Stories From Scarborough will soon be four months old. A great deal has happened during that time, including:
A Facebook page about the project
Mentions/retweets on Twitter
Emails from readers contributing memories
The visitor statistics also reveal some interesting trends:
Most Popular Attractions
Thoughts: It makes sense that the earliest posts are the most popular, given that they’ve simply been online longer. However, these three are also the most recent of the selected attractions, which perhaps reflects a younger audience, i.e. those more likely to access social media and websites such as this.
Most Searched For
= 3) Water Chute
= 3) Hispaniola
Thoughts: Interesting to note that Marvel’s didn’t make the top three, nor did Atlantis. There is very little information or pictures relating to Kinderland online, which is perhaps why it is a popular search choice. For many of the selected attractions there are few comprehensive resources online (although no doubt there are books, articles or other researchers out there), so hopefully Stories From Scarborough can provide some answers for curious Google-ers.
1) Search engines
Thoughts: Once again, few surprises here. The project is selective, therefore it makes sense that those who visit are most likely to be seeking out the specific information it contains. Social media has provided an excellent way to showcase the project, and will continue to be a key part of sharing new developments.
So, to summarise:
The site is getting lots of visits, and it seems that those who visit, read widely (i.e. visit different pages). It has rapidly climbed the Google search results and appears in lots of image searches, even those with only a tenuous link to Scarborough. Several people have got in touch with stories, and all feedback so far has been positive (although criticism is equally welcome).
Readers seem reluctant to comment on the posts, which would be greatly enriched by the contribution of memories/opinions etc. There have been multiple shares and likes on Facebook and Twitter, but conversations and comments would be even better. However, given the organic nature of the project, it is impossible to predict how and to what extent people will want to engage with it.
Indeed, Stories From Scarborough could develop in any number of directions – new attractions could (and already have) been incorporated at the request of readers; performances and artworks could be made collaboratively with individuals and organisations; the planned exhibition could take place in an unconventional space. It could be a small project or a large one. A short one or a long term one.
Not knowing is kind of exciting. One thing is certain, however – there are some exciting new posts in the pipeline, and plenty of plans for the future.
1) Successfully relocate to Scarborough (due to the move Stories From Scarborough may be relatively quiet until July)
2) Showcase the project at the 2014 Create@Salford Festival in June (last exhibition opportunity before the move)
3) Make more links with interested individuals and organisations (both in Scarborough and elsewhere)
4) Further promotional activities to assist with research and contribution of memories
5) An online questionnaire to encourage further engagement with the site
6) Events/meetings/performances in Scarborough
7) Develop art/performance ideas further
8) Research selected attractions in more depth, aided by better access to resources once in Scarborough
9) Begin work on a permanent website
10) Apply for some kind of funding for the project