I have been overwhelmed with the amount of traffic I've gotten to the site lately for my article "The Ultimate Guide to Solve iOS Battery Drain." Before a few days ago I was averaging double digits per day.
In the past 72 hours, I've been linked by the following sites (plus a few more), generating tens of thousands of hits per hour: 1
The ball started rolling when The Loop linked me (who heard about it through Rafiq Sarlie) on Sunday, April 6th. The views started rolling in steadily until the next day when several others linked me. Then traffic exploded.
The past three days have been a wild ride. I've been giddy like a young schoolboy 2 most of the time, bouncing around all day and unable to sit still. I know I should turn off my Tweetbot notifications, but it's too fun right now.
I wanted to say thanks to every person who shared my article over the past few days. It may seem small to you to retweet, share, or like my article, but you truly have changed my life. Thank you for all of your emails, texts, and tweets. I read every single one of them, and many of them were very positive, helpful, and meaningful to me.
Several of my friends have asked me, "How are you going to follow up after that post? You better write something epic." I've felt that pressure myself. However, I think the worst thing I could try to do is "replicate" some "formula" to get more hits.
If I tried to make every post I write go "viral" 3, I wouldn't want to read my own blog. There are a lot of disgusting, pageview-grubbing publications that settle for cheap tricks 4, trendy titles 5, and borderline plagiarism 6 to grab the eyeballs. I never really payed attention to slimy publications before, but the past few days I've been forced to — several of them contacted me asking for the "privilege" to have my posts "syndicated" on their site — a way for them to get my article for free (i.e. Not paying me for it) for the great "opportunity of exposure". Don't worry, I turned them down.
Special thanks to Shawn Blanc, Marco Arment, and Rick Stawarz for steering me in the right direction. I admit it was tempting at first, because it seems like such a big opportunity and I didn't understand what giving my material to them would do — drive traffic to their site and very little to mine.
In that same vein, however, you may have noticed the ad at the top of the page. Don't worry, I'm not going to add fifty flashing, blinking banners for dating services or online poker sites — that's the only ad I will ever add to this site. I'm happy to be a new member of the Fusion Ad Network. They approached me during the craziness and have been fantastic to work with.
Also, I want to give a huge thanks to Sid O'Neill over at Crate of Penguins for helping me implement my Fusion ad. I messaged him in a panic and he took a significant amount of his own time to get in and fix it for me. He wouldn't let me pay him for the help, so instead I'm asking you to go read his site, and if you like his stuff, consider supporting his work.
Ok, so one of my posts got popular, but what now? That is what has been burning on my mind during all this is — how do I continue from here?
I started this blog because I like to write things that help others.
In my mind, my blog was going to be a small landing page where I could reference some helpful ideas that may benefit my friends and family, as well as a place for me to build my writing skills and get some words out of my head.
But now, a significant number of people have jumped on board. Will they all fit on my rickety dinghy of a blog? How do I steer this thing? Will it hold water?
My plan for Overthought.org is to keep doing what I was doing before: write about things that I care about, are interesting to me, and will possibly help others. In reality, one blog post getting enormous traffic doesn't change anything for me.
Yes, I got linked by some big sites, but that doesn't somehow make me a better writer — I'm still the same exact person I was before all of this happened. And I'm not going to let this change me. 7
It makes me so incredibly happy that the world is reading my iOS Battery Life Guide because it is something I am very passionate about. The fact that I could write something to help and benefit so many people is very fulfilling.
My immediate focus right now is getting the article translated into as many languages as possible: I really believe that everyone with an iOS device should read, or at least be able to read, my article. There are so many terrible misconceptions about iOS battery life that I am intent on dismantling.
So far I have Italian, Russian, German, Spanish, Catalan, and others in the works, and I've already posted the Korean and French versions. Some amazing people have been volunteering to translate for free — I am blown away by their generosity. Thanks to everyone who has stepped up to help with the translation process.
Multiple readers have emailed me with their own specific situations of poor battery life, asking for my help trying to figure it out. I am torn — the technician in me wants to help every single person, but there just isn't enough time in the day.
So, if you are still having battery life issues after reading my article, I graciously refer you to your nearest Apple Store. My article covers roughly 95% of the most common issues, but your issue could be the 5% of an individual edge case that needs to be looked at by a good technician 8. If you are not near an Apple Store, Apple has a site that lists Apple Authorized Service Providers in your area.
If you live in Birmingham, Alabama (or soon to be in the Minneapolis area), you could also book an appointment with the Macinstructor, an Apple training and support business started by my good friend, Rick Stawarz.
If you check all of those resources and you still can't find anyone to help you, have no fear — I am the process of coming up with a solution for you. Hang tight. I'm working to get you some help.
Since a lot of people are new to the site, I also wanted to introduce all of you to a few articles I've written over the past year in case you missed them. All of these are available in my Archive or my Featured page.
Here you go:
- How to Use the iPhone Overseas — First posts are sort of like first loves: they may not have been the best, but they will always be special to you. I wrote my first article after traveling to Italy to visit my wife's father and grandparents for three weeks. This is what inspired me to start the blog altogether.
- Background App Refresh in Layman's Terms — Self-explanatory.
- How to Stop Your iPhone from Vibrating Randomly — Also self-explanatory.
- Sleaze Brain — An article about the opposite of the "Lizard Brain", a term famously coined by Merlin Mann.
- The Outsider and the Creed — This, in my mind, was the turning point for me as a writer: it's where I wrote down and declared who I want to be as a writer. It was published six days ago, two days before my post got linked.
Thanks again to everyone who has stopped by the site. I'm extremely grateful for your amazing words, feedback, and just general awesomeness. I want you to know that I see you as more than just a pair of "eyeballs". I look forward to building a relationship together as Overthought.org grows.
If you have benefited from any of my work, and you want to show some love, here are some things you can do:
- Share my articles.
- Follow me, personally, on Twitter @scottyloveless or App.net @scottyloveless.
- Follow the blog account on Twitter @overthoughtorg.
- Like the new Facebook group.
- Sign up for my email newsletter in the form at the bottom of the page to receive free updates directly to your inbox.
- Donate a few bucks or become a patron. My dream is to write full-time, but I need the equivalent of a full-time income to do that. Every little bit helps :)
- Kudos to Squarespace, my host, for not crashing at all (that I know of). ↩
- ;) ↩
- Does that word even have value anymore? ↩
- "Cat Interrupts Robbery — What Happens Next Will Surprise You..." ↩
- 82 Reasons Cats Are More Hipster Than Dogs ↩
- Big publications ripping off other people. ↩
- Or give me what I call "Sleaze Brain" ↩
- Good technicians don't always work for Apple, I'm sorry to say. Many of them will tell you to quit your apps and turn everything off. Sigh. Baby steps, people. ↩