It’s always a good idea to mark your end result against what you intended to achieve when you initially set out.
You can actually learn a great deal from it. It helps to establish what worked well and perhaps more importantly what didn’t. It serves as a lesson to learn for the future.
When I began my niche blog I outlined the purpose and my reason behind it as follows:
“The purpose of my blog is to investigate how Father’s seem to get treated unfairly in Family Court cases – and how this has led to protest groups such as Fathers 4 Justice. I will look at the press they receive and explore what impact the media now being allowed to report on cases has had.
I am covering this area because having been a child that was part of a custody battle, I felt extremely let down by the system, and witnessed first hand how fathers and children are failed.
The point of my blog is to demonstrate that each case should be based on its own merits. “
Unfortunately on reflection it is clear to me that I did not achieve all I hoped to. Although this was a problem close to my heart and one which I felt needed more attention to help those concerned, I found it difficult to generate new content and focus on discussion areas on a regular basis.
Consequently one of my major failings comes from the low number of posts. I started off reasonably well posting every few days and then trailed off all together.
Therefore it stands to reason that I failed to achieve everything I set out to do.
I always had good intentions to get the blog up and running again and to make full use of it, but we all know the road to hell is paved with good intentions, so unless you act upon them, regrettably they do not count for much alone.
My very first blog post about Claire Wardle’s lecture which I believe remains my post with the biggest number of hits on any one day at 39 (I’m pretty sure I may have accounted for some of them) started with such enthusiasm for this new-found medium (new to me at least anyway).
I seemed clear, although rather intimidated by it all, that I needed to make sure I was using social tools to my advantage in order to reach those who desired content.
I discussed the importance of Twitter (again something which was completely new to me) and the fact that it shouldn’t be ignored.
I suppose I can take one thing away from it all at least … I now go on Twitter everyday, sometimes several times each day, and I often wonder what I did before this new-found love/addiction/whatever you want to call it.
But yet I failed to use the tools available to their full potential and this also contributes to my blog’s downfall.
In my first post on the niche blog I explored the issue of family courts being opened to the media. This was something that had caught my attention back in 2009 when the decision was made by Jack Straw.
I found it interesting both in terms of the perspective of a journalist but also from someone who had been through the family court system.
As a stand alone post it served as good background information to the subject matter, and could have served as a decent platform from which I should have properly launched my blog.
However, although it may have been reasonably informative, I do not feel it was particularly engaging.
Perhaps this was because I had consciously taken the decision to make sure the tone of the blog was more authoritative and less conversational compared to what I offered on here, my course blog.
My niche blog just never really had much going for it. I never got round to developing it into something which reached out to my niche target audience.
Surprisingly my course blog was far more successful despite its content being based on what I was learning in the online lectures, and therefore something which may have only made sense to those involved.
Yet my overall site visits on this blog well exceeded those of my niche. And I’m pretty sure we all got sick of reading pieces which covered the exact same topic as we were writing about so I doubt they all came from my fellow coursemates.
I do feel however that I did develop this blog better as time went on and I began including new aspects such as links, maps, photos, videos and even sound recordings, and this was something I failed to do with my niche.
I keep mentioning failing, which isn’t great to be honest, but there are some things I do think I managed to do well in my blogging career.
Personally I would rate my capture Cardiff project as my most successful post, even if it did not attract the biggest number of hits.
I incorporated many of the skills I had acquired since starting the course. The post certainly looked more interesting than most of the others.
I found it difficult to know how to attract people to my niche blog. I would share the link on both Facebook and Twitter and I know this was successful in getting site hits, but I didn’t know how to get more.
Many of the blogs I wanted to link my niche to, such as Fathers4Justice would not allow you to leave comments and this made it hard to interact with other people who potentially may have been interested in my work.
In the future I would like to do things differently to turn my blogging failure into a success. I often view words as my tool but I know I need to use more than just them.
Looking after the elderly – good example for using tools
Will family courts being open to the media improve standards? – good background info, but needed more to it
Mothers who fail to comply with court orders – my last niche blog (which received the most hits at 18) perhaps I was getting on to a good thing.