Today marks the 200th issue of InSight, my weekly e-zine. It's also the 4th anniversary of the first issue of InSight which means of have been blogging for four years.
Apart from a brief break over Christmas/New Year,each year, InSight has been emailed out to subscribers every Wednesday morning (or Tuesday afternoon/evening for North American and European subscribers) since it was first published on 26 September 2007.
From my recollection, at that time there were precisely zero bloggers in Australia and New Zealand who wrote regular material specifically for the recruitment agency market. It's great to see that there are now around 20 fellow bloggers (although still far too few I reckon).
My blog kicked off in early 2008. The lead article from each week's InSight is posted to this blog between 24 and 48 hours in advance of InSight's distribution. If relevant, the InSight editorial is also posted to this blog.
In all that time I have never undertaken a reader survey of InSight. Certainly comments posted to my blog and emails containing feedback, have both been regular and plentiful but what about the views of the silent minority?
Well, I've decided to find out. Working with popular survey tool peoplepulse, I've constructed a questionnaire to help me understand who you (my readers) are, what you really think of my blog and how you use the information I provide to you.
My way of saying ‘thank you' for taking 10 minutes of your time to complete the 21 question survey is to give you a free Ross Clennett eBook package. This package contains all six of my compilation eBooks (Best of InSight Volumes 1, 2 & 3 and Best of Ross Recommends Volumes 1, 2 & 3).
Once you complete the survey, you will automatically receive an email with a link to download my 6 eBooks package.
But I cannot let this anniversary occasion pass without acknowledging my webmaster, editor, backroom engine, technical genius, sounding board, reality checker and friend, Liana Duric.
Liana is my Operations Assistant (official titles never do people justice, do they?) who has worked with me since the inception of RossClennett.com (4 years) and has lovingly (ok, maybe not so lovingly at times) edited, constructed and published every single one of the 200 issues. It might be a cliché to say it, but I could not have got to 200 issues without her.
Recapping 4 years and 200 InSight issues: The 10 most popular articles
This is an extract from the Introduction of Best of InSight Volume 1, January 2009:
In June 2007, when I made the decision to launch RossClennett.com one of the first features of the site I committed to producing was an email newsletter. When asked by my business coach how frequently this ezine would be published, I boldly declared ‘weekly!'
As my September launch date drew closer, and at the same time I was receiving an ever-increasing numberof bookings for my key note speaking, workshops and coaching services, I started to wonder whether I had been a little hasty in committing to generating between 800 and 1500 words of new content each week. I decided to work from home each Monday, and inbetween the sleeps of my new-born son, I would furiously write Insight.
Well, it worked!
Now that InSight is well into its second year, it is still written at home each Monday, ready for publication on the Wednesday of the same week.
I aim to write about issues of relevance to my target audience (recruitment agency owners and recruiters) and to write about these issues in a way that educates, motivates, entertains and enlightens the reader.
Four years on, my writing schedule remains the same. My (then baby) son, James, is now four years old but we still have Mondays together at home although with James now not requiring a daytime sleep, I need to be polishing InSight on Monday, not starting it from scratch.
My reading audience, by country, is as follows:
- Australia 57%
- USA 18%
- UK 7%
- New Zealand 7%
- France 2%
- Other 9%
Here, in order, are my most popular articles of the past four years and a few comments from me about the origins of each article.
originally published in May 2011
Comment: Ben, a frustrated recruiter in Perth sent me an email about clients claiming candidates he'd referred were already ‘on our database' and as a result a placement fee was not going to be paid.
My email back to him started to get so detailed I thought ‘there's a blog post in this'. I wrote the post and was so inundated with responses that I had to write a follow up post the next week.
Within a week of the original blog post coming out, it was my most viewed post and it's stayed that way.
2. Now Hiring 32 Professionals: All Agencies welcome to submit candidates* and Atlassian32 - the story (and lessons) so far and Atlassian Recruitment: November 2010 update
originally published in August 2009, February 2010 and November 2010, respectively
Comment: Through my Twitter feed, I found out about the recruitment tactics of a company I'd never heard of before. After visiting the Atlassian website, I recognised there was a story in an Australian company recruiting for themselves in a completely different way.
The agency responses to my article were emphatic and immediate. Forty comments later the Australian Financial Review picked up the story and printed some of my blog comments in their Upstarts throw out recruiters' rule book feature article published on 13 October, 2009.
originally published in February 2011
Comment: Lesley Horsburgh, editor of Recruitment Extra asked me to write an article about the future of recruitment. I thought the easiest way to tackle the subject was to point to all those people and companies who were worth watching. This was the article that resulted.
originally published in February 2009
Comment: This article has been a real sleeper. Looking at my Google analytics it appears that my chosen title turns out to be a popular combination of words used in online keyword searching. Lucky me.
originally published in May 2007
Comment: I wrote this at the request of Jo Knox, editor of Recruiter Daily. This was the second of my articles that RD published, four months before InSight appeared for the first time in your inbox. When I finally got around to giving it a run in InSight earlier this year, it immediately proved to be very popular.
originally published in February 2011
Comment: LinkedIn's official pre-IPO documentation contained a bonanza of juicy information about their intentions for conquering the recruitment agency market. It made for great copy and clearly readers thought so too.
originally published in October 2008
Comment: Articles on the use of databases by recruiters don't appear to be very common. Canberra based, Recruitment Systems, re-published the article on their website which no doubt helped it gain traction.
originally published in May 2008
Comment: After a few mis-steps recently, the original celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay, is a lot less popular these days in Australia. However three years ago he was all the rage with Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmare's riding high in the rating for Channel 9.
This article has been my most popular article for readers outside the recruitment sector. The Australian Institute of Management (AIM) requested re-publishing rights for their website and newsletter and Victorian tertiary institution, RMIT, requested permission to include the article in the course reading material for the RMIT Staff Leadership Program in 2011.
originally published in September 2008
Comment: Surfing music sites on the internet one night (as I occasionally do) I came across a great story about how US rock band, Journey, had recruited their new lead singer from the Philippines via YouTube.
Being a music fan, I immediately thought of the analogy I could make in a blog post. I submitted it to the #1 US recruitment article website, ERE.net, and they re-published it the next month under the title What a Journey!
originally published in May 2008
Comment: This post about how recruiters manage to waste time was one of the most popular articles in Recruiter Daily in 2008. Jo Knox re-wrote my original article and published it under the title 12 ways you should stop wasting your time.