The Offbeat Empire has two servers: one for all the blogs, and then a separate smaller server for the Offbeat Bride Tribe. At exactly 1:02pm PST today, the blog server went down. I caught it the minute it happened (I was editing Stephanie's pitches for next week's Offbeat Mama posts), and here's where things went from there:
Across all the Offbeat Empire sites, we've always had our sharing bar (you know, the thing that allows you to easily Like or Send via Facebook, Tweet, Pin, etc) at the end of the each post. The theory here was basic: you read the post, then you share.
But I had an aha moment looking at another blog where I realized that share bar also gives an indication of whether you should read the post…so I moved it. The results were immediate and dramatic.
Of Offbeat Bride's 500,000 unique monthly users ("unique users" being an analytics term, although my users ARE very unique in a more general sense), about come to the site from a search engine.
So the question then becomes, what incredibly brilliant SEO strategy did I use to get traffic like this?
Here's my answer…
Go to Pinterest's general weddings page ONE DRINK: When I see a pin from Offbeat Bride TWO DRINKS: When I see something that makes me want to write a WTF post Surely there are more rules. Help me?
I LIKE MARKETING. Done correctly, I strongly believe that it can be helpful, useful information. Done poorly, it's irritating. Done really poorly? It's a form of assault.
My Empire work makes me a target for a lot of marketing campaigns from both small businesses and large corporations alike. Both make marketing mistakes. Here are a few that you can learn from…
Earlier than expected, the THIS! function is back — and it's better than ever! Here are the improvements:
- Now it's a sexy little button instead of just a text link
- When you click it, you'll see the THIS! count immediately updated to reflect your vote
- You can cancel your THIS! by clicking unTHIS!
Oh, DERP. You ridiculous meme. You have replaced words like DUH, DOY, D'OH, and DER in the vernacular of millions, a quick three-letter word to say "That was hilariously stupid of me!" Unfortunately for DERP, there are some people who've used it derisively, using it to mock those with developmental delays or disabilities. Based on these contexts, some people now see the word as offensive.
So, why do you occasionally see the word on Offbeat Empire posts?
I love that so many people on the internet are committed to encouraging us all to examine our privilege and carefully consider the ways that words have impact. But there are times when I can see it start to slip into a game, and all-too-often the well-intended corrections have an unhealthy amount of white guilt mixed in. There are times when it feels like checking your privilege has become almost a form of performance art for young white people online.