In the first three years of Journalistics, we published 236 posts. In the following four years, we only published 34 posts. While I’m tempted to convince you the past four years were simply a sabbatical (why should professors have all the fun?), it’s hard to justify such a dramatic decline in post volume.
As part of my effort to get the blog back on track in 2016, I spent the past month doing some quantitative and qualitative analysis to better understand how this happened. I’m a firm believer in using historical performance data to guide or inform strategy development (more on that topic in a future post).
For the quantitative input – because numbers don’t lie – I did a thorough review of our Google Analytics data going back to 2009 when we launched. I’ve shared my findings from this exercise, along with some recommendations for action in the form of “lessons learned,” for each insight in the second half of this post (starting with my first insight, “You Can Increase Traffic By NOT Blogging”).
For qualitative input – to add color and context to what actions (or inaction) produced the numbers – I conducted an objective self-assessment. I forced myself to be honest and to take responsibility for the past decisions I made which led me to post less. I’ve shared the results from this exercise in the first half of this post below (“Why I Was Not Blogging”).
Why am I admitting this publicly? I know I’m not the only one to find themselves in a slump. I’m openly sharing this experience, what I’ve learned, and how I plan to use this information to fix things – because I want to help anyone who’s been here, is here, gets here, or wants to avoid getting here all together.
I hope you find this post helpful – if not now, at some point down the road. If that happens, please share your story (it will help me feel like this Jerry Maguire moment I’m having was worth the effort).
And with that, let’s get into the first part of my analysis… the dreaded self-assessment. [Read more…]