Building In Public: March 22 Update
This month flew by.
The focus for Feb was testing new acquisition methods for our newsletter and trying to scale content distribution.
We missed our 500 subscriber goal mentioned last time but easily hit our traffic goal.
We’ve published a lot more content this month and some posts like Kale’s 5 rules for success post got good traction both on the blog and social channels which were good to see. And we started our first giveaway which is still in progress and wrapping up the end of this week.
First our numbers, then I’ll recap what’s worked, what hasn’t worked, and where we’ve been spending our dollars.
So we made more progress in February than we did during the previous 2 months. Across the board, we 2X’d our January results.
Pages per session are up, Bounce rate is still decreasing, and avg session duration is still increasing. While the improvements are not significant I think this shows the content we’re creating and the people we’re attracting are a better match.
Our conversion rate for Feb was 2.58% which is okay. But a huge drop from last month when we were hitting 8.21%. And generally, well below what similar blogs are achieving so, we have a lot of work to do here.
One positive is, we’re starting to get more signups from people reading our content on blogs rather than from posts on social media channels like Reddit. Until this month we didn’t get any email signups from organic traffic – this month we got 7.
Reddit is still our best-performing content channel but is super hit and miss. When I go to a niche like ‘how to increase gym membership sales’ we get nothing. And when I go too broad like ‘3 lessons learned from building an ecom brand’ we get a lot of heat, but not the positive kind.
Broad application with specific tactics posts seems to perform the best and or stories about other well-known entrepreneurs.
Slowly slowly we’re getting more traction on Linkedin. 4 email subscribes, 23 followers of our company page & is now our 4th best traffic source. Compared to crickets for the previous 6 months. We’re happy with the progress we’ve made here.
Long-term I see LinkedIn becoming our best performing social platform.
I started testing content on Pinterest this month. I’m going to give it an hour a week for 3 months and see what happens. Lots of people in forums have said this is a great way to build an audience, others have said it’s dead. So who knows. So far it hasn’t worked but I’ll keep going and see out the test.
Our biggest win this month was testing a giveaway. So far we’ve gained ~120 new subscribers from the giveaway. Although combining the cost of the prizes with ad spend and influencer posts, we might be $1,000 in the hole here.
I think if we finish with 200 subscribers from the giveaway at $5 per sub. That’s an okay result. But needs to be improved, for giveaways to be worth our time and dollars invested.
What this giveaway has proven is that unequivocally the best way to grow an audience is by leveraging other people’s audiences.
Whether a giveaway is the best way to do that. We’re not sure yet, but will be testing more ways to get in front of other people’s audiences over the coming months. Such as profiling entrepreneurs, building relationships with other creators, and running more ads in other newsletters.
Last but not least I added a feedback form to our newsletter and feedback so far is pleasing.
I think a good result for March will be finishing with 600 subscribers and getting monthly website sessions back above 2,000 (which we haven’t hit since November). Let’s see how we go.