Friday, May 25, 2012

Revisiting Popular Blog Topics

According to my stats, I have written 570 posts over the past five years. I'm sure some of them weren't all that interesting, but others have staying power and are visited again and again, even today.

What makes a popular topic? I suppose I could research it, check to see what people are looking for, but I tend to write about whatever strikes my fancy at the time. Sometimes a post may involve a celebrity illness or death - but those posts don't usually give me a huge uptick in traffic. They don't have staying power. I may get several visits over the course of a few days, but then the celebrity is forgotten and people aren't searching for them any more.

Other times, I hear about something in the news that triggers a post. That happened this month with my post on shoes (Stilettos or flats - no compromise?). Other times, I'll hear about a topic and think, hmm, yes, that would be good for a post. And then I promptly forget all about it. I tell people I have a great memory - it's just way, way too short.

A topic I thought would be interesting, but wasn't:

Health information is the number one topic that people search for on the Internet, according to some stats I read (from a reliable source!). So, with this in mind, I thought it would be important to explain why it's important to ensure your information sources are credible. After all, Dr. Google is always in the house, but is she always correct? To help this, I wrote Searching for Health Info on the Internet - in May 2007. I'm not sure if my stats program is right, but apparently, it's only been read three times. Oops.

And yet, one I wrote because of something I was going to have done, was looked at 187 times: Root Canals. How Lucky Is That? It wasn't overwhelmingly popular, but it was more so than how to find information on the Internet.

People like learning things about the professionals they come across - that is something I have learned. My short post on the difference between physiotherapists and occupational therapists is read quite frequently, at least a few times a week. And several people have read What do nurses really do?

My posts on suicide have been clicked on many times. Every time I write about suicide, I think about my brother, who ended his own life. It's a tough topic to talk about, but suicide and anything about mental illness NEEDS to be talked about. It's the only way people who need the help will get it. As long as being mentally ill has a stigma, it will be hard to admit you need help and to get it once you have reached that point: If It's Suicide Prevention Week in Quebec...  and Suicide, not a disease, so no walkathons, ribbons, or research race.

Topics about seniors and the elderly get a lot of attention on my blog. One I wrote, How do you speak to the elderly?, was written out of frustration. I hope that my comments there have helped some people adjust how they speak and the words that they use.

And my most popular blog post? It has been read almost 12,000 times since I posted it in July 2007: Broken Hips in the Elderly Can Lead to Death. Who knew that one would be so popular and continue to be so? I sure didn't.


Jan said...

This is a great roundup of your blog posts. Thank you for the idea.

Unknown said...

Marijke, thanks for the round up. And thanks for opening up about your brother's suicide. My grandma committed suicide in 1990, and even though she was 95 and had lived a long, productive life, the experience was devastating to me. Definitely time to open up about that issue, instead of hiding...

Jane Neff Rollins

Julie Farrar said...

This is a good roundup. I've been meaning to go back and analyze my posts. I know that a couple got amazing numbers of visitors because of celebrity names I used in them. Of course, they didn't stick around when they saw I wasn't a gossip site. However, I guess it told me my blog was easily searchable since so many found it.