forums, gossip blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc. This was problematic, given the names of the websites. For example, several times I noticed people linking to CG or RWV in forums and saying something akin to, “This link is great! Just ignore the name and check it out anyway!”

This gets back to why I originally selected the names I did for each website. Personally, I believe that if your target audience is going to be made up almost entirely of conservatives, then having an expressly conservative name makes perfect sense — also, I have found that it seems to help in attracting advertisers. On the other hand, a name that is openly conservative or for that matter, liberal, is going to be a negative to most people who are not of that ideology. They’re less likely to read it in the first place, less likely to come back, and less likely to bookmark it.

That being said, a neutrally named website can still draw a non-ideological crowd even if it’s very partisan. To name just one of many examples, Reddit is an extremely liberal, virulently anti-Christian website that mixes that in with great links. If Reddit explicitly advertised the website as an atheistic, liberal link website, they’d be lucky to be at 1/20th of the size they’re at today.

That thinking played into the decision to change the names of Conservative Grapevine and Right Wing Video. If the large new sources of traffic for both websites are going to be from non-political websites, then the names should be non-political so as not to frighten those new visitors off. And, as an added bonus, if they hang around Linkiest and Viral Footage long enough, eventually, they’re probably going to take a look at the conservative content on those websites, too. In other words, if I draw the moderates in with the bikini pics or videos of the Air Force blowing up terrorists, next thing you know, they may be reading the Ann Coulter columns and watching How The World Works, too.

So, that’s why the names of both websites have changed despite the fact that, once again, the content is going to stay the same.

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