Would I call it a ‘Come Back?”

Right when I started going through some life changes, I abandoned many of my hobbies and interests. I picked up new ones, but I knew the things I used to do were still holding a special place in my heart. For me that was mountain biking and writing. I used to manage two sites, BikeCommuters.com and MtnBikeRiders.com. But while I was dealing with all the drama in my life, I decided to step down and relinquish my responsibilities to some dear friends. Now that I’m going into my 3rd year of my new life, I started showing more interest in these hobbies. In fact, I even bought a new mountain bike and I’ve started blogging again.
mtnbikeriders.com fat tire bike
This bike isn’t anything fancy, it’s a basic single speed fat tire mountain bike. I got a crazy deal on it through eBay. I’m actually looking forward to riding again, it should be fun. This fat bike would make things more interesting on the trail once I start riding again.

The blogging thing was actually huge. I used to pride myself on my ability to write about anything. But I stopped for quite some time just to deal with things. As of late, I’ve been publishing more and more work. One of my other blogs I run just got a new article posted and it’s about Chinese Scooters.

I think as I work through my stuff, I’m finally starting to get a sense of where I want to go and what I want to do. Writing and riding was always a big part of my life that I found very rewarding. So it only makes sense for me to come back to it. Just recently a friend was visiting whom I haven’t seen in years asked me how I’m doing and what I’m up to now. I told him that for the most part I’m doing well. He asked me about my hobbies, I told him I’ve been fishing more than I ever have but mentioned my new bike. I guess it was at that point where I started seeing that I’m on my way out of the muck and mire I’ve had to deal with in the past few years. Now that things are starting to settle down, I’m picking up where I left off. I’m hoping that the next thing I start focusing on would be my health. I do miss racing…but that’s for another day to talk about.

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The Importance of Product Reviews

Have you ever gone shopping for an item and once you got it home, it just wasn’t as great as you thought it would be? What about that restaurant you ate at, the food kinda sucked? If you’ve ever had a similar situation like that happen to you, then you may want to consider reading product reviews before you spend more money on anything.

I’ve been in the Product Reviews business for the last several years. I own and operate 2 bicycle websites, one is MtnBikeRiders.com and the other is BikeCommuters.com. What do my sites do? We provide product reviews, news, articles, How To’s and provide our readers any relevant information they might find useful.

When I first started my websites, there were other sites that offered product reviews for free, but they did offer a package where you pay them a certain amount of money, then you’re guaranteed a great review. Those sites are no longer around and for good reason. My sites offer FREE PRODUCT REVIEWS, why? For one, my self and the rest of my staff are consumers just like you. We shop for the same things you do and why not share the info we discover about product that we test to others.

The way it works for my sites and I’m sure for other sites is a company contacts myself asking if we’d test out their products. We don’t say yes to everything, but as long as the item is relevant to my readers, we’ll consider it. Once we get the product, we typically will do a First Impression of the item. Basically we’re telling you what we thought of it during our first few uses of it. Then we’ll publish a formal review a few weeks later with photos, videos(if applicable) and links back to your site.

The Formal Review consists of a more in-depth look at the company’s product and we test it against the claims they make as well as look at the overall quality, workmanship and ease of use. There are more factors we throw in, but it all depends on the item we’re testing.

So why is it important for companies to have independent websites test out their products? Mainly it’s for exposure! It’s basically free publicity on your company and products. Here’s the thing, if your gadget, apparel, device or doodad claims it’s going to do A,B,C and D, then make sure it does all those as you describe it. But if it fails to do any of those and the review finds flaws, then you’ll be hit with a bad product review.

I’ll give you an example, a few years back I met a guy who had a magnetic bicycle pedal company that wanted MtnBikeRiders.com to review his product. He said the magnets on the pedals would keep a rider’s feet on the pedals. But during my review, that never happened. The magnets were weak and it just didn’t work they way he said it would. This was the last line I put in the review: “Truth be told, I was really disappointed in how these pedals performed. ”

Let’s say you’ve got a stellar product review from an independent site, heck share all that on Social Media! Push it out on Facebook, Twitter, Blog about it and even include in your next newsletter.

Now that you have that in mind, start reaching out to independent websites and have them test out your products, c’mon, it doesn’t really cost you anything and it has a reach greater than you may think.

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