Robert Pattinson = no effect! Not here anyway.

Twilight - Edward
Image by songbirdsings via Flickr

A little while ago, I wrote a post about how our school library blog has seen an influx of traffic directly related to a post written about Robert Pattinson of Twilight fame. My theory at the time was that the title of the post must have drawn traffic and I was wondering how writing a post with his name in the title would effect my blog stats.

The day of posting saw a rise in stats, but that was because the post was picked up by stumbleupon. After that, no significant rise in stats could be directly related to that post. In the meantime, the Robert Pattinson effect has continued to generate consistantly high numbers to 2rak info 4 u.  I’m assuming that somehow the Library post has been picked up by search engines and consistant traffic is finding its way there.

Meanwhile, I wrote another post recently about Zac Efron and Leonard Whiting and the uncanny resemblance between the two. The numbers aren’t huge, but it’s interesting seeing in the stats the search terms people are using that lead them to this blog. It seems that there are a fair few people out there who have made the same connection. 

All very interesting really. Blogging is its own science, and I really don’t want to get to a stage whereby I’m dependent on the latest and greatest next big thing to generate traffic. It takes away somewhat from the intentions of this space really. I’d prefer that it gets read because people find the content interesting and useful. In saying that, I don’t relish the thought of the numbers drying up! Too much effort really to have that happen.

While I’m here, can I share with you a totally unrelated but nonetheless interesting thing that happened today. I love Prada perfume. It’s hugely expensive, but memorable. Nearly every time I wear it someone makes a comment about how nice it is. 

A staff member came into the library late last year and said ‘Patchouli oil!’ He could smell it and said it took him back to when he was 17 when all of the girls wore it. I told him I was wearing Prada perfume. He sniffed my wrist and said ‘That’s it- Patchouli oil!”.

Recently I was in my local bakery when the lady behind the counter said, “I can smell Patchouli oil.” I exclaimed, “That’s me- it’s Prada perfume.” 

I recounted this story to the staff member who’d made the connection in the first place today. He was wondering if the basis of Prada perfume was Patchouli oil. Of course, it got me searching. Within a minute we’d located sites that revealed that the basis of Prada perfume was, you guessed it, Patchouli oil.  His theory was that Prada was using the oil because women of my age and older( ! ) would be wanting to relive their youth. Interestingly, here’s the spin from Prada in their sales pitch in an ad;

Prada Perfume For Women is inspired by the past, that embodies the future. Prada Perfume For Women is a fragrance that intertwines memory, reality, and possibility. 

Pretty spot on with my colleague’s theory really.


What’s really interesting is just how fast you can access information now. A conversation leads to a search, that reveals within minutes the data we were speculating about. Think back to 10 years ago; just how long would it have taken me to source this information? Another thought to ponder. How unhappy must Prada be knowing that consumers can find this out so easily?

Now, to source me some of that Patchouli oil. Gotta be cheaper than $120.00 per 80ml.  

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The Robert Pattinson effect

An interesting thing happened on the way to building readership of our school library blog.

One of our staff wrote a post about Robert Pattinson. (You know him, he plays Edward in this film that’s done pretty well at the box office of late. Twilight, that’s the one. If you work in a library you’d know all about it. It’s the series of books by Stephanie Meyer that haven’t sat on the shelves in months; they’ve been from one schoolbag to the next  and are lucky to be still in one piece after the countless times their pages have been thumbed.) 

And our stats went through the roof.

We now have this cluster map showing big red dots from all over the world and blog stats showing 4,524  hits.  The biggest day registered 357 hits on the blog, and we’ve been averaging 230 hits or so a day since it was posted. Already today the 2rak info 4 u blog has had 50 hits while I’ve registered a paltry nine!

So, what does it mean. Not a lot in terms of the meaningful readership of our blog that we are aiming for. We are trying to have our school community access the blog and use it to learn about events we are promoting and new ideas they may find helpful. I’d say maybe 800 or so (quite possibly less) of the 4,254  hits we’ve had are from our school community. We’ve still got a lot of work to do in shifting the mindset of our staff and students in terms of having them access this resource as a natural course of action. We, too, need to try very hard to get posts up; invariably we get caught up in the reactive nature of school library operations and find time is against us. At this early stage we still have to send out emails alerting staff to posts we’ve written.

What does it mean? It means that Robert Pattinson is very hot property and can probably pretty much name his price for his appearance in the next movie I’d expect.  

It also means I’m about to conduct my own market research into the effect of writing a post about a popular movie icon and what this does to your blog stats. I’m well aware that this may cause inflated stats that do not reflect the quality of posts appearing on this blog that deserve readership. It will reflect the number of (predominantly) teenage girls who are accessing the web to find information about the much desired Robert.

It’s going to be interesting. Keep an eye on those stats.

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