September 9, 2014

The Most Popular Blog Posts

by Gary Fearon. Creative Director, Southern Writers Magazine

At Southern Writers we stay so busy putting out the magazine, keeping up with contests, updating our social media, liaisoning with authors, and making up words like liaisoning, that it often surprises us when we step back and look at the results.  A couple of weeks ago, for example. we gratefully acknowledged the milestone of one million pageviews here on the blog, a number that has since grown by over 90,000 additional hits.

We take humble pride in every achievement, big or small, but more importantly, we try to assess the why of success.  In the three years of doing this blog, we've noticed a few interesting things about the patterns and behaviors of blog visitors.  Today I thought you might enjoy a rundown of our most popular blogposts of all time, and my guesses as to why they lead the pack.

Before I even start, I would be remiss not to mention the outstanding authors who guest blog on Suite T several times a week.  Depending on their own popularity and social media savvy, they often jump to the front of the line and stay there for a day or more.  But in general, the following posts are the stalwarts that keep returning.

Forward Movement and Stephen King
Not only does Annette Cole Mastron share consistently good insights from her own writing journey, she is quick to praise other great authors.  A focus on Stephen King has led many visitors to find this particular blog post, which is currently our most visited.  I don't know the exact hit count as of today, but it rivals the number of times King cusses in his book On Writing.

METADATA - What Is it? Why Do Authors Need It?
Our editor, Susan Reichert, has a knack for picking important topics that authors may not have had time to look into themselves.  If you don't know what metadata is, you're probably not getting the kind of response you wanted from your website.

5 Ways Authors Can Promote Their Books
Susan strikes again with another post that triggers self-marketing ideas many haven't thought of.

Story Plots from Carrier and the Sistine Chapel
This post by Doyne Phillips is often the frontrunner in the Suite T popularity contest.  If you've ever wondered how air conditioning and The Vatican can help you with your writing (and haven't we all), this is the post for you. 

Dance with the One What Brung Ya
Once again, Doyne the man we call The Emperor rules.  Don't be misled by his folksy charm.  He's a shrewd business guy whose insights bat .1000 every time he steps up to the plate.

You'll notice that some of these blog post titles are very straightforward, while others leave something to the imagination. I myself attempted an experiment which was quite successful when I posted Kate Middleton is Expecting.  That week the numbers were very impressive, when the post became its own self-fulfilling prophecy.  But just like the headlines it reflects, it was a flash in the pan and soon fell behind the Stephen Kings and Sistine Chapels that have more enduring staying power. 

I hope you enjoy revisiting these classic posts as much as I did.  If there are topics you'd like us or our guest authors to cover, drop us a line. Or better yet, be a guest blogger yourself.  Follow the Guest Posting link for submission guidelines, and see if you can write the next post that stays on top.

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