Network News: May 25 – June 1, 2012

In The Spotlight

Collaboration Keeps ’Em Coming

Since Chesapeake Energy has been making national headlines as of late, our StateImpact reporters in Texas, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma decided to join forces and craft an excellent backgrounder on the company. The collaboration paid off and has been drawing steady traffic to each of their sites ever since. Collaborations make us look gooood.

Data Score Results In A Big Scoop

Emilie Ritter-Saunders of StateImpact Idaho broke a great story this week. After a solar Emiliecompany announced layoffs, she looked back into a database she kept from a previous story and found that they had received state money for training just this year. “I was really excited I had this story before anyone else here — and it got the Statesman to also request the data and report the story the next day!”  The state’s most popular blog, hosted on the Spokesman-Review site, also did a post on her scoop. The takeaway? Building and keeping a data library can lead to some stellar reporting.

Heard On NPR Shows

Reader Faves

Most visited content on each site, in order of popularity:

What does that mean? Well, we took the top post from each of your states, according to traffic. We adjusted those figures to reflect each state’s population and then ordered the results.

      1. Oklahoma: Three Reasons Oklahoma’s Income Tax Cut Plan Failed
      2. Idaho: Idaho’s Transform Solar Received $1 Million In State Training Grants
      3. Pennsylvania: Is Pittsburgh’s Fracking Ban Hurting Business?
      4. Ohio: Best College Majors if You Want to Find a Job
      5. Indiana: Indianapolis Schools Chief: If The Budget’s Cut Further, Expect Pain In Classrooms
      6. New Hampshire: Why NH Factories Are Struggling to Fill Jobs
      7. Texas: Primary Results: Two Railroad Commission Races Headed For a Runoff
      8. Florida: Jeb Bush Taking Florida Education Ideas Nationwide

StateImpact Oklahoma‘s “Three Reasons Why Oklahoma’s Income Tax Cut Plan Failed” far outpaced any other story this week, proving once again that readers love their explainers.

New Vs. Returning Visitors

We had about 5,000 more first-timers last week when compared to one month ago, which is good. What is not so good is that the number of return visitors dwindled slightly. Remember Lynette’s challenge to double your pool of return readers? You should be able to keep track in your own analytics browsers and see what they are gravitating toward.

Returning visitors’ top five stories this week from across the network (also weighted according to population):

      1. Oklahoma: Three Reasons Oklahoma’s Income Tax Cut Plan Failed
      2. Pennsylvania: Is Pittsburgh’s Fracking Ban Hurting Business?
      3. Idaho: Idaho’s Transform Solar Received $1 Million In State Training Grants
      4. Pennsylvania: DEP Issues Statement on Methane Gas Migration
      5. Oklahoma: Chesapeake Energy: Everything You Need To Know About the World’s “Biggest Fracker”

The takeaway here? Policy pieces keep ‘em coming back. So, keep that up!

Traffic Sources

Google, NPR.org and social media drive a good portion of our traffic.

51%

33%

15%

1%

Search engines
Referral/
Social media
Direct
 
Campaigns

 

Top search terms:

  • Chesapeake Energy
  • Transform Solar
  • Best College Majors 2012
  • Logging
  • Summer Jobs for Teachers
Top referrers:

  • NPR.org: 39% (two stories ran in the home page “rotator”)
  • Facebook: 19%
  • Twitter: 5%

 

Includes people who type in the URL or use a bookmark. Also includes referrals from mobile apps (eg Facebook iPhone app). Bit.ly links (often in tweets) and email newsletters.

The takeaway? We all need to be using our social media tools more often and more wisely. ARGO has lots of tips on making social media work for you, including this one on Twitter strategy. Good stuff.

Around The Network

  • Lynette Clemetson visited StateImpact New Hampshire in Concord.
  • Kyle Stokes of StateImpact Indiana has won two PRINDI awards. Do we have other award winners out there? Let us know!

This week

  • Strategies for Sustainability: Collaborative Tools for Year Two and Beyond. Lynette Clemetson and Dianne Brace and Chris Howie of NPR Development talk with general managers and development officers.

Feedback

We hope all of this is helpful. Keep up the great work and let the StateImpact Editorial Team at NPR know about your successes and challenges so that we can all continue to learn from each other.

Chris Swope, Jessica Pupovac, Ken Rudin & Becky Lettenberger

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