I wrote yesterday about the rather funny British Milk Council spoof account that attracted a huge amount of attention due to a fake conflict between an imaginary social media manager and management:

The fact is, this is and always has been a spoof account. As is clear from my post, as I was writing about the blow-up, I began to realise this fact. Judging by a high-volume of tweets, a lot of people were taken in by this and thought it was genuine. I like to provide some commentary on brand goings-on within social media (also frank views on terrible social media practice, see blog here) and that’s what I did with this case.

When the article was finished, I threw it out there on Twitter. I knew it would get some level of attention as the buzz was growing. What I didn’t expect was the level of traffic that came its way (and continues to!). I thought that the marketers among you may be interested in some stats around that, but I’ve also got some insight into who was reading it. Here we go…

General user spike

As you can see, my site attracts modest levels of users. It’s ok, I can handle that, it serves its purpose. Average users per day is around 40. Yesterday, that jumped a little, as you can see! A flood of people to the site. Dopamine levels for yours truly through the roof. Shallow, I know.

User behaviour related to the post

The average time on page is nice, that’s plenty of time to have read the post. What about after that though? What happened? Well, 93% of them bounced. Boing. Is this valuable traffic/attention? Are people finding out more about me and my business after reading this? No.

Of those that didn’t bounce, the majority of them read my post from the previous day regarding the Wetherspoons social media withdrawal. That was main-stream news, yet my post only attracted 127 views. Shows the power of controversy. Even if fake. Of course there are other factors in my Milk post getting that level of attention, but interesting none the less.

Real-time spike

I was watching Google real-time and enjoying the view. There was huge spike from twitter, related to a popular user tweeting it and subsequent retweets. That tweet actually led to the owner of the spoof account (@hrtbps) getting involved with my article:

Sorry, back to the real-time spike:

That was really exciting. In a gloriously geeky way.

Where did the traffic come from?

Nothing surprising here, social is going to rule the roost. Twitter represents 95% of it, 4% from LinkedIn, 1% Facebook and 0.12% from Yammer. Remember that?! The Direct traffic probably has a nice slice of social in there too.

The minimal SEO in me was keen to see if the post started to attract search traffic, as you can see, it was minimal on the day of posting (expected). Today, 33% of the views of the post have stemmed from search. It’s sitting in 4th in the old-school results. Social accounts for 49%.

Who was interested in the post?

I run Leadfeeder on my site, it tries its best to identify companies that have visited your site and tells you what they do when they are there. The thing that struck me most was the traffic from media sources including:

  • BBC
  • Reuters
  • The Guardian
  • Johnstone Press

And a bunch of other smaller outlets. Were they trying to fact-check? Make sure they weren’t about to look rather silly? Who knows, but it’s pretty cool to have had them on my site.

Some pretty big brands were also having a peek, including Ikea, EE, Universal Pictures and Fed Ex.

Global baby!

This wasn’t just a UK thang. It was pan-European, South American, SE Asia, African and everywhere else in-between. I can’t believe ‘Jason’s’ harsh tongue reached that far, and that’s only via my article.

Yup, all nice data, well done. What has it done for you Mike?

Nothing much. 32 new newsletter sign-ups. A load of new people on my site. Will they work with me in the future? Doubtful, but you never know. Ultimately, I love writing about social media, I’ve not done enough of it recently (been more focussed on video, watch ’em here) and when people read my stuff, it feels great. A good enough reason, right?

Header image via Shutterstock

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