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One year on line for Lutheran magazine

October 3, 2011 3 Comments

The goal of providing timely, relevant news and information from a Lutheran perspective reached a milestone October 1 as www.canadianlutheran.ca celebrated its first anniversary. Launched as an online version of Lutheran Church–Canada’s award-winning print magazine The Canadian Lutheran, the site includes news stories, features as well as film reviews, cultural commentary and theological insight articles.

“We’ve seen more than 21, 500 people visit the site in the past year,” reports Dr. Ian Adnams, LCC’s director of communications. “And we know more than half come back multiple times because the site logged more than 78,800 page views.”

The news story most viewed over the past year was Many Lutherans still support traditional marriage, posted in July following the decisions by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada regarding same-sex issues. “With stories like this we find other sites establishing links to our stories or republishing them entirely,” Adnams explained. The next most popular post was an article about the movie The King’s Speech and its relationship to preaching.

Stories and articles written for www.canadianlutheran.ca often appear in the printed version of The Canadian Lutheran and vice-versa. However, since the online site has no restriction on size, readers will always find more content online.

Statistical information generated from the site shows a spike in readership every two weeks when LCC publishes InfoDigest. “Ideally, we’d like to see people checking the site two or three times a week rather than every two weeks,” said Dr. Adnams. Readers arrive at the site by clicking stories on LCC’s website http://www.lutheranchurch.ca/ or through links published on Facebook. Adnams say the online magazine has “a healthy number of ‘fans’ on Facebook who share stories with other Facebook friends in their network.” He also hopes congregations will spread the word about the site through bulletin announcements and word of mouth.

Over the past year www.canadianlutheran.ca has made changes to the site as LCC Communications constantly monitors readership and response. You are invited to use the “comments” section of this story to provide any feedback or suggestions.

  • Congrats on a good milestone, and thanks for your work on moving us in this direction. One comment on checking the site…

    I hear you and share your desire that people would check back often – true for our church’s site and others I’m involved with. But it just seems that the vast majority of people (myself included) need a push/reminder/reason to click a link – I often come to the site through a Tweet or FB post. Which just says to me that we need to keep emailing/Tweeting/posting on FB/etc. to encourage people to visit the sites.

    Also, do you have stats on RSS subscribers? Those people would be getting all the content, buy may rarely actually visit the site. So pageviews/visits may not tell the whole story in terms of how many people are actually getting the content.

    God bless,
    Michael.

    • canluth

      Michael,
      Thanks for your input. Twitter is not a big source of visits. All posts are automatically reposted on http://www.lutheranchurch.ca, on Facebook and by Twitter, so we hit as many bases as possible upon publication. I also repost stories on LCC’s Facebook group page.
      I think there is a growing number of people who are accessing the magazine online and not picking up or reading the print edition. However, for others, the magazine is an important connection with the church. That’s why we didn’t abandon the print edition.
      Ian

    • canluth

      We have 115 feed readers.