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Reflections Of A Virtual Events Blogger


In the 6+ months that I’ve been blogging about virtual events, virtual tradeshows and virtual worlds, I’ve learned a lot.  I’ve learned from the research that I’ve done in this arena, I’ve learned from insightful comments left here by readers and I’ve learned a bit about blogging.  I decided to skim through the nifty historical charting provided by WordPress and thought I’d share some insights into what’s worked well here.  Let’s start with the most obvious one – the top 5 blog postings (by page views – listed by top post first):

  1. Review: Lenovo’s eLounge Virtual World – what I learned here is to create timely blog content that associates with major events.  Lenovo unveiled their eLounge virtual world (powered by Nortel’s web.alive) at CES 2009.  I decided to download it, try it out and review it.  Because my posting was a relative first (in terms of eLounge reviews), it got the lion’s share of search engine traffic.  I saw this both in referral data and by tracking relative rankings on the search engines themselves.  Additionally, a large amount of traffic was sourced from a popular blog about Nortel (allaboutnortel.com).
  2. Interview With Nic Sauriol, Venture Lead on Nortel’s web.alive Platform – if you strike a chord with an interesting posting, ride the momentum and generate follow-on postings that provide more information (or additional insight).  Nic Sauriol provided me with a virtual tour of eLounge (for my original blog posting), so I followed up later with an interview, asking Nic to provide new information on web.alive since the eLounge launch.
  3. Insights And Experiences From Virtual World Experts – here, I summarized a panel discussion for which I was an audience member.  It featured top notch virtual worlds experts – and as a result, this blog posting received a great deal of referral traffic from related blogs (e.g. Wagner James Au’s New World Notes).
  4. How To Use Social Media To Stay Current On Virtual Events And Virtual Worlds – this posting had the benefit of being posted on StumbleUpon, which generated a nice spike in traffic.  Hard to say whether the traffic surge resulted in new, regular readers – or whether they were one-time, curious Joe’s.  Regardless, I learned how powerful a single referrer (e.g. StumbleUpon, digg, etc.) can be.
  5. Hey Kids! I’ve Got a Virtual World For You – much of the traffic for this posting is due to SEO – it contains terms that are popular in search (e.g. My Little Pony, Webkinz, Club Penguin, etc.) – while I did not write this with the intent to generate search engine traffic, it does demonstrate the importance of writing content with SEO in mind (if your goal is to generate traffic from SEO).

Here’s a chart that demonstrates the power of referrals:

Source: WordPress Data for It's All Virtual

Source: WordPress Data for It's All Virtual

Here are this blog’s Top 5 Sources of Referral Traffic:

  1. allaboutnortel.com
  2. StumbleUpon
  3. Twitter – I promote new blog postings to my Twitter feed, which is kind of like RSS for all of my Twitter followers.  If they’re not subscribed via an RSS reader, the tweet helps nudge them to come back here 🙂
  4. WordPress Dashboardvery interesting – other WordPress bloggers are finding this blog by clicking on links promoted/suggested by WordPress in the blogger’s dashboard
  5. WordPress Tags – tells you the importance of properly tagging your blog content

Top 5 Search  Terms (that resulted in traffic to this blog)

  1. Miscellaneous terms related to Lenovo eLounge
  2. Virtual Calendar
  3. Virtual Events
  4. Virtual Worlds
  5. All virtual worlds (I guess it’s good to have your blog name closely match a search term)

And finally, the Top 5 clicked-upon links (within my blog content):

  1. Overview/download page for Lenovo eLounge
  2. My Twitter page – shows the importance of a permanent/prominent placement [top right of this blog]
  3. Facebook Group (Virtual Event Strategists) – shows the importance of a permanent/prominent placement [top right of this blog]
  4. Project Chainsaw web page (for Nortel’s web.alive)
  5. YouTube video on Project Chainsaw

What’s worked well for you and your blogs?  Leave a comment below to let us know.

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5 Responses to Reflections Of A Virtual Events Blogger

  1. Wow amazing post! Thanks so much for sharing.

  2. tesoroevents says:

    You’re quite a publisher Dennis. Thanks very much for the insights.

  3. Gina M says:

    I am interested to learn, from an event promotion/awareness perspective, what pre-event education is needed to get buy-in from attendees that participating in a virtual event will be worth their effort. And likewise, is there a similar concern for securing non-professional speakers, a.k.a customers? So essentially what I’d like to know is do you need to build a “value of virutal events” into your marketing plan… or is that a no-brainer for most professionals today?

  4. Dennis Shiao says:

    Gina – yes, you certainly do need to convince potential users on the benefits of attending. One particularly useful tactic is to develop a short Flash movie (with voiceover) that explains the benefits – and gives potential attendees a ‘taste’ of the virtual event environment.

  5. Gina M says:

    Thank you, I appreciate the insight. I keep wondering if most of the world is “getting” the value of Virtual Events or is it just those within the event community that get it. So building a communications plan around the value of attending, supporting and sponsoring is needed, at least in the case of our program.

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