This post will be a little more free-flowing. I thought I would have some steps that you could follow, but it was hard for me to boil down my experience into some simple steps. I encouage you to check out Emergiblog and Tundra Medicine for some other feedback on GR hosting.
I was on call the weekend before my GR posting. So, my schedule was just crazy. As I've said before, my job gets in the way of my blogging. I tried to keep ahead of things by reading submissions as they came in. Sunday was kind of nuts because it was a busy day on call. And, Sunday night after the deadline, there were some people still submitting. That's when I came out with my submission closed posting on Monday which some people remarked as a little moody.
I spent the entire day Monday trying to stay awake and make my final edits on the GR post. I was switching posts from the bottom section to the middle section, from the middle section to the top section, and all combinations in between.
The GR post went live at 6:30am and I waited. To further punish myself, I put up two poll questions to seek feedback on the GR layout and on the quality of GR. I had no idea what the reaction would be to the "link dump" at the end of my post.
At 6:30am, my site meter read 100 total visitors for the day. For the first few hours, it was reading between 20-30 per hour. Then at 9am, it spiked up to 52 visits in an hour. The next few hours, it was between 40-50 visitors per hour. Then at 2pm, the number read 72 visitors the prior hour. A few more hours went by, and then at 5pm, here's what the sitemeter read:
Yes, that's right 183 people saw the GR post in the last hour. Plus, in seeing more data, there were 85 people on my site at the same time! Thinking about this is just incredible.
Then, I was wondering if I hit 1000 visitors in one day. This occurred just before 8pm. Yay! The final question I had on that Tuesday was how many total visitors? When all was said and done - just over 1,300 visitors!
I had no idea what Wednesday would bring. I thought things would cool off a bit, especially because it was the day before Thanksgiving in the US - usually a huge travel day - and not expecting too much blog traffic. Then, at 10am, I saw this from site meter:
Little did I know that at the end of that day, I would have just below 1,400 visitors - quite a shock to me. Then, reality set in and on Thanksgiving day (Thursday), I only had 600 visitors.
Looking back, this was a memorable experience for me. People have asked me how much time out of my day did it take to put everything together. Hmmmmm. That's a tough one. People have estimated about 20 hours total during GR week, I guess that sounds right. Knowing me, I probably spent more time than that. I hope I get the opportunity to host again - although maybe not very soon. HA!
Finally, here are the poll results:
What did you think of Grand Rounds 3.09?
- One of the best: 38%
- Great: 51%
- Ok: 8%
- Below Average: 0%
- Awful: 3%
- Yes: 94%
- No: 6%