The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Monday, January 18, 2010

Blog Boggled: This Is Only A Test

       Testing.... 1, 2.3.....testing.  Can you hear me in the back?   Before a speaker or someone who is relying on a microphone begins whatever it is they are going to deliver to an audience, they usually will do a sound check to make sure that they will be heard when they deliver their presentation.  Blogging does not allow any sound check and we never really know who is going to show up to our blog presentations.  And without comments or tracking it's hard to tell if anybody did show up.

        I'm not especially scientifically minded, but I am intrigued by things like consumer surveys and the effectiveness of advertising.  I also like to see the lists like best selling books, top grossing movies, music charts, or anything that gives the results of how well received something was by its intended audience. That's probably why I am so fascinated by how effectively a blog is delivered to an intended audience, how it is received by the readers, how well it is followed and commented upon, and how it sustains life or eventually dies.  Blog Development and Marketing is what I suppose one would call it if it were a college course.

         Some of my posts have been strictly experimental, but hopefully not in anyway detrimental to the content of the material--I always try to post something substantive.  For example, after seeing many posts on other blogs about contests or free give aways, I thought I'd start with a similar come on to entice readers to look at my post last Thursday.  It was a tease--I wasn't really giving anything away--I just wanted to see if I could draw any more readers to the site with this approach.  Google Analytics, my hit tracker that I have installed on my site, said no, the hits went down from the previous day.  There were some excellent comments, but not more than average.  What does it all mean?  You tell me.  Maybe nothing much, but it was my experiment for the day and I thought the post was still reasonably informative.

          So I'll probably keep playing with this, but hopefully not at the cost of quality of content.  It's like when I was a kid:  If I got a toy that really fascinated me and I wondered how it worked, I would frequently take it apart, usually with a hammer, and see what was inside.  Hopefully I won't be as destructive with this blog, but I'm curious.  I am trying to learn something.  If any of you are doing the same thing, I'd like to swap some ideas, so I hope you will leave your comments if you have something to share.

          Tamara Heiner posted some good information on her blog, Chasing Dreams, the other day.  You may want to check it out and when you're there, leave a comment and let her know that I linked you there.
And while you're here at Tossing It Out please leave me a comment.  Anything will do.  I killed "capcha" like Tamara recommended--let me know if it worked okay.  Have you learned anything useful from Google Analytics or whatever tracking device or hit counter that you use?   This post has been shorter than most of mine:  Is that better?  Should it be even shorter?

31 comments:

  1. I had some kind of tracking thing for a bit, but then got rid of it.
    Interesting about your experiment! I think titles can draw more people too.

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  2. Oh, I meant to say thank you for stopping by my blog and giving me advice. I appreciate it. :-)

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  3. Since I killed capcha I've had more comments, don't know if that made a difference but I do know that I much prefer making comments on blogs without it.

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  4. It's always fascinating what gets bloggy attention and what doesn't!

    Thanks for following my blog!

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  5. very useful read. I would love to follow you on twitter. By the way, did you learn that some chinese hacker had hacked twitter yesterday again.

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  6. I haven't figured it out what people like and what they don't. I think I need to listen to my daughter and just forget the numbers and enjoy. I'm trying.

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  7. I think it's interesting to see how certain features affect traffic to your blog. I know that I ignore most contests because I don't think I'd win.

    ann

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  8. I don't have any sort of tracking on my blog because it would become just something else for me to become obsessed with.

    Tossing it Out is a fun place to visit. So keep up the good work.

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  9. I don't have any type of tracking device on my blog anymore. I kept forgetting to check it, so I decided it wasn't worth the bother.

    I agree that catchy blog titles encourage readers. Shorter blog posts are always easier to read, and people seem to comment more on those. I've also found that people like to see pictures. I usually try to have at least one pic in a blog post.

    Whenever I have a giveaway, I spread the news. When I comment on other peoples' blogs, I share in the comments that I'm having a giveaway. Other people read it and respond. Good prizes encourage people to leave comments. They don't have to be big, expensive gifts...$10 gift card to Starbucks or Target seems to be a big hit.

    Thanks for your thoughts...blog readership is an interesting study.

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  10. Jessica-- Advice from others is what community is all about. I always appreciate advice the others give me. I do try to find catchy or intriguing titles.

    KarenG --- anything to make commenting easier. So was my spam filter working today?

    L. Diane -- and thank you!

    Anonymous -- I am puzzled by your comment, especially since you left the same comment on two of my posts today. ????

    Teresa -- If you're not into figuring out the "blog science", then yes you should take your daughter's advice.

    Anne Elle -- I'm the same way. I rarely enter contests. I once won a package of cheese from a supermarket.

    Carol -- thanks! I like to be fun, but I hope that I sometimes provoke some thought as well.

    Beth -- I have such a difficult time keeping my posts short, after all I'm a writer and have a lot to say. Even my comments on other blogs often tend to be long. Write?
    Right!

    General question: So far this morning I'm getting more comments more quickly than usual. Is it because it's Monday? A shorter post than usual? I eliminated the "capcha" word ID? The topic is so darn captivating that everyone wants to respond? -- More blog science questions you know.
    Lee

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  11. rLEE-b ~
    What is "Capcha"? And why did you eliminate it?

    ~ "Lonesome Dogg" McMe

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  12. Stephen -- I don't know where the term "Capcha" comes from but for the extended story you can go to the link provided for Tamara. But short version-- I disabled that word identification thing you get before you post your comment. Was mine gone when you posted today?
    Are you getting any feedback from analytics yet?

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  13. Lee,

    Having "experimented" in the same way as you mentioned, I will share my experience with you.

    As I am sure you noticed, I have a "free" pattern on my website on mondays (continuing series) and have had sporadic Trivia contest where the first correct answer wins a beading pattern.

    I have a spike on Monday and Tuesdays from those who take advantage of the free patterns.

    The sporadic Trivia game was a shot at getting people to visit more, since they never know when I post the trivia contest.

    I have also had Free patterns on my website(different from blog) as an "experiment" to try to get visitors who might then be tempted with something I sell.

    It always seems to bring me back to my feeling of why bother? I have even had an outright comment or 2 (via direct email not on my blog) stating they come for the "Free" but dont have time to READ.

    As I found with my website years ago, the free stuff might bring 1000 visitors who download the free stuff, but if only 2 buy something...was my effort effective?

    Additionally....the downloads of my free patterns are many. Beading as small of a community as it is, and as personal as it is....it dismays me how FEW send me an email or comment, or as much as give the post a star rating of a thank you. Its not like I am a "COMPANY".... I really do appreciate the few thank you's I get.

    Afterall, isnt that what people should say when you give them a "gift"?

    So in the end, I am not sure it is worth it. I am thinking of stopping my free Monday patterns after the current one is completed. I might do a trivia once in a blue moon....

    And even if it all worked to bring more readers....I wonder if it would be "worth it" anyhow. Not like I am being paid anything.

    Which brings it all back to the big question of why do we work so hard at blogging? I should perhaps refocus on my beading and designing. The rewards there are at least tangible!!

    But blogging is still fun....

    Oh what to do!!

    Sig

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  14. Sig,
    Thanks for the extensive and very fine comment. Yeah, I don't get it either in regard to the people that just like to swoop in, grab, and go.
    I'm not even a beader, but I like to check out your posts because they're well written and entertaining and not always about beading.
    I guess it's fine devoting the time, but wouldn't it be cool to get paid for all the effort we put into our blogs. I guess the payment is satisfaction and getting some really good comments sometimes.

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  15. I killed capcha thanks to my friend Tamara, but then got spammed so I put it back up.

    I never know what people will respond too. What I think are my best/most interesting posts often get the least amount of comments and what I think are my weak off the cuff posts get the most-so I am at a loss as to what always catches people.

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  16. so funny! I hear ya. Sometimes I feel like saying, "gee, am I talking to myself over here?"

    death to capcha!!! and thanks for linking to me!

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  17. Tamara -- your post had good information and was worth linking to. The "capcha" feature is disengaged for a trial period and if it works, forever.
    The post from "anonymous" is suspicious. Would this have gotten by the spam capture feature. Has anyone else gotten this message about twitter? So far I've gotten it 3 times today and it seems rather weird.

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  18. Hey, thanks so much for posting this original and unique article. I can't tell you how many times I've visited blogs
    from Google and they've got nothing on them but crappy ads and false information that's unereliable. I don't
    normally comment on blogs, but I just thought that i'd drop you a line and tell you that I think you're doing a fantastic job.
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  19. David -- well, I'll see what happens without the spam filter. And I know what you're talking about. Sometimes when I post something I really think is good and am anxious to hear what others think I get a weak response. Maybe a lot of readers just want to rush thru and comment where it's easy. I guess I've done the same when I see something that requires a lot of thought and on the spur of the moment I just don't know what to say so I don't say anything.

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  20. Thank you anonymous chain saw guy. Maybe you are looking at the wrong blogs, but I thank you for kind comments on my blog. I looked at your chain saw sites after they appeared to be legit and not harmful to my computer. Thanks for sharing -- next time I'm in the market for a chain saw now I know where to go for advice.

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  21. This just makes me laugh and wonder if you are in the market for a chainsaw.

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  22. I will probably never be in the market for a chain saw, but I just like to be nice to all visitors to this blog. But then again who knows, if I ever move to the country and need to cut trees I might need one.

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  23. I have installed "statcounter" to give me stats on visitors to my blog, but I don't pay a huge amount of attention to it. It's another time issue I think because it is interesting :)

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  24. I've got a sitemeter on my blog and I love to see who is reading me, where they are, what post they read and how they were referred to me. That said, I don't let it rule what I write. Certainly I would love more people and more comments but that is the nature of the beast. My blog try to coax people into having an honest positive dialog about race. That is a hard one. Freebies are great but what I want when I visit is just bloggers that keep it real. Like you. Your honesty and humanity comes through and that is all I want from any blog.

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  25. I have a "sitemeter" and I love checking out who is checking me out. It is neat to see where people are from, what post they read, how they are referred to you and even how long they stayed on your blog. That said,it does not influence what I write. I read bloggers that are real in what they write and show their humanity.
    This is what has drawn me to you Arlee. I say don't change a thing. Maybe some wallpaper. Everyone needs to spruce up and change up every now and then. I just did.

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  26. Debra -- thank you for both comments-- two compliments are better than one! As for the wallpaper, well, that is something I may address in a future blog and something I have thought about.

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  27. I love google analytics but don't understand them! I check every now and again what search words are used to find my blog... I am curiopus that the number one is always 'the torture chamber'... either i'm pretty messed up or my readers are!!!

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  28. Dear Distracted (I sound like an advice columnist),

    I agree about Analytics-- I only vaguely grasp what's going on there. But I love looking at the map to see where the hits come from. The key words do make some sense to me, but that "torture chamber" might be a cause for concern for you -- don't torture yourself over it though.

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  29. Man, you lov your stats hey :) Nothing wrong with that. I just don't share your fascination. Let me know how it all goes though. you still enjoying this bogging thing? Not turning it into plain hard work are you? :) Just checking :))

    I love that you have taken the word verification thing off. I hate those. They take time I don't have. And so short post as also welcome. But if you have something longer to say, say it. My advise would simply be, don't make it longer than it has to be to say what you need to say. Hope that is helpful. It is good practice for writing tight too.

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  30. Tabitha -- like I said I like to see how things work and I like to do things well. I'm like the golfer who takes lessons, goes to the driving range, putts in my office, and studies the game in order to be the best he can be.
    Plus, I am using the blog to create a platform for my future writing career aspirations.

    If a post is worth an indepth comment, that's what I like to leave. Sometimes I wish I would save the comments but I rarely do.

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  31. Hey. I don't normally leave comments, but I just wanted to say thanks for the great information. I have a blog too, though
    I don't write as good as you do, but if you want to check it out here it is. Thanks again and have a great day!

    World of Warcraft Hunter Pets

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I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

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If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee