ONLY GATORS Get Out Alive opened exactly four years ago on Oct. 1, 2009, and if you had told me then that I would be writing this now, I never would have believed you.
Penning this post just three days after the Kentucky game reminds me of the first big story the website covered – Tim Tebow’s concussion and the will-he-or-won’t-he nature of his return two weeks later against LSU.
Not only is OnlyGators.com still open four years later, it is more popular than ever. The biggest year in the history of the website has increased our lifetime visits to a staggering total of 8.6 million. What you are currently reading is the 4,441st post, and the first comment on this subject will be the 23,305th contributed by you, the readers.
The @OnlyGators Twitter account, which was registered six-and-a-half months before the website officially launched, has been around longer than 99.0 percent of all other Twitter users, according to the social network. It has gained approximately 5,000 followers in the last 12 months and boasts a current following of 23,278. There were also nearly 14,000 tweets sent out in the last year alone.
Don’t forget to Like OnlyGators.com on Facebook as well for updates, links to stories as they are posted and unique content. The website also has a Google+ page and brand new Instagram account that will be updated often.
What started as an idea out of thin air has become something beyond what I ever could have expected. It has been both personally and professionally rewarding, and it would not have been possible without all of your patronage and continued support.
Additionally, if you own a company or wish to promote a product or service, there are plenty of sponsorship and advertising placement opportunities available throughout the website, so be sure to e-mail me directly and alert me of your interest.
In the coming weeks, there may be additional ways in which you can contribute and help keep OnlyGators.com up and running for free. Unlike most independent websites and newspapers, there are no plans to adopt a pay model for our content. However, being a free website for you does not mean that bills are not being paid by us.
I hope you seriously consider assisting us in meeting our financial commitments once the information is made available in the near future.
No matter the longevity or frequency of your patronage, please know that I very much appreciate you clicking on your OnlyGators.com bookmark, tapping the iPhone home screen icon you saved, reading the tweets and visiting the links, or even just checking out the site through my work with Yahoo! Sports’ Rivals affiliate InsidetheGators.com.
Without you, the readers, this website would not exist. Period.
Here’s to another year!