Here’s a summary of milestone achievements for the Blog Goals that I established for February 2015 when I participated in Blogging 201 and Writing 201: Poetry.
1. Expand Readers and Traffic
I have reached my target goals to expand readers and traffic with views, posts, likes, and comments. I had not set any goals for site visitors or email subscribers, but those have increased. Although improving, I came up short with followers on Wordpress Reader, as well as Twitter and Facebook social networks.
For each Target, here are the Goals with the Current statistics and amount Over (on Feb 28), as well as the starting Base count (on Feb 2), along with Growth % for the Increase (Current – Base) over the past month.
Many music artists have favorited and/or retweeted my posts on Twitter during February. This includes several replies with thanks and blog compliments, and those with an asterisk (*) are even following me: Michele McLaughlin*, Philip Wesley*, Fiona Joy*, Christine Brown*, Tim Glemser*, Doug Hammer*, Brad Jacobsen*, Vin Downes*, Ed Harris*, Joseph Akins, and Michael Logozar, as well as Austin Town Hall*, Texas Music Office*, and SXSWfm.
2. Extend Content
Also, I have successfully extended my blog’s content. Besides my Twitter activity and interactions, I have increased range and diversity beyond music with my poems from the Writing 201: Poetry workshop. I will continue to create additional posts with travel, photo, writing, and other blog topics that will interest more readers and realize the focus described on my About page.
For Writing, I took the plunge and participated in the Writing 201: Poetry course so I could learn more about poetry. Although I considered this to be quite a stretch for me, the challenge interested me so I registered to give it a try. Actually, I was quite surprised that I composed six poems (Water, Journey, Trust, Animal, Fog, Hero) by the end of the two weeks; however, I still have four more to finish over the next several days (Fingers, Drawer, Landscape, and Future) since I got a little behind.
Regarding Photos, although I didn’t start participation in weekly photo challenges yet, I have been following them and intend to join them during March. I considered registering for Photography 101 again since I enjoyed it so much the first time, especially with all the community interaction. However I decided that I will involved in photo challenges instead, while also trying to follow the assignments as well.
3. Enhance Brand
Finally, I have enhanced my brand with the initial focus on site’s sidebar and menus. I reviewed my site for possible improvements and focused on overhauling my sidebar, where I removed many of the widgets that had been incrementally added over the past several months. Based on constructive reader feedback during my Blogging 201 refresher, I tried to simplify it as much as possible, and comments have been favorable about the site being much cleaner now.
I’m currently examining my site organization and menu structure for further refinements, where some updates are needed, redundancies eliminated, and general simplification. Reviewing blog statistics, as well as likes and comments, has helped with this analysis too. I still need to determine whether another blog title, tagline, and theme would be appropriate.
I have started efforts to provide renewed focus for older content, such as music and photos.
With music, I created a series of Music Roundups by genre (Country, Americana, Pop, Folk, Indie, Alternative, Piano, etc.) with links to earlier music posts grouped by month since September when I started the blog.
Also, more recently I have just started creating Playlist posts for existing music artists on my web site such as George Strait and Tim McGraw, and will continue that during March. I’m already doing that for all new music posts with recent ones like Brandy Clark, The Band Perry, Rod Picott, Slaid Cleaves, Meiko, Stars, Lenka, Ruby the RabbitFoot, The Head and the Heart, The Aikiu, Family of the Year, Michele McLaughlin, Philip Wesley, Ed Harris, and Conspirare.
Thank you for helping me reach my goals.