April was not only dedicated to the topic of kindness but was also busy with the A to Z Challenge. Now that it’s officially May, it’s time for some reflection on how it all went.
(If you’ve read the post on Music and Words and are only interested in the specific stats about this blog, skip to “Increase Readership”.)
What did I learn during the month?
As kindly asked by the organisers let me go through some of the learning points of the challenge. I participated with 3 of my blogs: apart from this one The Script Bible and The Road to Happiness and I also volunteered as an assistant to one of the organisers, Nicole. With the challenge my goal was:
- to stress myself with the regularity of posting daily
- to increase readership on the blog
- to build connections on twitter
- to have fun reading otherwise non-related blogs
So how did I do?
I started to plan the posts WAAAY in advance. Had the topics nailed and almost all the post titles as well. But then as a major procrastinator, the actual writing of the posts didn’t happen in advance despite of all the plans. I wrote most of them on the day or the day before or sometimes a couple days in advance. But in April.
There were some delays and combined postings but all in all, all letter was managed to be included. In retrospect if I’ll do multiple blogs again, advanced scheduling would make my life a lot less hectic.
As my blog is only 5 months old, my total views according to wordpress statistics is 631. Out of which 311, ie close to 50% happened in April. I’m happy with that.
I received 53 comments in April which constitutes of 45% of all comments on this site. In April 24 people decided to follow the blog, which is almost 40% of all followers and there was some more right before the challenge begun.
I think the topic resonated with a lot of the readers even though it was my main blog, Music and Words that appeared on the vast majority of my comments.
Before April set off I created a list for bloggers on twitter and it now has 81 members. This includes everyone, active or inactive. I also took part in one of the AZchats which was a great way of touching base with the other tweeters. I think that was one of the new things in the challenge that has a lot of potential for later years, maybe extending it to other social media platforms.
Reading non-related blogs
Although I didn’t read other blogs every day, when I did, I went way over the average 5 – it’s hard to stop once you start. I found blogs in 4 ways:
- those who commented/followed my blogs
- those who used the hashtag on twitter
- those who were assigned to me as an assistant
- randomly selected ones from the list
I really liked the emphasis on the connections and the support to lesser visited blogs this year, I think it’s absolutely great. I haven’t read all the posts on the main blog but visited it at least twice a week. Some posts I enjoyed, some posts were useful, (some both!) and I think everyone found something for their own style. I was surprised the organising blogs didn’t receive more of the limelight but I think it’s the style of the challenge: it’s not about the few but about the many. I think some kind of discussion forum would be great so that bloggers in similar areas and/or with similar topics could connect. The overall noise of social media doesn’t really allow discussions like that. I’ve also found that writing blogs dominate the challenge, I hope that this can be perhaps expanded. I think the greatest asset of the challenge is its’ flexibility though and I’m glad it could be maintained all these years.
All my favourite wordpress blogs are saved in my readers and twitter and G+ will be essential in keeping in touch with those on blogger. I’m a little worried that that will be more difficult, haven’t found a proper solution for collecting blogs from that platform. (All ideas welcome.)
The blogs themselves will continue their lives as usual, My Road To Happiness with focusing on Relationships, The Script Bible on youtube and spotify, and on the Music and Words I’m trying to connect music and writing with weekly tracks as prompts for short pieces. Anyone is welcome to join as a participant and of course as a most precious reader!
Thank you again for accompanying me on this journey this year, hope you all had fun here and on other blogs and looking forward to read you soon!
Special thanks of course to Arlee and the co-hosts!