2016 in review – the best of this year

Since the end of the year is drawing closer and closer, I think it’s time for a year-in-review looking-back post.

First of all I would like to wish you, all my readers, the very best in the new year and thank you for reading and commenting.

Now I’d like to present the highlights of this blog for 2016. I published 57 posts, which is 20 fewer than last year… I don’t think this is what I planned, as far as I can remember, I wanted to write more, not less. Well, it happened this way. Maybe next year.

The most popular posts (except for Homepage/Archives) were:

  1. The quickest Christmas cookies ever – a’la Raffaello

  2. Abandoned shoes and some more weird stuff in Stoke on Trent

  3. Weekly Photo Challenge: Mirror

  4. Vilnius – a quirky and beautiful city

  5. Oatcake Day 2016

  6. Tasting… Vilnius or About Lithuanian food and drinks
  7. Tasting Czech Republic – marinated camembert
  8. H2O – Weekly Photo Challenge
  9. Recent bread baking: garlic and herb bread, oat bread
  10. Virgin Matchacolada (Summer of Matcha by EatCleanTea)

Feel free to browse through them!

According to the statistics, most of you (readers) came again from the United Kingdom, the United States and the Czech Republic, which is not a surprise since one country is where I’m from and one is where I live now.

This year I also got a brand new logo for the blog and associated social media pages.

Non-bloggers can skip the following three paragraphs, I donˈt want to bore you, it is about blogging strategies.

What was new for me this year in the blogging world? I tried to dip into marketing my blog online. Since I already have a related FB page for this blog, I wanted to utilize it and so I joined some FB groups for bloggers. Some I liked, some I did not. For example, I can recommend Blogging Boost, where people ask for/provide advice about blogging. But I also joined some groups where the main purpose of contributions was asking for “like for like” or “share for share”. I don´t like this strategy, it seems fake to me, however it might work to get a lot of following quickly. I guess I just prefer the old-fashioned organic growth. I tried something else, though. Since I wanted my posts to be visible for more people than my friends and the followers of my blog FB page, I tried creating ads with FB. This way, I got my posts to more potential readers, but the growth was not artificial.

I also created an Instagram account since Iˈve read it could be a huge help in drawing audience. This is not really working for me so far. No wonder, I uploaded just a few pictures and I guess thatˈs not gonna work wonders. I should focus on that next year.

Another new approach I tried is connecting with brands. I tried to register at various pages and again, some of them were more useful than others. I did two reviews of a product that I received for free, coincidentally it was matcha powder in both cases. I wish I could find some more and more varied opportunities next year, because it also helped me to get some more views.

What about 2017? Iˈve got a new regular series in mind about street art, stay tuned! Also, I should really try to push this Instagram thing before another super-trendy platform appears. And obviously, I will try to write more. I have so much material and ideas, but the time, the time… Well, fingers crossed.

Thanks again for reading, commenting and following!

Kristýna from Tasting the World

Update: this is my contribution to Retrospective by Daily Post

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17 Comments Add yours

  1. Sam says:

    Great to read this post. I liked the camembert and will try it in Prague and/or do it in Poland after I come back.
    I didn’t work too much on my marketing strategy nor on my twitter/Instagram accounts. So yeah, I know your pain. And I still tell myself, that I will try to improve it. I’m crossing fingers for both your and my success in social media. 😉

    Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. kuminkueche says:

    Great post, thanks for sharing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for sharing this informative post! I enjoyed reading about the details of your online marketing strategy 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jona says:

    I couldn’t resist commenting. Exceptionally well written!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a fun year full of growth you’ve had!

    I am currently re-assessing my online marketing strategy in an effort to grow my traffic organically. I will implement my (still developing) plan for three months or so and then decide whether or not it’s a fit. Oe thing I *have learned though is that when I comment on other Instagram accounts that are in my niche, I gain followers…and at a rate of 25-50%. So, if I comment on 10 photos in a day, I can see anywhere from 2-5 new followers. I think this is because other people who actually comment like to click around 🙂

    Anyway, good luck with 2017! Wishing you a bountiful year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Melissa. Thanks for your comment. Your strategy sounds great, that really is an amazing rate – I must try that as well 🙂 I now try to update one photo a day from my archives with some hashtags. So I´ll see if it brings something.

      Edit: I now try to update upload one photo a day from my archives with some hashtags. And I meant uploading it to Instagram.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s a fun idea too! Do you edit the post or put the hashtags in the comments?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Which post do you mean? For Instagram, I try to enter hashtags straight when uploading the photo. Of course, today I just wrote a description and hit send. Then I added some hashtags in a comment. Does it still count?

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Yes, for Instagram 🙂 If you’re pushing your Insta pic to Facebook (or other social media platform) it’s better to not have all your (10-15) hashtags in with the description. So, putting the hashtags in a comment on Instagram is what’s recommended and yes, they still count! 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

        3. Amazing, thanks!

          Liked by 1 person

  6. afarawayhome says:

    I agree, thank you for sharing your experiences increasing your following. How did the facebook ad thing work out?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. After publishing each ad I notice higher page views and usually a few new followers as well. But it is individuals, definitely not tens. So I will try it a few more times with some tweaks and I’ll see. It’s not a massive difference in following. Just the exposure is bigger. On the other hand, it might be because I’m quite reluctant to spend too much money on it. I think my total bill for December was under 15 GBP 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. afarawayhome says:

        That’s what I thought, sometimes people make it sound like you can magically introduce thousands more people to your blog but I don’t think that’s the case. Then again, maybe with a few tweaks… 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Mara Eastern says:

    It was so interesting to read about the details of your online marketing strategy (for lack of a better/nicer word…). Give Instagram some time and use #foodie hashtags, you might be surprised how much organic, unartificial audience you could get there. And thanks for blogging and being around!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! 🙂 I always thought that if I use a very general hashtags like #foodie it will get lost in the millions of other posts with the same hashtag… I will try it though, there’s nothing to lose 🙂

      Like

      1. Mara Eastern says:

        Hm, perhaps a mix of general and more specific tags would help? In any case, you have one new follower in me 😉

        Liked by 1 person

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