Editorial: The Year in Reviews for 2014
2014 was a year of some seriously dramatic changes for the PiercingMetal brand and while I feel as though I say something similar each and every year to you loyal readers, it’s the absolute truth when it comes to this past years happenings. I’ll be using the Editorial Soapbox to go over the most dramatic ones and keep it as brief as possible. Here we go with this year’s “State Of The Site”.
The Relaunch: At long last PiercingMetal.com has been relaunched and instead of making a big ole announcement about it, I pulled the trigger while you were sleeping and blew away my nine and a half year old design and replaced it with a WordPress installation. As much as I loved my traditional presentation, it had gotten too big and too complex to deliver the simplest thing to you and needed to be moved to this widely used blogging tool. Cutting to the chase a functional theme was found and put in place, numerous utilities installed that give you super coolness and then the rebuilding process began on getting all of the original site content into this new format for your greater appreciation. Check out the changes below….
The Changes In Presentation: For just over nine years the website had been organizing the core Reviews into their proper filing under CD, DVD, Book and Concerts and while most of that is the same; the new format finds me swapping the titles on a couple of them and listing them now as Music Reviews and Video Reviews. Doing this allows me to not worry how to load into an old database the occasional LP or MP3 only release that I am asked to examine. Using “Video Reviews” as the heading allows for the Blu-ray and streaming only content that we find our readership purchasing more and more these days. Events and Book Reviews are also presented under the one larger heading and they are joined by the Concert Reviews which originally stood on its own as an option. It feels better to me as the creative and I think it’s been appreciated by the readers so far. Now you might be wondering about all the legacy content that had been done since our launch back in 2005.
The Legacy Reviews: As you read this over 50% of my legacy review articles have been transposed and loaded into the new WordPress format and this process will continue until we reach 100%. The reviews that are still waiting their turn on being re-introduced are easily found in the Legacy Reviews option on the menu bar. It’s bare bones for sure but still lets you see these older posts on the site until I can attend to them all. Now let’s talk about the side blog that has been in place for the past seven years, you might know it as “PiercingMetal Musings”.
The Demise Of The “PiercingMetal Musings” Blog: In case you haven’t heard this yet, “PiercingMetal Musings” aka “The Official Blog for PiercingMetal.com” no longer exists now that the site has changed. Now before you cry about this please know that I only mean that it no longer exists as a side thing to the PiercingMetal.com voice. You see, once the site transformed into a full on WordPress presentation, the decision was made to move all of the existing posts into the categories on the new site and divvy them up as they best apply in this model. That means that everything that you have previously enjoyed on the once side blog is now here in the new version of the site and should continue to bring you a smile as we look ahead on content ideas for 2015. Now for some quick topics that need to be addressed.
PiercingMetal Contests: This year was a fantastic one for the contests that we have been receiving as a brand. There were just under 50 different contests this past year for some truly incredible shows with highlights being HIM, Ghost, Amon Amarth and far too many others to reference here. Thanks to the wonderful providers of these giveaways over 300 fans saw a concert for free and that very simply rocks in my humble opinion. I look forward to continuing these giveaways as they are offered as 2015 gets underway.
The Social Networking: How PiercingMetal.com Uses Them:
Its without a doubt that these days you have to be a bit of a Social Networking Ninja in order to keep up on the whole gamut of “means to be seen” and most certainly schooled in how to have them help you to increase the visibility and traffic to your brand when it comes to these mediums. Let’s brief on the main ones I’m using to help you enjoy PiercingMetal.com all the more.
Facebook: Facebook remains the Big Kahuna nowadays in the Social Networking world and depending on who you talk to this is either a good or a bad thing. I’ve had the Official Page for PiercingMetal.com for a few years now but since Facebook continually changes the way that “unfunded” (or pages refusing to buy ads) are “seen” by the network, it has been a slow grower in terms of who likes it. It seems that a fan needs to not only “Like” a page but also “Follow” it as well in order to hopefully see anything. I’ve set up the WordPress to post to our Official Facebook as every new post goes online so I thank those fans who are behind us on this medium and I encourage them to keep sharing the page with their friends to inspire more new fans so they don’t miss out. It’s also the easiest way to speak to me indirectly or to pitch me about a new band that I might have missed out on. Unlike some of the other websites out there I do not use this page to rehash the press emails that we get each and every day and instead will keep on delivering you almost 100% original creativity. Now to Twitter.
Twitter: I’ve gotten much better at using Twitter over the last couple of years but still fall short in terms of when someone chooses to “speak to me” via the medium. I don’t mind shout outs at all, but if you have some kind of question it’s probably better to hit the mailbox of the Facebook Page listed above or even better use the old fashioned actual email address for PiercingMetal since I am sure to get those first and faster. Twitter has mostly been used to keep broadcasting my most immediate activities and to share some Instagram posts that I think you will like. Please consider following our account and adding the brand to your suggestions to friends on the whole “Follow Friday” practice.
Instagram: I am in love with the idea of Instagram and this is one of the main reasons that I am loading more images up onto the Official Facebook Page. Once I have a few pictures up there I can easily share them to this fun medium and tag it all up. My ID there is “PiercingMetalNYC” so give us a follow and come see what I have been posting. At the time of this editorial there are over 1000 photos online in our Official Instagram and much like the other postings I do in the Social circle, these photos are 100% pure originality and not someone else’s tour poster or used without permission photo.
YouTube: The official YouTube channel for PiercingMetal allows me to share some of the musical life that we wander into and the goal is to inspire you to check out the bands that we are featuring on the site in terms of review. There is some really amazing stuff out there and if one of our clips inspires you to hit a show then everyone wins. Like our Instagram, its ID is “PiercingMetalNYC” based on the preferred name being locked up from use. I’d like to expand the use of YouTube in 2015 if at all possible so let’s see what time allows me to do.
The common thing about all of these mediums is that they only succeed with your participation and while it’s been steady as she goes, there is always room for improvement. Keep on telling your Metal peeps about these accounts so they can be a part of the fun with us all and I will be sure to dole out invisible gold stars to our most outstanding broadcaster.
Statistically Speaking: I’m happy to report that traffic surpassed our numbers for 2013 by several percentage points and I will admit that I felt that the mid-year switch to WordPress was going to cost me numbers but instead it helped the brand out a lot more. You probably realize that WordPress searches differently on the Global Web and if you didn’t know this well now you do. We still use Alexa.com to get a general gauge on how we are doing on the web but be aware that this is like the ocean and swells dramatically from time to time. At last check the site was in the 400K area in terms of worldwide traffic. With millions and millions of websites out there this is not a bad thing at all.
The largest amount of readers come from the USA according to our actual server but the top 20 countries visiting PiercingMetal.com after the USA are as follows: China, Ukraine, France, Germany, Russian Federation, Netherlands, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Finland, Poland, Romania, Great Britain, Spain, Japan, Austria, Turkey, Sweden, Venezuela and Brazil.
Hail and Farewell To The Music & Entertainment Losses of 2014:
Let’s tip the hat to those losses from the entertainment industry this past year.
Wayne Static (Static X), Jack Bruce (Cream), Joe Cocker, Jimi Jamison (Survivor), Robin Williams (legendary comedian), Johnny Winter, Tommy Ramone, HR Giger, Dave Brockie/Oderus Urungus (GWAR), Joan Rivers.
The Plans For 2015:
Now that the redevelopment is underway the prime directive is to finish the legacy imports while at the same time keeping new and interesting stuff coming to your computer or mobile device screens. Each recoded article feels like a brick being added to the Metal infrastructure of our Command HQ. Closing up this year’s Editorial I just want to extend a word of thanks for your patronage. There are so many websites out there nowadays and with so many choices open to your clicking I am glad that you’ve chosen to spend a little time with us. I’ve said that the best is yet to come and now with the new design I am pretty firm in that. See you in 2015.