I woke up one morning a few weeks ago quite unhappy with all of my websites. They look reasonably good.  They mostly have good traffic (not great, but good).  The ones I am pressing the RSS subscription on seem to have good subscribe rates.

But I’m not happy with the site conversion.  Or maybe it is that I’m not happy with the conversion tracking.  I’m not happy with the engagement.  Or maybe it is that I’m not happy with the engagement I can see.  I know that I’m not happy with the visuals… and some of the widgets/plug-ins/features…

Mostly, what it comes down to is that I’m not happy with my overall strategy. There isn’t one.  At no point did I sit down and make a plan.  It has been patchwork… and it doesn’t seem to match.  That needs to change…

Over the last few months I have managed to build a lot of great pieces.  WordPress, Joomla, Posterous, Tumblr, Flickr, FaceBook, Twitter and other services/sites and networks are all great… individually.  I’m not saying that I like all of the pieces I’ve made… just that the pieces have a lot of performance capability.  In a couple of cases, I may tap some experts on particular platforms.

I’m interested to see where everything will go…  I haven’t made the plan yet.

And that is where the next step comes in…


En Vogue | Free Your Mind

I’ll be using an open source program called FreeMind to lay out my ideas for website strategy.  I have used it to put together some presentations about various subjects.  It let’s me brainstorm ideas, and then organize them into something more cohesive.  In effect, it is a ‘radial outline’.  We all remember outlining things in school.  Outlining was a great tool for organizing content, but it was very linear.

The MindMap allows that outline to become a hub and spoke.  And then the ideas on the spokes can become new hubs.  This means that it becomes very easy to see which ideas have the most connection to others…  Unlike a linear outline, the MindMap allows ideas to connect to other ideas, rather than just be a subset of one thought.

But there is another step…


3run – Free Your Mind

And it always involves faith.  The faith that it can be done… that I can do it (or find the right source to do it).  The faith that it will work (or that it can be tweaked to work).  Of course, the faith will be subject to measurement (analytics) and modification…  But I will be ready to step into it… into the void of the unknown.

I am in the process of MindMapping my website strategy.  I am also analyzing tools and techniques.  As the strategy emerges, I know that there will be some pain and a learning curve… sometimes it may get pretty steep.

But this is where my business comes from.

from Lane’s Active Rain blog

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