A Reader’s Poll
It’s probably me. Or maybe the blog. Or maybe, and this is what I’m really hoping, I’m making a mountain out of a molehill. I’m good at that, at being a craftsman of K2s.
Here’s the thing: traffic was down 3.01% last week and down 6.11% the week before. That’s all I needed to see before deciding I’m headed for complete and utter ruin, washed up, a has been (ta-da!, a K2).
But traffic is a variable, right? An indicator? Please, tell me it’s not necessarily a harbinger of doom. Tell me it could be a harmless, inconsequential blip. No, don’t, I won’t believe you. I’ll still freak out and worry and obsess over it.
I mean, I’ve been mired in a blunk (blog funk) for what seems like forever and, while I tried to maintain some standards when publishing posts, maybe I didn’t. Maybe I’ve been posting crap all along. Steaming piles of the stuff. How would I know? I’ve lost all perspective. Up is down, black is white, and I’m dizzy.
So I keep asking myself: is this the beginning of a trend? Have I lost my relevance as a blogger? Am I not funny anymore; well, assuming I ever was? Are my topics uninspired and predictable? Should I leave blogging to the professionals? Those questions taunt me.
I need your help to find the answers. Maybe we can turn this ship around, bring the old fun back. Make a few improvements here, add new features there, hire a writer, polish this, burnish that, put in an oxygen bar, et voila, a new and improved blog experience for you, my loyal and discerning readers. Would you like that, a better blog experience?
I would, so I hope you’ll give me a chance to shape up and fix the error of my ways. Simply answer a few quick questions and — bada bing, bada boom — we’ll be on our merry way. Please secure your flotation device.
1. Does the content on publikworks stink?
a.) Yes, ma’am, it does.
b.) No worse than usual.
c.) What’s a publikworks?
2. Is there too much whining and complaining?
a.) Yes, there is, you big crybaby.
b.) No, there’s not enough.
c.) I don’t know, I only look at the pictures.
3.) Do you have any favorite posts or topics or categories?
Which ones ______________________?
4.) Would you like more variety?
a.) More videos and music, please.
b.) I like to enter contests.
c.) Poetry slams.
d.) Games are fun.
e.) Happy hour specials.
f.) A mosh pit.
g.) Better, funnier posts would be nice.
5.) Do you have any interest in:
a.) Book reviews and / or recommendations.
b.) More science and astronomy and topical interest posts.
c.) The revival of Half-Baked, our weekly review of new books and music and other hip stuff.
d.) Receiving occasional and offbeat tweets.
e.) Better, funnier posts would be nice.
6.) Would a change in format help?
a.) It wouldn’t hurt.
b.) No, not at all.
7.) How about a complete overhaul?
a.) Yes, change everything.
b.) Nah, leave it alone.
c.) Change is refreshing, but it needn’t be drastic — new curtains will work wonders.
Well, I guess that about covers it. If you have any suggestions or opinions or tips or answers, please drop a comment in the comment box or shoot me an email. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I’ll let you know the results of the poll and of any planned changes in a future post.
Copyright © Publikworks 2012
39 responses to “: do you smell something? :”
I stumbled upon your blog a year ago, and absolutely loved it – so much so that I read everything you’d written up until then in one go (without so much as a ‘thank you’, shame on me), and in my excitement I forgot to bookmark the URL.
Subsequent attempts to find your blog failed: my browsing history had quickly been superseded by other stuff, and later searches for key words I could remember (a dog, a shopping cart, pajamas, ex-advertising copywriter, a mysterious and annoying upstairs neighbor) only took me to lame sites trying to sell me crap or self-help advice.
A few days ago, I decided – for the nth time – that I’d start that much-awaited blog of my own, already, and – as I started typing in “Wordpress” – lo and behold, my browser coughed up your blog. I let out a cry of delight that startled my dog, and promptly bookmarked it (your blog, not my dog) to avoid future disappointment.
The downside, however, was discovering that many secondary pages on WordPress as well as several other sites on the InterWeb have been, of late, *crawling*, if loading at all, on both my browsers of choice (Chrome, Firefox). Even Internet Explorer, my last-ditch option, wasn’t having it. Apparently I’m not alone in this frustration, and I spent the rest of the morning trawling help forums and trying umpteen bug-fixes and plug-in managers and ad-blockers, all to no avail. And still, no blog of my own.
Your blog, too, took forever to load, and when it finally did, it was in that dinky text-only, all-left-aligned way that’s nearly impossible to read. Today things finally seem to be somewhat functional again, so I can finally post this comment.
My (extremely long-winded) point is, dear publikworks: consider for a moment that your seeming drop in readership could perhaps, possibly, maybe, potentially, NOT have to do with the nature of your blog, the quality of your content or, really, anything to do with you at all. Maybe it’s just a glitch in the system – the Internet has bad hair days, mood swings and hissy fits too. If people can’t find your blog or load it because the web’s being slow and idiotic, it’s not your fault and it’s not in your control. Of course you know all this in theory, but sometimes it takes strange blog-stalkers from across the world to gently remind you that you rock.
So I invite you to pick your self-confidence off the floor and continue your wonderful writing. There may be those who, like me, love your blog but lost it by accident. There may be others who stopped by for a bit, but decided it wasn’t their thing, and, frankly, it’s their loss – it doesn’t make you any less hilarious or insightful or entertaining. Do what you do best, and don’t worry about the rest.
Thanks for your patience, and for sticking to your blog despite what the statistics say (87% of them are lies, anyhow). Keep up the good publik works!
What a page turner of a comment, ginkgogirl! I wish I’d known you were looking for me, I’d have sent up a flare. Or put down a trail of cookies or something. Goodness, you were diligent, weren’t you? I love that about you.
I will definitely take your advice and pick my self-confidence off the floor and continue posting on my little blog. Especially because people like you enjoy reading it. So thank you. For taking the time to leave your delightful comment, for the encouragement and, finally, for finding me.
You’ve made my day! I hope I can do the same for you from time to time. And welcome to publikworks, ginkgogirl, please make yourself at home.
It’s a blip! I had one not so long ago but it’s all recovered now. Anyway I agree with everyone, checking your stats too regularly only leads to disappointment. But I can say that I love your blog and have but one criticism: post more often, because I thoroughly enjoy your posts and they’re hilarious!
It was, things have rebounded nicely on their their own.
My goal is to return to three regular posts a week. Slowly, but surely, I’m making progress in that direction. Keep your fingers crossed. And thanks, suzy, I enjoy your visits a lot.
You’re welcome. I look forward to reading them! :)
Oh, if my stats go down by about three people on any given day I feel disappointed. So I’ve stopped myself from looking at them more than once a week. And even that’s too much really.
For what it’s worth, I smell nothing bad here.
phew, what a relief, Sarah! Thank you. I’m so glad to hear I don’t stink. About checking stats, though, my goal is to cut down to once a quarter. Now let’s see how much willpower I really have.
Ok, I’m very new to your blog. I’ve only read the Granny Panties and this one. So, I don’t have enough info to say whether you are improving, but I can say you don’t stink. I wish I had your humor and flair.
Don’t look at the numbers every week. Just check your comments. If your visitors are saying nice things, be happy. Keep going. Only check the numbers every quarter or so. I’ll bet you will continue to see a rise.
Think of it like bread dough. If it rises too fast, it may split and fall.
“Slow and steady wins the race” and all those other old cliches that got that way because they are based on truth.
Welcome to publikworks, Melody! It’s a pleasure to meet you. And thanks for the great advice: checking stats every quarter would be much less stressful and more informative than weekly : )
I hope you’ll come back often. I hope, I hope.
Ok 1- B, 2- B, 3 idk, 4- e, 5-z all of the above, 6-so long as you changed your underwear I think we are ok.
p.s. how is the health treating you these days?
Hi, nevercontrary, how’s the world treating you? I have, in fact, changed my underwear several times since that fateful day. I go to the doc in early June to find out if my thyroid is kaput or still spurting — if it’s kaput, yay. If it’s not, another dose of radioactivity, boo. I’ll let you know
Thanks for the input, nc : )
The world is treating me fairly well. In teacher world summer vacation is here and all is right and good.
Have a wonderful, rejuvenating summer break, nc : )
Hello, I’m sure these other comments have helped but I thought I’d still throw in my little bit. I started a blog at the start of the month but had been considering starting one for a while. Your blog was one of the main things that finally made me commit to it because I thoroughly enjoy your posts. I am now loving blogging so thanks :)
That’s the best compliment ever, thank you. It took me years to start blogging, and I mean years, but once I did I fell in love with it, too. So welcome to the club, jackmcc07! You’re a natural.
Maybe it’s a brunk — blog readers funk?
More pictures of huge, pink, granny-panties, please. Other than that, don’t change a thing.
Oh, no, it’s definitely something I did. But I’ll be on the look out for more photos of huge, pink, granny panties, maybe I can lure them back with those? Good idea, Susan, thanks. And thanks for the support, I appreciate it : )
In my opinion, I don’t really think you need to change anything. :) I’ve only been following you for a little over a month, but I always have fun reading your posts. Here are my answers to your questions – 1) D – I’m going to have to agree with Liezel and add a fourth option there. It doesn’t stink. 2) B – I can totally relate to your comments. 3) Humor is my favorite topic. My favorite posts are the giant undies, the carrot, and the smartphone, so far. 4) A or B – If you really want to add variety. But I don’t think you need to. I like it as is. 5) A 6) C – If you really want to. But again, I don’t really think you need to. 7) B or C – I’d say go for it if you feel like changing things up for fun. And I agree with the others – don’t worry about the numbers, and only change where you want to. Lol, really, I like it as is. :)
It doesn’t stink? Really? You mean it? That’s music to my ears, paige. It doesn’t stink. And the fact you like it is icing on the cake. Thank you, my little friend. You’re a wonderful person!
Funny. You said ‘traffic’ and I immediately thought car traffic. I’m slow – like an old car, in fact.
I like what you have here – blunk or no blunk.
Someone recently mentioned combining blogs – they start a post and pass it to another blogger to finish and post.
Want to exchange the beginnings of a post? Might be fun. Might not be fun.
Here. Have a ‘New’ Coke.
Combining blogs sounds like fun, LD. I’m game if you are. I’m pretty slow my own damn self, kind of like a bus. * sigh * I still don’t have an internet connection, so it’s catch as catch can. But let’s try it, anyway, Okay?
My suggestion is to never worry too much about a specific day or week in your blog’s traffic. A link on one big site or a fast-rising Google search can play havoc with those numbers. Instead, take a look at the trend over time. If you look at your traffic over the last several months, I think you’ll find that you’re still trending upwards. :)
Bless you, Matt. I did and I am. Not by leaps and bounds, maybe, but slowly and steadily. And that’s fine with me. You made my day, thank you. Now I know how to interpret the numbers better : )
I demand a recount. You’re as good as ever before; don’t change a thing. You remember New Coke, don’t you? Blech.
Ha! Angie makes an excellent point. For the love – er dislike – of New Coke, do not change!
If you can’t tell, I’m on a New Coke kick right now.
Your timing was impeccable.
When you put it that way, LD, how can I say no? I don’t want to end up a failed case history like New Coke. Yikes!
Aw, you’re the best, Angie. Thank you. And I do remember New Coke. Double blech.
(LOUD LAUGHTER!) firstly where do you go to work out statistics like that? and you are just too funny. I loved the multi choice! This was a great post and I seriously do NOT believe that your numbers are down! c
Hey, celi! You’ll find such detailed information in your Summary Tables on your Stats Page. It tells you precisely how your blog is faring in the competitive world of blogging. WordPress is very good that way. I’m so glad you liked the post, but my numbers really were down — they’re rebounding, though. Yay! It was great to see you.
It’s your blog and primarily you write for yourself. People come and go all the time so don’t stress too much on the numbers. Write what you enjoy writing about unless you do it for a living. :)
Ahh, the voice of reason. I wish I had one of those, Roly. I don’t, my voices are decidedly unreasonable and very demanding. I’ll ignore them from now on and write what I enjoy writing. Great advice! Thank you.
I like your blog just the way it is!
Hey, did you see this? http://en.blog.wordpress.com/2012/05/15/look-at-these-gorgeous-blogs/
You’re in the user showcase! http://theme.wordpress.com/customize/
Holy cow! Hang on, let me pick my chin up off the floor. I hadn’t seen that, I’m shocked. Shocked I tell you! And flattered, but mostly shocked and stunned and stoopefied. Thanks, Nicole — I hope you know how much I love your blog. If you don’t, you should — it’s amazing : )
whao… chick I think you should not worry about these things. I really enjoy reading your blog. Here’s my answers… 1 – d (not at all), 2-b, 3-e (but what you are doing is great), 4-c, 5-c, 6-c. I am not an experienced blogger like you but I do know that a change is as good as a holiday soooo I encourage you (if you feel like ur in a blunk) make a change… not for anyone but for yourself… Personally I like your blog just like it is. It inspires me.
Worry is what I do best, Liezel, but thank you. I feel better already. Just knowing you’re okay with things as they are is a relief, they can only get better from this point on. Probably. So, thanks, Liezel. It was lovely of you to stop by : )
Worrying makes people age faster… Just saying. I do love your blog so dont you even get it into your head that its stinking. Im not into stinking things hehe.
That’s good to know. I’ll avoid those smelly ones!