Tag Archives: Blog

One Day Left and I Have Learned So Much – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

I started this blog challenge with the stated goal of generating blog traffic of 1000 unique visitors in 30 days. That would be a 30 fold increase over the several months prior. The real goal, however, was to try out blogging as a valid homework assignment for my upcoming class of Foundation of Marketing…..as a semester long project. It doesn’t look like I’m going to hit the thousand unique visitor goal but I this has been an incredible experiment. I didn’t hit the numerical goal but I definitely hit the learning goal.

Let’s talk numbers first. My blog had been averaging 30 or so unique visitors a month……which is actually impressive since I only posted once this year. Right now, August’s traffic is at 666 unique visitors…….yeah really but with your visit, I’m at least up to 667. I went from 1 blog post in the prior seven months to 13 in August. Honestly, I don’t think that is a rate that I can maintain. Good for a scrum activity to build content but I simply don’t have that much to say. Going forward, I think I’ll maintain a one to two post a week cadence.

Where did all of these visitors come from? Well the majority came from search engine marketing, also known as SEM, also known (in this case) as Google Adwords. There are a lot of ways to do SEM, Google Adwords is probably one of the easiest for a newbie blogger. Many blog hosting platforms are already set up to work seamlessly with Google Adwords. Several even offer credit for your first ad. WordPress, my platform for example, offered $125 free advertising with a minimum spend of $25. That beats a BOGO offer……by a lot. I wasn’t expecting much out of SEM, to be honest. My experience has been that you pay around $2 a click…..$150 total spend (my money plus Googles) at $2 a click…..I figured SEM would generate around 75 visitors to the blog. Oh man, was I wrong? I didn’t realize that the cost per click in India was so low…..around $0.07 a click. As of last night, SEM generated blog traffic just below 600 visitors in about a week with a spend of only $40. Most of my visitors are from India but they are engaging in the blog as well as visitors from other sources and countries….at least as measured in page visits per visitor. The visitors from India don’t seem to be too willing to click like or hit share or even comment. Hey, if you are from India, you are welcome to break the trend and leave a comment. Let me know you’ve been here.

So 90% of the traffic generated was from SEM. That’s great on one level. It well exceeded my expectations and will help my SERP rankings a bit, as long as I keep advertising. I don’t have any expectation that I’ll keep advertising though, since I don’t have any way of making money on my blog other than advertising……which isn’t very lucrative. (I’ve spent $40 in SEM and I earned $0.03 in advertising fees. I do have one affiliate marketing post where I signed up for affiliate marketing for WordPress and put up an offer of 20% off this month. That was the only reference to affiliate marketing BTW and no takers.

Where did the other 60 or so visitors come from? The next three sources of blog traffic were from LinkedIn, WordPress reading area and Facebook. I don’t really use Facebook but I have a lot of connections on LinkedIn. I’m not really a Linked In Open Networker (Lion) but I’m pretty free with gathering links. This blog has also been around so I do have a few followers. I think, though, that the traffic that came in through WordPress was probably more due to the interactions I had with other bloggers. I’ve read more blogs in the last month than I have in the last year…..probably longer. Whenever I read a blog, if I had anything that even remotely contributed to their post, I added it in the comments. Leaving comments behind does leave a link behind but I believe that the biggest lift I got was from the bloggers themselves checking me out. That is not a scalable activity though. Sure, I spent an hour or so a day interacting with other bloggers which got me dozens of visits but there is no way I could have invested the time to turn that dozens into thousands. There is simply not enough hours in the day.

Anyway, my blog’s “day” ends at 9 PM eastern time……..at least it does according to where the traffic stats are assigned……I have no idea why. So just over a full day left and I’m over 300 visitors away. Unless you go on a massive sharing, liking, commenting binge on my blog and blog posts, I’m not making it. I might report in one more time tomorrow but I’ll give a full reporting on Saturday.

Oh, BTW, I’ve decided to NOT assign this to my incoming fall class. I’m going to blog at a weekly rate (or twice a week) over the course of the fall semester. I’m sure I’ll learn a whole lot more over the next four months. Assuming that I’ll teach again in the spring semester, I might assign the blog to them.

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It is a challenge – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Update: Beginning of Day 9 and blog post number 4. The results are mixed. I made my last post three days ago and the initial traffic was amazing. We had nearly 30 unique visitors on that first day. The next day, you ask? ONE!!!! One visitor. That’s it. Three likes, which was nice. To be completely honest, that one visitor went to a post I wrote two years ago……..not challenge related at all. The day after that? Yeah, I don’t want to talk about it……..but I will because it is you. I wouldn’t do this for anyone else. The second day after my last post was two visitors. At least, their traffic was challenge related.

The days are ticking away and the traffic is inconsistent at best and is still very light. I mentioned some passive ways to improve traffic. What we need now is

One active measure you can take to get your blog out there is to get talked about in the media…..ok, so how do you do that? Well, luckily, someone has already done a lot of the hard work. How do you think reporters find experts for their articles? “Help a reporter out”, also known as HARO, is a website that you can join for free at https://www.helpareporter.com/. Once you sign up, you will get two to three emails a day with lists of requests from someone looking to write an article (or a radio or television piece). You then can email the author/reporter with your answer to their request, a short bio (yours preferably) and your contact info, including your blog. If the author is interested, then they will contact you about their desire to use your input. If they do, you will credit and your blog will receive a mention and probably a link.

The emails you receive from HARO are broken down by topic, “Biotech and Healthcare” and “Business and Finance” for example. HARO isn’t going to be useful for every blog because of the subject matters the reporters are interested in. From the few emails I’ve received already, it appears that if your blog is about sex and intimacy, travel, decoration ideas or anything medical…..you will strike it rich at HARO. You do need to respond pretty quickly though. I did respond to one request on how social media fits into integrated marketing. I submitted my response about 12 hours after the HARO email and I got a response that already received the responses they need.

One interesting feature of the HARO requests is that it (generally) tells you which organization is requesting help. Two of the requests in this mornings email came from Andrea’s World Reviews. This allows you to go check out the site and see if it is the right fit for your blog. You can also get an idea of how much traffic the site has. Use a tool like – http://www.siteworthtraffic.com/ – to get a lot of great data about the blog. I put Andrea’s blog through their tool and see that they estimate she is getting 524 unique visitor’s a day……which is 15k visitors a month….or 15 X my goal for this challenge. I am humbled.

I will review the HARO emails and let you know if future posts whether or not I’m successful getting placement. I haven’t seen a lot of requests for marketing as of yet but I’ll keep looking.

I’m interested. What do you think of the challenge so far? Is this an interesting challenge for students in a marketing foundations course? Any suggestions on how to make it more successful. Please leave me a comment and let me know. Additional, as always, please hit the like and share buttons.

Image credits:

Taking a Blogging Break – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

Update – Day 5 of Challenge and 3’rd post: I think I may have a done a little bad math in my last post. By “may have,” I mean I totally messed up the math. Forgot to carry the two or some such thing. Basically, I correctly stated that I was looking at two days of traffic but then when I then went to compute my average run rate, I assumed the cumulative traffic was daily traffic, instead of two days worth of traffic. That is, I doubled the traffic in my calculations. And they call me analytical. You can see my mathematical blunder here: https://wolskisuccesspartners.com/2019/08/03/30-day-blogging-challenge-pictures/

Updating the math…….and doing it correctly this time…..in five days, we have had 31 unique visitors….I might be two of those, so let’s call it 29 unique visitors. That’s an average of 5 a day (I’m intentionally rounding this time, so the math is still good)…..up from the old reliable one to two unique visitors a day but no where near the 30+ we would need a day to hit a 1000 unique visitor target. Worse yet, five days have already passed with us fairly massively underperforming our target. As any good sales or marketing professional knows, when you underperform your quota in the beginning of the month, you have to over drive it for the rest of the month. We need a daily average of almost 40 unique visitors for the rest of the month to hit our target……..the plot thickens and the challenge becomes…..challengier??

oh no

Doing my research for posting today, I got a little humbled by another blogger, Cristian Mihai. Cristian writes a blog about blogging. Today he wrote about the purpose of blogging; namely “people.” People connecting. People discussing. People sharing. Etc. And I’m dedicating a month all about gaining and growing blog traffic. Yes, people are at the heart of it but I’m being pretty mercantile about it. Read about it on his blog here https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/79658252/posts/3019. He definitely has a point…….and now back to total commercial motivation.

Two things I have done in this post that helps build traffic are first, I linked to my own article at the end of the first paragraph. Some readers will be interested in more reading or background material. By linking to your own posts, assuming you are providing some interesting content, the unique visitors you do gain are of higher value as they are spending more time on your blog and clicking on links.

The second thing I did was to link out to another (higher traffic) blog. Cristian Mihai is a blogger (mentioned above) with a blog on wordpress. As I’m also using wordpress, I know that he will get a pingback that I linked to his blog. This is a passive way of gaining some interest from blogs that have a higher traffic. I’m putting together a post on how to more actively build links from other higher authority blogs but for now, we will stick with passive.

One thing I will do today that is active is to ask for you to like this post and share it. Please click any of the buttons that look like below:

Well except these buttons. They are only for demonstration but click any of the other buttons to share on your own social media. Thank you

Where to get Pictures for your Blog – 30 Day Blogging Challenge

We are about 48 hours and one blog post into the 30 day blogging challenge with a goal of turning my blog, which was getting around 50 unique visitors a month, into a high traffic blog with 1000 unique visitors in one month. You can read about our launch of the challenge here: https://wolskisuccesspartners.com/2019/08/01/30-day-blogging-challenge/.

In our case the month of August. How are we tracking so far you ask? I’m glad you did. Normally, in 2 days, this blog would have seen 3 to 5 unique visitors……in other words, a ghost town. In the last 48 hours, we received 14 unique visitors. That’s 3X to 4X the traffic. Not bad for one post. Now, to reach 1000 a month, we have to average over 30 unique visitors a day. Therefore, we seem to be on track. If we can now double the daily traffic and maintain that for the entire month of August, we will hit our target. Full disclosure……I might accidently be one or two of those unique visitors. I was looking for links and content on a couple of different devices and ended up on my blog……Let’s shoot for 1002!

One mistake I did make is that when I changed up the look of this blog to make it appropriate for the 30 Day Blogging Challenge, I accidently removed the share buttons. I believe I fixed that now. One bit of advice for getting any of your blogs or other online content shared as far as possible is to ask YOU, the reader to share the content. For example, my son watches a lot of YouTube, specifically DanTDM and EightBitRyan. In every video, they each ask the viewer to like and share their content. Think of the liking and sharing as the price you pay for free content. With all of that in mind, I added back the sharing buttons and I will now officially ask: If you support this effort, liked any of what you’ve read or simply support the concept please like and share this post……please!!!!

I did find an interesting post, “10 Keys to Make Millions Blogging”: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/272517. I’m not out to make millions blogging, although it would be nice. I imagine if I made even a paltry million dollars on this blog, I would have hit at least the 1000 unique readers target……..I assume. You are more than welcome to go read the making millions blog written by Timothy Sykes. I didn’t previously know anything about him. I read this blog and a couple others of his on the http://Entrepreneur.com website. He seems pretty informed, although I’m not a fan of how he implies how easy it is to become a millionaire blogging. Of course, if I earn a million off of this blog, I will apologize…..in a blog post. Seems only appropriate. I can summarize his ten key steps pretty succinctly: Post interesting and well written articles frequently and market your posts through social media…….It does look better in a list form but that is pretty much what he said. Take a look for yourself if you wish.

One point Timothy Sykes made in his millionaire blog that is not part of my summary is to invest in high-quality pictures. I totally agree. It is actually easier to get decent images than you might think. As with many online issues, google is your friend. For example, I found the Don’t Give Up image at the top on google. It led me to Flicker on the account of dahon. She appears to be a yoga enthusiast. This image is attached to her 30 Day Yoga challenge.

Finding free, usable and appropriate images is pretty easy on google. First, search for a relevant key term. For the 30 Day Challenge, I googled “30 Day Challenge.” Not terribly creative but it got the job done. Then switch your results to images. Then select the settings filter:

Under settings, select “advanced search.” You should see this screen.

scroll down to the bottom and select “Usage Rights”.

Then you can select either “free to use or share, even commercially” or “free to use, share or modify, even commercially”. These images are free for you to use. It is appropriate to give credit to whomever you are borrowing the images from. For example, you can celebrate with fireworks below from pxhere.com. Well, you can celebrate immediately after you hit like and share to your favorite social media.