Facebook and Blog Contests Stats

Why do I share so much on this blog? I blog almost everyday and I openly share what I learn here. Some may think that as a “consultant” I would be better off keeping what I learn to myself and only sell it to paying clients. Well if you’re reading this you probably know that’s not how I roll. Besides a big warm fuzzy feeling I get for sharing I’m actually still learning by sharing. What I learn is only one data point in a big sea of data. The feedback I get from all of you is just as important as the initial results.

Now unfortunately I can’t share many stats when working with clients. Many of them share their stats but it’s not my place to take credit for or share their work. However I can share my stats for this blog and things I do here. By doing things here that’s also how I learn.  I’ve taken the level of transparency I have about this blog up a level. Last week I gave you a full report on the first quarters performance, including traffic and subscriber numbers.

To continue that trend I want to share with you the results of the contest we just finished.

The Contest

Two weeks ago I announced a contest to win two autographed copies of Drive by author Daniel Pink (blog & Twitter). The contest was simple, I would giveaway one book a week to people who joined the New Comm Biz Facebook Page and answer one of the many questions I posted on Facebook from the book. You can see the list, with links to all 7 questions.

The Winners

I still haven’t announced the second winner so I should probably do that first. I previously announced Hugh Lee as the first winner and I am now pleased to announce Colleen Carrington as the second winner.

The Contest Goals

My goal was to drive more engagement with current readers and convert more blog readers into Facebook fans not grow the blog readership or grow the Facebook fans beyond the blog readers. Because of that I only promoted the contest on the blog, Twitter and Facebook accounts. I didn’t take out adds or anything like that.

The Contest Results

Facebook fan growthIn total I wrote three posts about the contest over two weeks, posted about 10 times on Twitter about it, added some reminder links at the bottom of a few other posts plus the seven posts on Facebook. I didn’t want to spam my readers about it but wanted to give it enough visibility.

From the time I launched the Facebook Page back in December until the time I started the contest was 16 weeks. We had 144 fans prior to the contest which equals 9 fans a week. When I launched the page I only sent out invitations to a small number of Facebook friends. I don’t remember the total number but it was less than 50 of my total 800+ friends. In the two weeks of the contest we gained an additional 51 fans or 25.5 per week. If I did my math right (which is questionable) that’s a 25% increase in two weeks.

Counting my tweets those three blog posts received about 33 additional tweets. That’s not very much, but I also never asked anyone to tweet for me or did anything else to “juice” the numbers. Any additional tweets, links or whatnot was purely organic.

There was also a significant increase in Facebook activity. This was pretty easy to achieve since I hadn’t ever done anything to garner interaction. The seven questions on Facebook received 19 answers from 12 different people. There were also several wall posts by fans and an increase in likes.

The interesting thing to watch from here will be the level of continued fan growth and interaction even when there is no incentive to do so. I’ll report back on that at some point too.

Key Takeaways

While the contest results weren’t anything staggering they were telling. I’ve never done a contest before. It’s not what people have come to expect here. One potential side effect of the contest was that March was by far the best month on the blog. We set a record month for page views RSS subscribers and unique visitors. I don’t think it was because of the contest but I think the contest contributed to the sense of goodwill and sharing.

What Did You Think?

Like I said at the start of this post. Any learning is just a data point in time, it’s only part of the story. I would love to have your feedback on how it went. Was it a fun change in what we usually do here? If you thought it sucked please don’t hold back to spare my feelings.

  • Did you enjoy the contest?
  • You most likely did not participate, why not?
  • Would you like to see us do more contests?
  • What should I do better next time?

Next Steps

As I think about the content strategy for the New Comm Biz family of properties (blog, Facebook & Twitter) I know I need a specific strategy for each property but I haven’t decided what that is. Any suggestions are welcome.

New Comm Biz is looking for guest posts as well as regular contributors: Blog With Us.

Photo credit by Bikerock

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Q1 2010 Blog Report [Stats]

Facebook StormtrooperGood day stakeholders. At the end of the fiscal year 2009 I reported that this blog was no longer about me. The focus of the blog is serving up great content that ads value to you. This makes all of you my board of stakeholder and as such I want to be transparent with you and share my blog stats and future plans with you.

The blogs stated purpose is :

This blog is dedicated to examining the cataclysmic changes social media is having on business. We’re not trying to predict its future, we’re trying to help create it.

Report Card

The first quarter of 2010 has been our best year yet and March was by far our best month ever.

For Q1 our unique visitors was up 129% and overall site traffic was up 122% over the previous quarter. New visits and time spent on site have all increased. However page visits are down slightly by 2.51% and bounce rate has increased by 0.23%.

March saw over 300% growth year over year in unique visitors and overall site traffic. March 2010 we had over 17,000 page views and over 13,000 unique visitors. As of March 31 we have 2,149 subscribers to our RSS feed.

Also of note; we are currently #69 on the Adage Power 150. And the LEGO pictures we’ve been using for most posts seem to be a hit.

Twitter and related sources (Twitterfeed, Hootsuite, Tweetmeme, etc) and direct traffic (most of which is from Twitter clients like Tweetdeck and Seesmic) are the single largest source of traffic. Organic search is down to only 12% of our over all referring traffic.

Here is a PDF of the March analytics report. Let me know if you’d like the full quarter report.


The New Comm Biz Twitter account has 289 followers and is on 36 lists but right now the account is just a feed with no engagement and only minimal content besides the blog posts. We need to develop a solid strategy for the Twitter account that adds value beyond an alternative to RSS.

The New Comm Biz Facebook page has 184 fans but a significantly higher amount of engagement since the launch of our Drive book giveaway. I am personally much happier with the Facebook page and its direction than the Twitter account. After the Drive book contest we will begin looking for other ways to interact with and add value to our Facebook community.

Bellow you will see our Facebook stats. I am considering doing some  light Facebook advertising to see what kind of an effect this has. We received $100 in free Facebook advertising from a conference so will probably give it a try.

This week I also announced the New Comm Biz Social Newsletter. This will be an interactive newsletter that we mail to readers who sign up. We have even created it’s own dedicated page.

Future Considerations:

Disquss has been a little buggy at time. I like much of it’s functionality and cross platform, community nature, it’s been marking a lot of legitimate people as spam. If things get worse I may switch back to WordPress’ native commenting system. How do you like the current commenting system compared to other blogs you comment on?

At some point if Twitter, Facebook and our list of contributors grows I may look at getting help with community management. If you have any thoughts on this let me know.


With the addition of the Social Newsletter page and the Blog With Us page I have successfully replaced all of my personal content and migrated it to my /tacanderson Posterous blog.

Our most popular posts are posts about Twitter. Not surprising since that’s where most of our traffic comes from. Of our top 10 posts for the month four were about Twitter and contained Twitter in the headline. Two posts were about social business. One post was the original review of the book Drive. The other three were about personal branding, the story of the employee who had to delete his LinkedIn profile and the fictional post I wrote about social media dystopia.

We posted a total of 30 posts in March 28 from myself and two very popular posts from Jason. I feel that Jason’s post have been a great addition to the blog and I am now going to more actively pursue contributors and guest posts. I have added a Blog With Us page and will add more prominent placement to the home page and Facebook page.

If any of you wish to contribute to the blog please send me an email: [email protected]

This post will make the 700th blog post and we currently have 1,658 comments.

My request to you my board of stakeholder I would ask for your guidance and recommendations. The open questions are how to better use Twitter and Facebook to add value to our readers, how we can get more contributors to the blog as well as any other recommendations you may have.

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