Last week I had an interesting talk with Ramit and Matt in New York. At one point the conversation turned to Matt's site, and Ramit started asking him a few questions about it. Actually, it was more like an interrogation.
"Who is your average reader?"
"Someone who's looking for travel information."
"How old are they?"
"Eighteen to thirty."
"Not good enough. Give me a two year range."
"Well, mostly people who have just graduated college and want to backpack around the world."
As Ramit dug deeper and deeper and Matt scrambled to come up with answers, I realized that I know far less about my readers than Matt or Ramit know about theirs. Ramit pointed out that unless you're speaking directly to the person who's reading your site, even your ideal reader won't be fully engaged. For example, say I want to become a better writer. A blog post about "how to write better" probably won't catch my attention, but an article called "how to write better blog articles for people who write bi-weekly about travel and self improvement" would immediately grab me.
So to get a clearer picture of who I'm writing for, I'd like to humbly ask you to take another short survey. At the end I ask for your phone number and/or email. If you feel comfortable sharing that with me I may contact you to ask you some follow-up questions. I know I just had a survey a couple weeks ago and I feel bad posting another one so quickly.
You can fill it out below, OR you can click this link.
Thanks! I've also started getting serious about Google Analytics. I'll post what I've learned in a week or two, and may write an article about how to really integrate Google Analytics with your Wordpress theme.
Last week someone complained about an affiliate link to Amazon. Here's my policy: I will only link to products I have bought and love (unless otherwise noted). If there's an affiliate link for it, I will use it. If there isn't, I'll still link to it.
Currently reading Talent Code. WOW. Great book. Post about that book and Talent is Overrated is coming soon.
Heading to Burning Man for the first time on Saturday. I'll be at 9:00 and F, so if that means something to you, feel free to come by and say hi.
I enjoy your blog! Do you have a twitter or fb page? I'd like to get together and focus on a couple of things. I appreciate you for all of your work.
Filled it out for you. Definitely think that information is key.
Would love a solid google analytics post. Basics on it are easy to read but using it for more specific reasons is confusing to me.
As for affiliate links, definitely think your policy is good. Can always be 100% clear about whether it's an affiliate link or not, because from what I've found, if someone is going to click through to purchase, they will do it whether they know its an affiliate link or not, sometimes it may even encourage them to click through (to help you out) if they believe you are credible and trust you as a person, which, obviously all of your regular readers will. And that way you don't have to deal with the backlash of "omg i didn't know it was an affiliate link".
A quick note about Google Analytics, site metrics, and user tracking in general. Be careful that your sight's page's do not become dependent on pieces provided by these organization to finish loading. I and many other privacy aware folks block as many advertising/user behavior tracking sites as we can find. I can't tell you how many sites and pages hang or break because of that. For instance home depot won't load their home page or most other pages because I refuse to download an applet that's supposed to allow some sales guy on their end to interact with my screen.
Um. WTF? Really? I can't go to homedepot dot com to look at hinge without downloading a copy of some approved malware from an "metrics" site?
You're going to Burning Man on Sat 9/4 or you left on 8/28? I hope it was 8/28 as there is way too much to see and do! You'll be missing out HUGELY if you just arrive on 9/4 as on Sunday almost all the major camps start tearing down.
I replied to this questionnaire too, because I feel that the quality of your work definitely improved since the last one.
Regarding the affiliate links: as long as its not a bland push to sell but a review with useful info about something you obviously read/use and got value from I personally don't see the harm in it. I personally followed quite some gear advice and was never disappointed.
Maybe by definition, but not in spirit.
I've been thinking a lot about BTYB / LN over the past couple weeks, which lead to the survey from yesterday (please take a minute to fill it out if you haven't already). Tonight I had a conversation about all this with Carl Zetterlund, a long time reader who is doing a segment of LN with me right now.
So, I think it's time to make some changes. Here are the problems, as I see them:
A few years ago I saw some amazing videos of 'Where the hell is Matt,' who danced all over the world.
Today I stumbled across another mind numbing performer and internet sensation, Marquese Scott.
They both do amazing things with dance, in two completely different ways. So I put the question to you for the comments: Who's more amazing, and why?
A few years ago I saw some amazing videos of 'Where the hell is Matt,' who danced all over the world. Today I stumbled across another mind numbing performer and internet sensation, Marquese Scott. They both do amazing things with dance, in two completely different ways. So I put the question to you for the comments: Who's more amazing, and why? Marquese: > Matt, 2006: > Matt, 2008: >