Expanded Editorial Focus is Succeeding (Survey Results, Part 6)

(NOTE: This is part 6 of a series exploring the results of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, which was completed by 157 respondents as of Aug. 18, 2004. See the complete index for more survey results. Additional results will be published in future entries.)

Question 6 on the CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey was:
Over time, CONTENTIOUS has shifted its main editorial focus from the craft and business of online content to a broader range of communication topics (such as webfeeds, journalism, blogs, notetaking, and wikis). Do you like our current direction?

Here’s how the 157 respondents to this question answered:

  1. 35.7%: Somewhat like
  2. 30.6%: Strongly like
  3. 20.4%: No effect on my opinion
  4. 12.7%: Somewhat dislike
  5. 0.6%: Strongly dislike

Here’s what these numbers mean…
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Most Popular CONTENTIOUS Topics (Survey Results, Part 5)

(NOTE: This is part 5 of a series exploring the results of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, which was completed by 157 respondents as of Aug. 18, 2004. See the complete index for more survey results. Additional results will be published in future entries.)

Question 5 of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey was:
Currently, which of our main topics of coverage interest you most?

Each of the 157 people who answered this question could select as many options as applied (so the percentage total below exceeds 100%). On average, each respondent selected four options. Here are the results:

  1. 64% Writing and editing tips
  2. 53% Content management
  3. 53% Online content style and business
  4. 38% Weblogs and blogging
  5. 34% Media commentary (journalism, entertainment, etc.)
  6. 33% Webfeeds (RSS, etc.)
  7. 30% Tools and services (Furl, feed readers, etc.)
  8. 30% Recommended links
  9. 27% E-learning and training
  10. 17% Misc. commentary
  11. 13% Wikis and blikis

Here’s what those numbers mean…
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The Power of Links (Survey Results, Part 4)

(NOTE: This is part 4 of a series exploring the results of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, which was completed by 157 respondents as of Aug. 18, 2004. See the complete index for more survey results. Additional results will be published in future entries.)

Question 4 on the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey was:
How did you first find out about CONTENTIOUS?

Here’s how the 157 respondents to this question replied:

  1. 44.6%: Link from another site or weblog
  2. 26.1%: Not sure
  3. 11.5%: Personal recommendation
  4. 7%: Web search (Google, Yahoo, etc.)
  5. 5.1%: Online discussion forum (e-mail or other)
  6. 3.2%: Webfeed search or tool (Feedster, Syndic8, etc.)
  7. 1.9%: Mentioned in a print publication or book
  8. 0.6%: Trackback/pingback

Here’s what those numbers mean…
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This Week’s Grab Bag

Here’s another roundup of items that have caught my attention lately:

TOP OF THIS WEEK’S LIST: Work Talk Writing Tips, by Elizabeth Brenner Danziger, author of one of my favorite books of practical writing advice, Get to the Point!. I always recommend her work to my coaching clients. Also read her other collection of tips, Writeamins. And subscribe to her monthly e-mail newsletter (she doesn’t offer a webfeed yet). Danziger offers some of the best, most concise writing advice available.

Here’s the rest of the list…
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My Blog and Your Career (Survey Results, Part 3)

(NOTE: This is part 3 of a series exploring the results of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, which was completed by 157 respondents as of Aug. 18, 2004. See the complete index for more survey results. Additional results will be published in future entries.)

Question 3 of my reader survey asked:
Why do you read CONTENTIOUS?

Here’s what the 156 people who chose to answer this question said:

  1. 64.3%: Professional interest
  2. 48.7%: Personal interest
  3. 17.9%: Academic interest
  4. 5.1%: Other

Yes, I know that adds up to more than 100%. Respondents could check all options they felt applied, but most checked only one or two options.

What those numbers mean…
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Most of You Visit Here Weekly (Survey Results, Part 2)

(NOTE: This is part 2 of a series exploring the results of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, which was completed by 157 respondents as of Aug. 18, 2004. See the complete index for more survey results. Additional results will be published in future entries.)

On the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, question 2 was:

How often do you typically read CONTENTIOUS articles?

Here are the results for the 153 respondents who answered this question:

  1. 51.6%: Weekly
  2. 21.6%: Monthly
  3. 20.2%: Daily
  4. 6.5%: Rarely (less than monthly)

What this means…
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Warning: Slight Site Weirdness May Occur

OK, it’s finally happening – I’m finally freeing CONTENTIOUS from the numerous deficiencies of Movable Type blogging software, and moving this blog over to a new server.

(NOTE Thurs. Aug. 19: Due to some server shuffling last night, my site was temporarily down. Sorry for the inconvenience. Obviously, it’s fixed now. I love technology.)

…Well, rather, my husband/sysadmin Tom Vilot is handling all of that stuff for me. I’m a content pro, not a genuine computer geek. I’m simply not adept at server-side gyrations, but Tom’s a whiz. He just hasn’t had much time over the last few months to take on this task, but now it’s finally happening. Thanks, Tom!

The big advantage of this switch is that I will be able to turn comments back on for this blog. I’ve missed that feature badly, as have many CONTENTIOUS readers. It just doesn’t feel like a real blog to me unless there’s an ongoing, visible conversation via comments.

During the first few days of this switch, it’s possible that there might be some kinks to work out (broken links, weird page layout, etc.). Please report to me any problems you experience, since you might notice something I’ve missed.

More about this change…
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Finding Content Pearls within Your Organization

When writing for an organization’s web site, blog, e-mail newsletter, or other venue intended for an external audience, one of the biggest challenges is finding ways to keep the project interesting – to your online audience, as well as to yourself and your coworkers.

At organizations, too often online content ends up mundane or bland. It reads like it might have been written by people who were bored out of their minds, who didn’t care about the subject, or who couldn’t be bothered to think about it. They just wanted to get the writing over with so they could “put something up there” and be done with it.

Creating your organization’s online content shouldn’t be torture. If you approach this task with the right mindset, it can be more like harvesting pearls…
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CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey Results (Intro)

It’s been a few weeks since I offered the CONTENTIOUS reader survey, and so far 157 people have taken a few moments to complete it. Thank you so much, everyone who participated! (If you still want to participate, you can take the survey now.) This information is incredibly valuable. It will help me stay aware of who my readers are and what you want, so I can consider your needs in my editorial decisions for this weblog.

I’ve been poring over the results and considering what they tell me – but I’ve been putting off writing my promised report on the results because there’s just so much to say. Well, the beauty of the weblog format is I don’t have to cover it all at once!

So here’s what I’m going to do: Over the next week or so, I’ll tackle each of the survey questions in a separate entry. I’ll link them all back to this entry as an index page – so if you want to link back to the survey results as a whole, you’ll probably want to link to this index page URL: http://blog.contentious.com/archives/000316.html

INDEX TO THE CONTENTIOUS READER SURVEY RESULTS:

  1. Newbies Outnumber Longtimers (length of readership)
  2. Most of You Visit Here Weekly (reader frequency)
  3. My Blog and Your Career (why people read this blog)
  4. The Power of Links (how people discover this blog)
  5. Most Popular CONTENTIOUS topics
  6. Expanded Editorial Focus is Succeeding (how readers like this publication’s shift in focus)
  7. My E-mail Alerts are More Popular than My Webfeed (fresh content alert preferences)
  8. Readers suggest new CONTENTIOUS topics

Stay tuned, there’s still more to come…

Newbies Outnumber Longtimers (Reader Survey Results Part 1)

(NOTE: This is part 1 of a series exploring the results of the 2004 CONTENTIOUS Reader Survey, which was completed by 157 respondents as of Aug. 18, 2004. See the complete index for more survey results. Additional results will be published in future entries.)

Here are the results for survey question 1:

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN READING CONTENTIOUS?

  1. 38.2%: 1-6 months
  2. 34.4%: Since before it was relaunched as a weblog (pre-2003)
  3. 13.4%: 7-10 months
  4. 10.2%: Less than 1 month
  5. 3.8%: This is my first time

What this means…
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