One of my missions is to provide information and insights to small businesses and other social media marketers like myself. And my mid-year metrics deck is often one of my best opportunities to assess and evaluate my own performance. I hope you find some valuable information here. And if there is some other data you’d like to know about, please let me know in the comments or by contacting me directly.
Here’s the single page report. If I can simplify and get it on one slide, I find it makes a better discussion item for our meetings.
The biggest loss so far this year has been Facebook’s new pay-per-view strategy that has virtually taken Facebook out of the mix as a top engagement driver. And I did not have any viral hits this year. (Yet!)
So what this has done is brought Organic Search into the limelight for my traffic support. And without any big winners in the page front, most of that traffic has come from the long-tail content that comes from blogging over the last 4.5 years and having some deep topics that are driving small numbers, but highly interested visitors. While my publishing and promoting is the biggest driver for over all traffic, this blog maintains an average of 2,000 – 3,000 views even if I’m not actively blogging. This is 100% the result of organic search. I do not pay for any traffic. (No PPC and no Promoted posts on Facebook.)
And while I did not have any viral hits, I did have one piece of content that is an over performer. And while it’s not directly related to my core business model, it brings new viewers and potential subscribers.
Here are yesterday’s page view stats:
And right there in the middle, The Career Path Template. I used to promote this content on my own sidebar, but decided to reserve that space for items that are related to my core business. The majority of the traffic to this page is from search and social sharing. And while I promoted the heck out of the top two stories (most recent content) I didn’t drive them much higher than my top page. Again, finding a few anchor content topics and driving them, updating them, and becoming an authority on the subject, is a good idea for those days or weeks when you are not actively writing and promoting your blog. Let the
content good content do the work.
What really fell off the cliff this year has been Facebook and Linkedin Groups. I can no longer count on any significant numbers through either of these networks.
And finally, my MAIN OBJECTIVES:
- generating leads
- building authority
Generating leads: I drove an additional 100 views to the contact page over last year for the same period. And as a secondary strategy I created two “business” sites for SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING and SEARCH MARKETING to attempt to capitalize on more direct marketing and specific asks for business. These sites generated an additional 2oo views. I’m still unclear about the results of this activity overall. My funnel is not a direct line. And often I use the blog and my work as a calling card for the consulting work I do. And for the most part, those people already have my contact information, so I am not as dependant on my “contact” page than I might be if I were a total ecommerce play.
Building authority: My site has been picked up by News360 and Huffington Post. And while these relationships haven’t driven significant traffic, they do lend credibility to my work. And with my HuffPo author’s page, I am certain I am getting some link love and authority from Google. And of course I have connected those pages to my Google+ profile under “Contributor” so that they are associated with searches related to my work or my name.
Overall, I have been a bit less focused on the blogging, and as a result my traffic has dropped. And since I cannot rely on either of the three sites to actually drive leads and business, I have to go direct and network myself. But my blogging sure does lend credibility when I’m talking to a small business about content marketing, or building editorial calendars for publishing and promotion. And I often open up my own site to show them examples of how it works.
By doing we learn. Blogging teaches ME about content marketing in a direct way. How can I advise companies and teams on blogging when I don’t really “get” it? And the more effort I put into the blog the more traffic and results I have. And while this activity is not easily tied to my leads or revenue, I know that my reputation is my main selling point as I offer my digital marketing and consulting services. Can you trust a digital marketer who is not actively engaged in actually doing the digital marketing? I don’t think so.
Let me know what I’ve missed. The comments are always open.
Note: This metric just came in from SumAll for my recent activity and it illuminated an interesting point for me.
If Facebook and LinkedIn are killing my opportunity for referrals, where should I turn my attention? Um, let’s see, what company controls 90% of search, and shows all of my posts to all of my followers? Oh, yeah, Google+. Are you working your G+ followers?