Hey y’all! So last month I mentioned that I had set specific monthly goals for growing both my traffic here, and the number of downloads to my podcast. What I’m going to do is every month this year I will give you an update letting you know if I hit my goals for the previous month, and also letting you know what my goals are for the current month. I’ll also share with you the most important lessons I learned over the past month. I want to do this to hold myself accountable to the goals I’ve set, but to also give you a way to learn from I’m doing. So many people and companies want to know how to grow its blog readership, and podcast audience. This year we’ll look at my efforts to do both.
First, here were my goals for January:
Blog – Traffic of at least 50,000 visitors.
Podcast – At least 750 downloads.
Breakdown of My Blog Traffic
My blog traffic for January was 53,783! So I comfortably hit my blogging goal for January! Pretty excited about that.
Posts written – 12 (At least 2 every week, which was my goal)
Most popular post written in January (based on views) – The Most Boring Answer to the ‘How Do I Build More Traffic to My Blog?’ Question
Detailed Analysis of Traffic Sources
Here’s where my traffic came from in January:
Organic Search – 83.46%
Direct – 9.15%
Referral – 4.19%
Social – 2.93%
Email – 0.19%
Other – 0.08%
Two things jump out to me from these numbers: For me, organic search is way too high, and social is way too low. I would like to see search fall to around 70% and Social rise to 10-15%. I just worry when my traffic is that dependent on one source.
Something else that’s interesting, check out the numbers for time spent on site:
Average time a visitor spends on this blog – 47 seconds
Average time a visitor coming from search spends on this blog – 41 seconds
Average time a visitor coming from social spends on this blog – 71 seconds
Average time a visitor coming from Twitter spends on this blog – 74 seconds
Average time a visitor coming from Facebook spends on this blog – 73 seconds
Interesting, huh? A visitor coming from a social media site spends about 80% more time on the site versus a visitor coming from search. This suggests that the search visitor is just coming to get something and leave, while the social visitor is more likely to look around a bit.
Also, I’m noticing that the engagement numbers I am seeing on Twitter are surprisingly low. According to Twitter, even though I have over 50,000 followers, most of my tweets are seen by less than 1,000 people. Yikes! I’ll probably be spending a bit more time on Google Plus to see if I can raise social traffic and engagement there, since I have a much larger network there versus Facebook or LinkedIn.
Now my goal for February is to hit 54,000 visitors. This looks like it should be easy since I almost did that in January, but don’t forget that this month only has 28 days. In fact I am currently on pace to only hit 50,000 visitors for the month. So even if I miss my goal for this month I’m not too worried due to it being a short month. However, I am going to try to get back to writing 3 posts a week starting next week. Just in case!
Podcast Numbers and Overview
If you listened to this week’s episode of #FanDamnShow you know I already did a breakdown of how the podcast did in Jan, and my key takeaways. Please check out that episode if the podcast stuff is what you are interested in.
Goal for January – At least 750 downloads
Actual number of downloads for January – 737
I missed my goal by 13 freaking downloads! Ugh! But still very close and my goals for the podcast growth was really aggressive. For reference, the podcast had 133 downloads for all of December, and 737 in January. Still, a massive jump.
Here’s daily downloads for August 1st, 2014 through January 31st, 2015:
As you can see, very low daily downloads, typically less than 10 a day, until the end of December and through January on the right. That’s when I started putting out new episodes on a weekly basis. From August 1st through December 29th, I put out 3 new episodes of the podcast. From December 30th through January 31st, I put out five new episodes of the podcast, one every week. If you are wanting to build an audience for your podcast, consistency is key. Putting up a new episode on a regular schedule is vital to your show’s success, as this graph proves.
Two important lessons I learned from doing the podcast in January:
1 – It’s very important to script out the flow of each episode before recording it. I didn’t do this for the first couple of episodes in January, and I noticed my thoughts were kinda all over the map. When I started writing down a script, just the key points I wanted to talk about and in the order I wanted to talk about them, it really helped the flow of the episodes, and it made it much easier for me to keep my thoughts organized.
2 – It’s very important to thank the people that are promoting your show. What I noticed was that each week people were promoting the show for me, especially on Twitter and Facebook. So I made a point of doing a shoutout to them on each show, then I let them know I did so after the episode went up. Just a small way to say ‘Thank You’, but everyone loves to be appreciated, right?
So that’s how my January went, and what I learned. Again my goals for February are:
Blog – At least 54,000 visitors.
Podcast – At least 850 downloads.
I’ll be back here in a month to let you know how I did!