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Posts tagged with 'podcast'

2017 Year in Review

January 01, 2018 mgroves 0 Comments
Tags: podcast analytics couchbase seo

This has been a good year for Cross Cutting Concerns. I had some amazing guests on the podcast. The C# Advent was also way more successful than I anticipated. And I also made some important technical improvements to the site.

Google Analytics

I pulled the top 50 most viewed page from Google Analytics. The top 10 pages that were viewed the most this year are listed below. The C# Advent page got over double the views of the second place page. (The second place page is a post from 2014 on ASP Classic that baffles me with the amount of traffic it gets).

PagePageviews
The First C# Advent Calendar (2017) 5503
Using HTTP/Json endpoints in ASP Classic (2014) 2413
Command/Query Object pattern (2014) 2229
How I use Fluent Migrator (2014) 2010
ActionFilter in ASP.NET MVC - OnActionExecuting (2012) 1386
Parsing XML in ASP classic (2014) 974
Visual Studio Live Unit Testing: New to Visual Studio 2017 (2017, Couchbase Blog repost) 964
AOP vs decorator (2012) 954
SQL to JSON Data Modeling with Hackolade (2017, Couchbase Blog repost) 895

That's right, some of the most viewed pages on my site have to do with ASP Classic and XML. These are posts I did on a lark during a consulting gig back in 2014.

It always seems like the posts I do on a lark are the ones that take off. For instance, over at the Couchbase Blog, I believe I have the most viewed blog post of 2017 with Hyper-V: How to run Ubuntu (or any Linux) on Windows. This is a quick post I wrote as I was learning it myself, and it keeps raking in the views. It's #2 on Bing and Google when you search for "hyper-v ubuntu", so that helps.

I'm not just looking to raw views, though. I would like to have some measure of the quality of posts. If you know of any metrics that might help track that, please let me know. Google Analytics has a "Bounce Rate" which might be useful to look at. The 10 pages with the lowest bounce rate (out of the 50 most viewed pages) are all podcast posts!

PageBounce Rate
Podcast 060 - Dean Hume on Progressive Web Apps 67.21%
Podcast 056 - Jeremy Clark Convincing Your Boss on Unit Testing 70.65%
Podcast 053 - William Straub on Recruiting 71.76%
Podcast 052 - Angie Buccilli on Recruiting Secret Sauce 71.76%
Podcast 028 - Jeremy Miller on Marten 74.73%
Podcast 062 - Ted Neward on Akka 74.79%
Podcast 030 - Steven Murawski on Rust 76.47%
Podcast 041 - Eric Potter on C# Pattern Matching 81.54%
Podcast 061 - Eric Elliott on TDD 81.74%

I'm going to speculate and say that podcast pages have the lowest bounce rate because they a prominent and immediately useful call-to-action link (i.e. "listen to this podcast"). Excluding the podcasts, the top 10 links with the lowest bounce rate are:

PageBounce Rate
A Coryat scorekeeper for Jeopardy (2014) 82.35%
The First C# Advent Calendar (2017) 83.30%
Autocomplete multi-select of Geographical Places (2014) 85.39%
Lessons learned about Fluent Migrator (2014) 85.92%
AOP in JavaScript with jQuery (2012) 86.46%
Terminology: cross cutting concern (2012) 86.58%
Adventures in Yak Shaving: AsciiDoc with Visual Studio Code, Ruby, and Gem (2017) 87.42%
An Audit ActionFilter for ASP.NET MVC (2012) 88.13%
Using HTTP/Json endpoints in ASP Classic (2012) 88.95%

Once again, ASP Classic appears, but it's interesting to see a mostly different set of posts here. The average bounce rate for the top 50 most viewed pages is 90.80%. So these all beat the average (if that has any meaning).

Podcast Analytics

I've done a poor job of tracking podcast analytics since I started the podcast. I assumed I could grab download numbers from Azure (where I host my podcast files), but that turns out to be incredibly painful. I mainly do the podcast for fun and because I want to talk to enthusiatic tech people. But in my attempts to get sponsorship, I quickly realized that I needed a better solution for analytics. I signed up for PodTrac, but only after season 2 was finished. So these numbers aren't going to be very impressive. Season 3 onwards should provide more useful analytics. The top 10 are the 10 latest podcasts that I published (which makes sense).

The #1 most downloaded episode based solely on my better late than never PodTrac analytics is #061 - Eric Elliott on TDD.

Tech improvements

I've made some changes to Cross Cutting Concerns to hopefully improve SEO and your experience as a reader/listener.

  • HTTPS. I host this site on a shared website on Azure, so it's not exactly straightforward. But I used CloudFlare and followed this blog post from Troy Hunt.
  • HTML Meta. I added Twitter cards, tagging, description, and so forth. This makes my posts look a little nicer on Twitter and search engines, and hopefully will improve my search rankings. If you want to see what I did, hit CTRL+U/View Source right now and check out all the <meta />
  • If you clicked on some of the top 10 posts earlier, you might have noticed a new green box with a call to action. I've put this on some of my most popular posts to try and drive some additional engagement, page views, and podcast subscribers.
  • Image optimization. pngcrush, gifsicle, and jpegtran losslessly optimize images so they are smaller downloads. This will help with my Azure bill a little bit, and also improve page speed. It's currently a manual process, so sometimes I will forget.

What's next?

Based on the analytics I'm seeing so far, I'm going to:

Continue:

  • Reposting my Couchbase blog posts. These help drive traffic back to my employer's site and increase awareness of Couchbase. Which is my job!
  • Podcasting. I'm enjoying it, some people are listening to it.
  • Keep podcast episodes short. I get comments in person about how the length of the shows (10-15 minutes) is just right. I'm going to expand by a few minutes (see below), but episodes will not increase in length by much more than that (unless I feel like making a longer special episode).
  • C# Advent. I've heard that this helps people get traffic to their blogs. I'm definitely happy with it, and it helps the C# / Microsoft MVP community. I'll start recruiting writers a little earlier in November 2018.

Start:

  • Adding some more fun to podcast episodes. I've got an idea to add a little humor to each podcast. Stay tuned!
  • Podcast sponsorship. I've lined up a sponsor for 6 months of episodes. Let's see how it goes. I'd like to use this money to buy better equipment, pay for hosting, and maybe even purchase tokens of appreciation for guests.

Stop:

  • Tracking podcast downloads with Azure and FeedBurner.
  • People from using ASP Classic. Somehow.

Podcast 067 - Season 2 Finale

November 13, 2017 mgroves 0 Comments
Tags: podcast

That's a wrap on 40 episodes of the Cross Cutting Concerns podcast for season 2. I'm going to take a break from recording over the holiday season, and resume posting new episodes in February 2018.

If you want to be a guest next season, you can! Just:

Click Here to Sign up to be on my Podcast!

Instead of sitting at your computer and hitting F5 waiting for a new episode, why don't you check out some other podcasts? Below are some recommendations. These aren't tech podcasts (though EconTalk does occasionally venture in this area), they are just for funsies:

The background music for this episode is God Rest Ye Merry gentlemen by New Aging Sons.

 

Matt Bok is back yet again (again!) for an extra long, extra special episode. (Check out episode 16 and episode 26 for his previous episodes). Just in time for the holiday season, we discuss the SNES Classic, NES Classic, Nintendo Switch, Atari Box, and other stuff.

Tons of show notes:

Want to be on the next episode? You can! All you need is the willingness to talk about something technical.

Theme music is "Crosscutting Concerns" by The Dirty Truckers, check out their music on Amazon or iTunes.

Sam Nasr is all about getting involved with user groups.

Show Notes:

Sam Nasr is on Twitter.

Want to be on the next episode? You can! All you need is the willingness to talk about something technical.

Theme music is "Crosscutting Concerns" by The Dirty Truckers, check out their music on Amazon or iTunes.

Patrick Smacchia is building NDepend to make refactoring and technical debt decisions easier.

Show Notes:

NDepend is on Twitter.

Want to be on the next episode? You can! All you need is the willingness to talk about something technical.

Theme music is "Crosscutting Concerns" by The Dirty Truckers, check out their music on Amazon or iTunes.

Matthew D. Groves

About the Author

Matthew D. Groves lives in Central Ohio. He works remotely, loves to code, and is a Microsoft MVP.

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