This weekend was a first test of my latest blogging project: MiddBlog, keeping students informed as to what’s happening on the Middlebury campus. I did a preliminary test of the site this weekend by emailing the 150+ leaders of students organizations, asking them to consider posting their announcements on MiddBlog (under the premise that begging admin’s to send mass emails and plastering campus in posters are both not a good ideas). My real motivation, however, was simply to get them to view the site. I know that gaining readership and participation will be a slow process. Getting the site in front of the some of the more important students on campus should help the site grow organically. I think the content has been decent so far but the real issue is that I am only one individual looking out for the good stuff. It would be a lot better to have more people on the lookout and posting.
The result has been mixed so far. I am recording an average of 30 visitors a day, peaking at 80+ on last Thursday when my first email went out. What is good is that my average visit length is relatively high at 5+ minutes per visit. In the age of spending a few seconds on a webpage, to get a visitor to read your content for five minutes is pretty good, for my purposes.
I will continue the MiddBlog project but will streamline down the time spent on it while looking for people to take on the project as their own.