I like science. Discovering the relationships between cause and effect has always fascinated me.

That’s why I love Internet marketing. It’s easy to see how different email and social  media tactics drive web traffic and other responsive behaviors. I have learned that if you are consistent in your marketing efforts over time, you will see fairly consistent results.

For example, look at the two week snapshot of our web traffic. This is a fairly typical pattern for us; high on Wednesday and low on the weekends.

We have come to expect traffic to spike on hump day because we distribute our email newsletter on Wednesday morning, followed by the live broad cast of MTFW. For the most part, we can predict daily traffic because we  understand the cause and effect of our marketing.

When we do have an anomaly, we dig into data to see what caused it. Why? If we understand what created the traffic, we can replicate the process again and again. So we start by looking at where the traffic came from. Was the spike caused by something we shared on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn?  Was it an article we posted elsewhere, a link from another site or an an event we attended which caused the spike?

In addition to the traffic sources, there are clues in which pages seem to attract attention. Is it concentrated on one great post or a series of posts on related topics? Either way, our readers are voting for the type of content they want to see and we would be foolish to ignore their interests.

It is also important to look at popular pages over time. While some pages are a flash in the pan, hot one day and ignored the next, every now and then a page seems to gain momentum long after the initial publish date. When you see a page that consistently attracts views, this is an indication of a very specific interest.  When I see this reoccurring popularity, I start thinking about a series of posts on the same topic or key word.

But every now and then, there is no explanation.  People just find your content through a random Google search. On those days, we  simply sit back and enjoy the cumulative effect of all the effort we put in to building a robust and comprehensive blog.

photo credit: ell brown via photopin cc