12 Sep Content is King!
I was flattered when Dan Abrams came to me in the Spring of 2009 asking for our support in building Mediaite. It was quite a challenge and we had some early struggles handling the traffic and optimizing the WordPress application, but we got through it. We have been involved with nearly all of their properties and continue to support their efforts.
It came as little surprise that the combined properties had their best month ever in August 2012. You can read all about it here. In summary, they had over 17 million unique visits! This is a REALLY big number and I am very pleased that Sound Strategies was involved.
The team at Sound Strategies has some of best developers and technicians in the world (maybe the very best). People come to us with ideas on cocktail napkins and we help make them a reality. However, as good as we are, there is a really valuable lesson to be learned when assessing the success of Mediaite and the other properties. These lessons can be applied to nearly any online media product.
Some domains on the web such as the Drudge Report simply aggregate content from many other sites. They produce very little original content and basically rely on their brand for their audience. Their lack of uniqueness precludes them from being successful in the search engines (especially Google which frowns upon duplicate content). Dan Abrams and his team have focused on writing unique content based on their own observations. I am sure they are carefully watching the news cycle, but they always apply their own opinions to it.
Because the team at Mediaite (and the other properties) do have an opinion, it makes for some very spirited discussion. Their visitors feel compelled to comment on their posts and because of this they have built a very loyal audience. It is important to note that their audience also includes their detractors which help ensure the discussion is vigorous and contains multiple viewpoints.
Taken all together, these sites produce loads of fresh content daily. There seems to be something for everyone on each of the sites. This ensures that their visitors keep coming back. Websites with fresh high-quality content are also treated very well by the search engines. In essence, the same thing that keeps the visitors coming back, also ensures great search engine performance.
However, the Mediaite audience is quite large and deeply devoted to the website. This allows them to publish many articles every day. Websites with smaller audiences and/or narrow topics need to start slow. It is not unusual to start with an article every two weeks and gradually build to a greater frequency.
Success is NOT Fleeting
The lessons demonstrated by Mediaite and the associated properties are valuable ones. They represent the keys to being successful whether you have a bi-weekly blog or a major news site. If you write high-quality unique compelling content and get it in front of the right audience, you will be successful.
Many business owners come to us asking for help building a blog and an audience. We always need to make sure they understand the basic concepts required to build a successful web presence.
I know that we will see many more new traffic milestones for the folks at Mediaite and we will certainly share them with our audience (as limited as that may be).