Funny how things happen when you least expect them to.
After two years of toiling away at this blog [and at times, neglecting it] - just when I had started to have the discussion with myself about letting my domain expire - I developed an audience. Oh don't get me wrong ... an infinitesimal amount of visitors compared to anyone of importance. But a following nonetheless.
In the last five weeks my daily average number of page views have increased somewhere around 250%.
250% - A fairly dramatic increase. Enough to make me pause and consider why. I've narrowed down my particular success to five factors. They might be different than your experience [please don't let any so-called blogging expert tell you how to do it - it's far more organic than that].
- It's a universal truth - people love celebrities. And "celebrity" is loosely defined depending on what circles you run in. Two of my most successful posts to-date are my interview with Alex Bogusky about why he quit Twitter and my comparison of Q-Tip vs. Quest Love on Twitter. [side note: I was pretty psyched that Questo actually read the post and even commented].
- Jump on a hot topic right away. Last week as the P&G/Tide Loads of Hope social media experiment unfolded, I banged out a quick post - a simple overview of what took place and a few links to relevant information. I think my speed-to-post helped drive a significant amount of traffic early the following morning, garnered a number of re-tweets and also got me a link on Dave Knox's blog. The post wasn't perfect by any means, but it was timely.
- Don't be afraid to ask for what you want. Overwhelmingly, the response I got to the Bogusky interview was along the lines of I admire your gumption. I wish I had done that. I guess this is how I've always been ... if you don't ask, you don't get.
- Optimizing for search makes a huge difference. According to Google Analytics, 25% of all my site traffic comes from search engines [with Google dominating]. It's amazing to me that I am the first consumer-generated result on Google for both "P&G social media experiment" and "Alex Bogusky twitter." I'm no SEO ninja, but giving even a little consideration to SEO will drive traffic that you would otherwise miss.
- Twitter and FaceBook are incredible distribution vehicles and traffic drivers. Again, according to Google Analytics, over the last month Twitter + Facebook account for nearly 25% of all my traffic. In my humble opinion, content producers who are not distributing their content via Twitter, FaceBook, MySpace, etc. are missing out on a big audience.
Here's my question for you: What was the moment | post that put you over the edge? What's made your blog a success [however you choose to define it]? Please share either via Twitter (@IanSohn) or comments - not only am I genuinely interested in learning, but maybe my new found audience is as well