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Posts Tagged ‘metrics’

The first week of February was my best traffic week in a long time.

The first week of February was my best traffic week in a long time.

I had a lot of traffic on my blog the first week of February, nearly 12,000 views, one of my best weeks ever. So I must have been busy posting popular content, right? Not really. I posted three times last week:

That’s it. Fresh content accounted for fewer than 400 views that week. My fresh content did better the week before and the week after. In fact, my content from the previous week did better that week than the fresh content did.

Yet I had the busiest week I can remember (weekly traffic stats only go back to July in my WordPress dashboard and I’ve paid closer attention to monthly and daily traffic).

The point here is not to boast about that week’s traffic (or to expose the weak traffic for the fresh posts), but to emphasize the importance of understanding metrics, not just following them blindly. (more…)

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Peyton Manning set a Super Bowl record for pass completions in a game. But he still had an awful game, showing how metrics can be misleading. Photo by John Leyba/The Denver Post. Used with permission.

Peyton Manning set a Super Bowl record for pass completions in a game. But he still had an awful game, showing how metrics can be misleading. Photo by John Leyba/The Denver Post. Used with permission.

Sports uses metrics much better and more creatively to measure success than news organizations do. Sports metrics (sports fans are more likely to call them stats) also illustrate how misleading numbers can be.

You know who owns the Super Bowl record for most passes completed in a Super Bowl? Peyton Manning, who set that record this month in perhaps the worst loss of his career.

Manning, the Denver Broncos’ quarterback, completed nearly twice as many passes as Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson in the Super Bowl for 74 more yards than Wilson. But no one watching that game thought that Manning played a better game. (more…)

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Project Unbolt logoOne of our most important challenges in changing Digital First newsrooms will be measuring success. As I explained last month, Project Unbolt involves changing the culture and workflow of our company’s newsrooms.

But how do we measure our progress? How do we know when we’re succeeding? I’ve asked the editors of our pilot newsrooms to consider these questions as they assess their newsrooms against the characteristics I’ve described of an unbolted newsroom.

In some cases, we will be able to chart our progress using detailed metrics that are already available to us. In other cases, we might need to measure ourselves in some way (and decide whether the time and effort of measuring are worth the insight we gain). In some respects, numerical measurement will be difficult, but we can describe how we operate now and how we’ve changed at some point down the road. Project Unbolt will probably require all of these ways of measuring and more.

(more…)

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Since I blogged yesterday about metrics, and since Chris March mentioned my posts noting my monthly review of my blog metrics, I should review February quickly.

First, though, I should review January, which I didn’t do. After four straight months of record views on my blog, my traffic dropped by 35 percent in January, back lower than it was before the streak of records. I didn’t really need a sophisticated review of my metrics to know why: I didn’t blog as much in January. For much of February, I didn’t blog a lot either. I’ve been traveling and have a large backlog of blog ideas and haven’t posted as frequently as I’d like to.

But two strong posts still had my traffic at a pretty fair pace through the first three weeks of February. And it’s easy to see two lessons from them: (more…)

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