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Quantifying the "success" of an article.

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by daytonadan1983, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. daytonadan1983

    daytonadan1983 Active Member

    I come to SJ looking for feedback and wisdom.

    One of my summer assignment is writing historical feature blogs for our social media campaign for pre-season football.

    I crank out three per week. Monday's involves the College founder's connection to football. Wednesday is about a former championship team or game and Thursday is "Throwback Thursday" profiling a former player.

    The three I did this week:
    1) Was was on the founder's stepson playing on the original team in 1923 and how three of the first four Presidents had family connections to football.

    2) Was how former Jacksonville Jaguar all-pro defensive back Rashean Mathis caught a touchdown pass while playing offense during a game his college senior year in 2002.

    3) Was on a former coach who in 1938, took a leave of absence from training camp to be a part of a Black All Star team who played against the Chicago Bears in an exhibition game.

    I'm allowing myself a modicum of pride for all three, but when it came to interaction, clicks and all the other stats -- the Mathis article had the best numbers.

    So now the dilemna -- write the stuff that generates the most page views because in the immortal words of the South Park Sexy Action School News Team -- "The audience Is dumb and we're just giving them what they want?" or say "What The Frak" because there are some stories that haven't been told and deserve some attention.

    The other reason I'm asking is because a paper said "Nah" to an arena football game stringing gig because the page clicks on the road gamers did'nt justify the expense.

    I appreciate your time and look forward to the discussion.
  2. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    Does your school's site have advertising? If you're like most and don't, the click numbers don't matter much.
  3. The great thing about academia is you don't have to have quantifiable goals.
  4. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    One thing you might think about is how to tie in something that is of current interest and finding a local angle. We just had the 60th Anniversary of the end of the Korean War, anyone leave school to fight? Any local connections to the upcoming class in the Pro Football Hall of Fame?
    Your job is to develop increased exposure to your school, draw more eyeballs. A story that isn't read is like a guitar that is never played. Find a peg. Maybe stick a few story ideas into your "someday" file and dig them out when the time is ripe.
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