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Nonstop at 1 month: So how are we doing?

Nonstop turns a month old. Here’s where we’re at


Posted September 24, 2010 by Diane Seo

Yesterday, Nonstop Honolulu celebrated its 1-month-old birthday. We launched at 12:01 a.m. on Aug. 23, letting loose the site we had been conceptualizing and building for months. I don’t think any of us can believe we’ve been around for only 32 days, since Nonstop is already ingrained in our identities. I know I don’t speak for myself when I say that Nonstop is one of the first things I think about when I wake up, and rarely leaves my mind.

So how are we doing? Really good. Actually better than I expected.

With a website, one of the main ways to measure success is through traffic. It may have been conservative, but I estimated our first month of traffic to be around 500,000 page views. Of course, we were from Metromix, where monthly page views routinely reached 3 million and beyond. But we were no longer attached to a major media entity like The Honolulu Advertiser, and we were introducing a new name and new site. Like with all websites — Metromix included — building an online audience takes time.

But through the relentless and effective social media efforts of our team, we got the word out about Nonstop in a big way. From Aug. 23 through Sept. 23, we drew nearly 1.5 million page views and more than 21,000 visitors. The average time spent on our site was more than six minutes, which is really high.

For an independent start-up site with no corporate backing or major media partnership yet in place, these are awesome metrics. We definitely want to grow our audience, and there are plans and partnerships in the works to help us do this. But I’ve been amazed that Nonstop has been embraced the way it has, riding largely on our Twitter and Facebook networks.

It’s an exciting time to be working in media, especially as an independent. It would have been unheard of a decade ago, or even five years ago, to think that a group of journalists without substantial financial backing could come together and launch an entertainment site that would have any traction. It would have been impossible to get a media product off the ground without a big marketing/advertising/PR budget.

But social networking has progressed to a point where a site like ours can lure an audience via Twitter and Facebook. I am not a social networking guru; in fact, I’m still learning how to put myself out there. But the people on our Nonstop team — John Garcia, Melissa Chang, Catherine Toth, Ed Morita, Tracy Chan and Mari Taketa — are among the most active social networkers in Honolulu, and they’ve been incredibly effective at tapping into their networks to bring people to the site.

Combining our personal networks, we have 15,784 Twitter followers and 7,573 Facebook friends. Sure, we have a lot of the same friends and followers, but still these are substantial numbers for a relatively small group here in Honolulu. In addition, many of our Twitter and Facebook friends have been retweeting and “liking” our posts, growing our network even further.

The might of our social networking relationships was evident at our launch party last week. Again, we had no budget to advertise in a traditional way or even to print and post fliers, but we were blown away that more than 300 people came to our pau hana gathering to wish us well. The crowd was very diverse, but the vast majority were part of Honolulu’s social networking stronghold. It was exciting to see that our site could actually be the catalyst for bringing together such a dynamic group. We’re motivated now to throw regular events and to build this community even further.

So all in all, it’s been a good start for us. We’re still trying to figure things out content wise. We’re still on a mission to expand our audience. And we have many improvements/enhancements we hope to introduce soon. But we realize we have an opportunity to build something big, and we’re gonna push forward as hard as we can into that space.

My recent blog posts
The best gift ever
Covering the ‘Hawaii Five-O’ premiere
We’ve got two new bloggers
What if people actually work together…
Why ‘Nonstop?’
A look behind Nonstop

Comments


  1. dbjack
    Posted September 23, 2010 at 9:24 pm

    You guys are filling the need I have to be home on Oahu. Been following some of you folks for a while now so glad you didn’t disappear. The quality and variety is good.

  2. Posted September 23, 2010 at 11:10 pm

    @dbjack Mahalo for your support! If you have any feedback or ideas, we’d love to hear from you!

  3. Posted September 23, 2010 at 11:46 pm

    I have to say this is an awesome platform for some of Hawaii’s most passionate people to do what they love minus the corporate bovine droppings.

    I have know most on the people on the staff for a while and recently meet Mari and Diane so now i know everybody and it feels good to have my friends do something this big yet still keep is real and so close to the ground.

    JG and I have been friends for too long to mention since I’m supposed to be 21 still :) so I’m especially proud of John.

    I know I speak for a lot of folks when I say we look forward to what will grow out of NSH! No for that reason we need a NSH mixer at least once a month :) Let’s blame it on social and marketing reasons rather than the Alcohol.

    Mahalo NSH

  4. DianeSeo
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 2:12 am

    @docrock hey thanks for the comment. Yeah, we’ve got all kinds of ideas of how to grow NSH. The one area that we all know is where we need to push is turning NSH into a true online community with the Twitter and Facebook communities and beyond. Just by commenting, you’re helping us do that. And yes, more parties are in the works.

  5. DianeSeo
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 2:13 am

    @dbjack thank you. What kinds of stuff are you most interested on Nonstop, the blogs, the pics? Curious who’s reading what and why?

  6. dbjack
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 2:13 am

    @johngarcia What’s up John? Always got plenty of ideas, just not sure if any of them are good :) It is a blessing you guys are doing this. One thing is for certain, I can’t be the only homesick kama’aina parked here on the mainland. We all miss the food, the sunshine, sailing, swimming , and surfing, but mostly we miss our extended family. Got so many sisters, brothers, aunties, and uncles back there that treated me so well. The self proclaimed pineapples of Kawaiaha’o Church, member there, and the truly excellent choir. There is no way to describe just how strong the pull is to come home, just waiting for the right time. Once Hawaii is in your blood and once you have an extended family, big ohana there, it hurts not to be there. and this is something most haole’s never get. sad though, it is one of the most powerful forces in the universe.

  7. dbjack
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 2:21 am

    @DianeSeo Of course I love the photos, know exactly where you are when you take them. The pics give you a sense of connection. I’d love it if you dropped in on Kawaiaha’o Church for me. It is my home church, been a member since 2002. Also would love more stories about Kaneohe Bay, Kokokahi Sailing Club is awesome, used to sail out of there. We’d all sync up on the sand bar and play volleyball. I would go crazy happy if you found a way to be crew on a sailboat on the Friday night yacht races out of HYC in Ala Moana. A trip out to Valley of the Temples is alwasy nice. I managed the MBA Program at Chaminade for a while, neat campus with St. Louis there. And please please please send Cat to Haleiwa Joe’s kaneohe, my favorite place for Pupus. What else, would love it if you had a golf blog and had someone going from course to course… I’d volunteer. There are plenty. And f you wanted to do a business blog I could handle that one, teach entrepreneurship now at Elon university and know all kinds of business leaders in Hawaii from my BankOH and Chaminade days. Also got lots of friends at DA’s office. Got plenty more ideas. Did I mention I am pretty good with a camera??? Enough Already :) When I move back I will be bugging you guys for sure.

  8. Posted September 24, 2010 at 5:12 am

    You guys have done such a remarkable job! The site is fun & user-friendly. Don’t get me started on the people who are phenomenal and quite literally…nonstop. Content has been a mix of useful, interactive, fun, & versatile and I’m sure just a taste of what’s to come. And a lot of it turns into water cooler chat to ice breaker material to overhearing some stranger talk about a nonstop blog you just read…and chiming in. Wait, I don’t always chime in with strangers…but I do think it’s very cool to overhear!

    **stands** Hello, my name is Amber and I’ve been nonstop on nonstop for a month now. **sits**

  9. HImom808
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 5:56 am

    Phenomenon, that’s what NonStop is! It’s been amazing watching you from prelaunch forward. Incredible. The site, the tweets, it really feels nonstop, and like there’s something exciting going on here, well…uh, nonstop. The poll not long ago about when we check the site? That needed an option to check, what else, but… nonstop.

    AND you’re all so friendly, even to twitter noobs, and (ahem) people struggling with the sign in. =) Keep it up! Btw, I may have visited Metromix a time or two but it didn’t seem like a place for me–this? Completely the opposite. You’ve filled in a space from the local online moms world too.

  10. DianeSeo
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 11:40 am

    @HImom808 Wow, glad you came on board with Nonstop. Glad the site comes off friendly. I think with Metromix, we skewed more edgy, partly because that was more of the corporate brand. Think we’re attracting a different audience with Nonstop, which is pretty interesting.

  11. DianeSeo
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 11:42 am

    @sunshyne402 Thanks for the great feedback. Hope you keep commenting and coming to Nonstop. Which blogs are you reading most on the site?

  12. M
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    Hello Diane!
    You guys are doing an awesome job! Why to go!

  13. Annoddah_Dave
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    Dear Editor-in-Chief,
    Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this topic. While I am outside of your stated demographics (About Us), I try to keep up with the “edgy” like “small Japanese woman with wild hair flapping in her eyes”. As a business, your social networking will have to eventually morph into a more business model where relationships will yield action. Like a spider diagram of the connection between NSH and its readers/bloggers, certain key relationships will develop to where “power broker bloggers” as I call them will influence their network into action and other spin offs. You can see with the launch how certain bloggers say “I’ll be there” and it sets off a veritable party hardy group. This in turn will become your basis for achieving the ad bucks, and organizations will pay to be on your site. I don’t know how the metrics of relationship in networking can be captured for managerial decision making but it should not be a “catch as catch can” proposition. You have put out the bait, now it is getting close to setting the hook. This is where your leadership will need to come out as you embark on your vision.

  14. Braddah_Lance
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    Hau’oli La Hanau NonStop! The website looks fantastic and will only grow. How come no pidgin speaking bloggers?

    Wassup Wit Dat! ; ) lol

    BL

  15. Harrycovair
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 5:57 pm

    @Braddah_Lance We no speek pidgen. We speek “Bird”.

  16. Harrycovair
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    Hey Diane,

    Love the format of this online magazine (e-zine). True interaction between your readers and your staff.

    I don’t know how your writers come up with some of the topics they write about, like Cat’s non-fuud blogs or Ed’s cooking tips. It’s great to see responses from all the readers especially the ones who have inside knowledge of the topic being discussed.

    It can only get better from here, especially with everyone’s input.

  17. M
    Posted September 24, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    Way to go! not why. hahaha

  18. Posted September 24, 2010 at 11:10 pm

    @DianeSeo I religiously read Cat’s, Mari’s, & Melissa’s….because I’m a lover of food and relate to a lot of what they post. Though other blogs catch my eye by topic and I’ve found myself visiting Ed’s blog quite a bit. I also look forward to anything you write, always insightful, relatable, and honest. Looking forward to anyone to write something very techie….comparing or reviewing all the latest and greatest gizmos and gadgets — simply because I’m challenged in that regard. ;) But I know that doesn’t fall into eating, events, and nightlife.
    Keep up the great work!

  19. Posted September 24, 2010 at 11:14 pm

    @DianeSeo I religiously read Cat’s, Mari’s, & Melissa’s….because I’m a lover of food and relate to a lot of what they post. Though other blogs catch my eye by topic and I’ve found myself visiting Ed’s blog quite a bit. I also look forward to anything you write, always insightful, relatable, and honest. Looking forward to anyone to write something very techie….comparing or reviewing all the latest and greatest gizmos and gadgets — simply because I’m challenged in that regard. ;) But I know that doesn’t fall into eating, events, and nightlife.
    Keep up the great work!

  20. DianeSeo
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 1:36 am

    @Braddah_Lance Haha. Glad you found us. You blogging still?

  21. DianeSeo
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 1:36 am

    @M Why to go is okay too!

  22. DianeSeo
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 1:37 am

    @Annoddah_Dave Really interesting comments/observations. Believe me, I’ll be thinking about what you’re saying.

  23. Posted September 25, 2010 at 2:51 am

    @Braddah_Lance Yo Lance!

  24. Posted September 25, 2010 at 2:52 am

    @docrock Mahalo for your support, Doc! Means a lot!

  25. turkfontaine
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 3:31 am

    i can feel the energy. there’s depth of talent that was able to spring, fully formed from traditional forms of journalism and marketing into the ether. the kernel of what drew me to the site was the fact that i had been following most of you on TwTr, so when the site fired up i felt like a bunch of my friends had gotten together to throw a big party and start a new business. the personalities are evident and distinctive. there’s enough diversity of content to attract a wide audience. you all have been successful previously and there’s nothing i can see on the horizon that will prevent continued success. NONSTOP is ahead of the curve. like a Confederate soldier said, explaining how the rebels won an early battle: “we got there firstest with the mostest” and so have y’all.

  26. Posted September 25, 2010 at 3:36 am

    I’m not even in Hawaii (although it would be nice!), but I’d like to say that my opinion has some validity working for Livefyre and seeing everything you guys do.

    You guys have created tremendous buzz and traffic. The amount of content and comments that you all have swirling around is very impressive; one of the most active sites that I’ve seen on our network.

    You create a lot of content via your page and Twitter account, but you don’t oversaturate. You give enough to always have something new, but you’re not flooding the user causing information overload.

    There is definitely something good happening here and Livefyre is here to help with whatever you need…we’re pumped to be working so close with you all.

  27. nonstopmari
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 3:37 am

    @turkfontaine spkg for myself, in my entire life i’d never have remotely imagined i’d be compared to a confederate soldier. once again turk wins the award for most striking imagery in a comment!

  28. nonstopmari
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 3:47 am

    @JMattHicks whenever i’ve had a technical issue w/ the comment system, u guys have been on it in minutes. u really have our backs. livefyre is also nonstop!

  29. DianeSeo
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 9:51 am

    @JMattHicks Thanks for being so responsive to us. Looking forward to working with you guys and taking commenting to a whole new level.

  30. Braddah_Lance
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 9:53 am

    @harrycovair Bird? Wat kine dat? Myna?

  31. Braddah_Lance
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 9:58 am

    @DianeSeo I was there from near the beginning when Sim and Co. opened up with their magazine and there was a link to NonStop. I was dropping in here and there and even wanted to attend your guys’ launch party but already had plans.

    And sadly no, not blogging. Nobody asked. : ( Actually was almost about to on Hawaii News Now but “at the moment” only doing staff blogs.

    I’m open though. ; )

  32. Braddah_Lance
    Posted September 25, 2010 at 10:02 am

    @johngarcia Wassup there John! I heard you’re getting ready to take the plunge? : ) Congrats on that!

    My wife just gave birth last week – a month early – and I’m still without a job so it’ll be interesting how things go from here.

    You’re a very busy bee though aren’t you? I finally got a Mac G4 from the Advertiser sale but sadly no programs. : (

    Talk to you soon Braddah!

  33. Posted February 14, 2011 at 1:53 am

    @nonstopmari @nonstopmari Somehow, I JUST saw this…5 months later…and I must say, I’m embarrassed! But do we EVER appreciate the kind words! It’s hard to believe that FIVE MONTHS have gone by…crazy.

    You guys ROCK, keep doing what you’re doing!

About Diane Seo

Diane Seo, the editor and co-founder of Nonstop Honolulu, is the Digital Media director for Upspring Media. Prior, she served as managing producer of Metromix Honolulu; manager of The Honolulu Advertiser's TGIF section; Managing Director of New Media for the ATP, which runs men's professional tennis worldwide; a senior editor at Salon.com and a staff writer for the Los Angeles Times.

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