Well, it’s the last issue of Voice for the Defense for 2011. I wanted to update you all on what the year has brought.
A year ago, we were a print-only publication with a circulation of between three and four thousand. We sent a free copy to all judges. Otherwise, our members were our readership. We struggled for articles.
What a difference a year makes.
February 10, 2011, the Voice Online started. The idea for the Voice Online was born in Huntsville during the 2009 Texas Criminal Trial College. Over the course of the next several months, we worked on the idea. We wanted all the archives to be online. We wanted the site searchable. We wanted a blog. We wanted a much broader audience. We have done all those things and more.
We still have a print publication that has the same circulation. But we are much bigger than that now. We have reached a point where Voice Online averages over 2,000 unique visitors per month. Since February 10, Voice Online has had over 100,000 page views and we are closing in on a half a million hits. A “unique visitor” is only counted once per month, so that means over 2,000 different people currently look at over 10,000 pages each month. If you search “Voice for the Defense” in Google or Yahoo, we come up in the number one position. We have a Facebook page that has 198 fans so far that also comes up in the number three slot on Google. Note that we have not done anything to increase our visibility on the search engines. It has taken care of itself because of the number of users. We are off to a great start. I would like to recognize and thank Melissa Schank and Craig Hattersley for keeping us on track and sweating me each month for my column. Stacy Clifford has done a great job with the site and he is extremely responsive, which I deeply appreciate.
I would also like to thank Joseph Martinez and our Board of Directors for trusting us enough to give us the money to get it all done. We came in pretty well under our budget of $10,000, but still, that’s a bunch of money these days.
I would like to give a special thanks to the authors and columnists who have taken the time to contribute to our publication.
I also wanted to note a curious side-effect. It used to be that each month we scrounged for articles. We have converted more than one seminar paper to an article in our days. But we now have a surplus of articles—great articles, by and large—and we get more all the time. It is hard to know exactly what the reason for that is. Gary Trichter has been able to convince several people to submit articles, and they are always good. By the way, Gary, I appreciate that. But that can’t explain all of it, I don’t think. And I don’t believe it will stop anytime soon.
Finally, I would like to share with you all what I would like for Christmas—bloggers. If we could have an active blogger or two, our exposure would go up exponentially, which would bring still more authors. Perhaps that is what is in store for 2012.
Everyone have a great holiday.