The Story of My Google+ Experiment: Halfway Home!
Revisiting my Google+ writing experiment, using some data to show progress.

I'm used to it by now.

That look you get when you tell someone that you write for fun is always different depending on the person. Some people look at you with admiration, but mostly, they're totally confused and perhaps even a little appalled.

"So you just your spare time?"

"Well, yeah, but not as much as I want to," I'd usually reply.

It's the same exact reaction I get when I tell people I love to cook if they don't also enjoy it. Cooking (or writing) to them is a chore, something that everyone has had to deal with but no one should ever choose to do, let alone enjoy.

We're halfway home!

Just over two weeks ago, I decided to start an experiment. Pushed in large part by +Mike Elgan and others who are Google+ power users, I shifted 100% of my original posts (not counting small quips and link sharing) to Google+ exclusively.

I lay out my goals and thoughts in more detail on Day 1 here:

At the halfway mark, Google+ has been far and away a better place for me to write. There are three main reasons why it's in the early lead:

1. Pressuring me to write
I feel pressured to write here more frequently if it's my main platform. I know Google+ has a built-in audience of at least 12,600 people for me (unlike my blog on Tumblr where, through Google Analytics, I saw a much lower number than that as my readership). And even though all 12,600 aren't reading my posts on a given day, the fact that they've all self-identified as following me makes me feel like I'm writing for a bigger audience.

(Side note: I still share all posts from here to my other social channels, so I haven't tried to restrict who can read my posts during this experiement.)

2. Comments, reactions, and interaction.
Here's where Google+ takes the digital cake. On Tumblr, I've historically averaged a paltry 1 comment or reaction per post. During my G+ experiment, I've averaged just over 4.5 comments or reactions. Both places have a section for leaving remarks and buttons for showing your approval (+1 button here, and the Like button from Disqus, my comments plug-in on Tumblr).

(Side note: What do you think digital cake would taste like? I'm guessing battery acid. Let's not continue that analogy...)

3. More thoughtful posting "strategy."
This was an unexpected byproduct of the experiment. While I write mostly for the enjoyment, I do like to understand when I get most readership. I won't necessarily schedule and plan out every last post, but Google+ has allowed me to understand the best times to get conversation going. (Full disclosure, in Eastern Standard Time i.e. Boston's time zone: mornings are great, afternoon and evenings suck, and night time is good).

If this is halftime, then Google+ has a big lead and something terrible would need to go wrong for me to stop posting here more regularly.
Shared publiclyView activity