Grow Ensemble Community Update: November 2020

Building a Community Around Better Living & Better Business

by | Dec 4, 2020

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Hey y’all, welcome to another Grow Ensemble Community Update. If you haven’t seen one of these before and you are curious how they work, you can check out my last one from October.

Before writing a new update, I’m getting in the habit of reading the previous one. Reading October’s, I can vividly remember the angst I felt in anticipation of our November election. 

While we certainly aren’t ‘in the clear’ yet, I’m relieved the results turned the way they did. My level of angst has (thankfully) dropped. 

Excited to be back with another update here, to share with y’all an inside look of what we are working on at Grow Ensemble. 

But before we dive in, once again a reminder that our primary goals are to:

  1. Learn (and apply) everything we can as it relates to leaving the world a better place than we found it. 
  2. Share everything we learn to bring more people into the community of more sustainable living, work, and business. 

We attract and engage this community through our content! This means our blogs, podcasts, videos.  

Here’s a look at November.

The Social Good Community Growth: Numbers & Milestones

✏️GrowEnsemble.com & the ‘Social Good Blog

oct-traffic

We hit another record high for views in the month of November. We saw 81,273 views in total! This is up 21.25% vs. October. 

Not the same growth rate we saw in October versus September, but growth nonetheless. 

We have a team goal to hit 100,000 single-month page views for the month of December, and we think this puts us within striking distance. 

It would require we hit a 23% growth rate, which is totally possible, just not extraordinarily easy.  

We’ve been in talks with a lot of potential partners and clients about the work we do over the last month. And one thing I want to make sure that I make clear, this traffic is coming exclusively from content. 

We don’t “pay” for any of it. We don’t run ads on social media, Google, or anywhere else. 

This is traffic we obtain organically from people discovering our growing library of blog, podcast, and video content. 

All we do: 

  • Build a content Plan based on topics and questions we know people are interested in. 
  • Produce content that is comprehensive, engaging, and addresses those topics and questions in-depth. 
  • Publish the content in such a way that’s both user-friendly and search-friendly (or Google friendly). 
  • Promote and distribute that content so we can get early eyeballs, build our authority, and as well, assess if our pieces are landing like we hope they would. 

You might call these our 4 Ps to Purpose-Driven Content Marketing. 

You don’t have to, though. It might sound too ‘catchy.’ 

We’ve become pretty good at this process I’m proud to say! And we are creating content at a pretty decent clip. 4 new blog posts this last month, 3 older blog posts were refreshed, and 4 podcast show posts were published. 11 total. 

When done right (despite what many believe), our process can move pretty quickly. For example this last month, we had the great pleasure of hosting the Executive Chair of Leesa Mattress on the podcast, John Replogle, to talk about mission-driven companies

6 days after publication, if you searched for “mission-driven companies” in Google, there you’d find our show post. 

Granted, there’s a whole ecosystem at play in the background that allows our content to get picked up so quickly…but, this challenges a lot of what people think about SEO! That being, it’s a massive waiting game. 

It certainly can be, but once momentum is leaning in your direction, things move much faster. 

ICYMI:

Here’s what we published on the Social Good blog this month: 

🧴 Plaine Products Review: Personal Care Products that Make Your Hair, Skin, and Planet Glow

☀️ How Does Solar Energy Work? A Step-by-Step Explanation for the Everyday Change Maker

🛒 Alternatives to Amazon: A Guide to Ethical Online Marketplaces

🌱 How Climate Change and Agriculture Convene—A Planet-Saving Story Waiting to Be Told

 P.S. — Thanks to all our contributors this month! — Alma Rominger, Annie Bright, and Ken Briggs

🎧 The Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation Podcast

podcast-listeners-graph

The podcast grew 14.7% this month, surpassing 3,500 in total downloads. 

We continue to skip the second weekly publication now and again, we didn’t force the issue of having anything go out on Thanksgiving. Why would we? 

The only major adjustment we’ve made to our podcast production process recently is changing our show notes into show posts

Instead of having our podcast show pages just have a summary of the episode, a couple bullet points on what the episode covers, and any resources or links mentioned, our show posts actually cover the main topic (or a main topic) of the episode. 

I’ve found this to be better because: 

  • People who might be interested in our podcast aren’t searching for our guests or their companies (not to listen to interviews with them anyway). As is typical with most podcasters, our guests don’t have “public name ID.” We aren’t interviewing celebrities. 
  • People are searching for information on topics they are interested in. And, if our interviews provide more information on that topic, we want those searchers to discover them. 

And, because of what we know about SEO, people do find them! 

google search resultsI provided the “mission-driven companies” example up above, but here’s another. 

We had the pleasure of interviewing SaraJoy Pond with The Conveners to talk about the important of a building a social impact network. 

Lo and behold, now when you search for that term in Google, our show post for that episode with SaraJoy ranks in one of the first few spots! One day, we might be number #1. 😉

ICYMI: Out on the podcast this month: 

💌 The Better World Weekly Newsletter

newsletter-growth-graph

 ConvertKit is our Email provider of choice. Sign up here to get 1,000 subscribers for free.

This month we grew the newsletter by 18.8%. This brought our total subscriber count to 1,499. And now, at the time of publishing this we’ve passed 1,500. 

This feels a little bit disappointing. I’m not sure the list is growing at the rate I would hope. We did send a lot more emails out to the list this month so we had a good deal of cancellations. 

We will need to get better at segmentation, so our community members with specific interests are getting the content and updates that are best suited for them. 

We are adding more new subscribers than we ever have, but also getting more unsubscribes. We’ll have to reign that in! 

Either way—our community of subscribers is pretty engaged. That’s ultimately what matters most to us. 

A nice feature from ConvertKit’s Creator Pro account, we can identify what % of our subscribers are highly engaged. To me, 78% seems pretty good! Our open rates on emails are solid too—consistently over 30%.

subscriber-engagement

Cause Campaign This Month: Conscious Consumerism!

a-good-logo-mauveThis last month, we ran our first full-blown cause campaign with our partners at A Good Company on the topic of Conscious Consumerism. 

Timely we felt, with the barrage of shopping holidays and gifting season upon us. 

At the time we are publishing this, we are still in it! But, for a little summary, here’s what we’ve covered thus far… 

We opened the series with an overview on the subject of Conscious Consumerism. We wanted to answer, what is it, what’s its origin, and what are both the benefits and limitations of this movement. 

For Part #2, we narrowed the focus to one realm of consuming more consciously, where we covered voting with your dollar. We want to highlight the significance and implications of the money we spend. 

Whether we like it or not, we are casting votes with the dollars we spend. Unless you aren’t spending any money at all, then you are participating and we should all be cognizant of what power we do have. 

With Part #3, we wanted to cover ethical alternatives to Amazon. While we didn’t get into the nitty gritty of why Amazon is bad (we will do that later), we wanted to give folks alternative marketplaces from which to choose, to support more sustainable and responsible business practices. 

We as well had the pleasure of welcoming Anders back to the podcast (we originally had him on to talk mindless consumption), where he and I dove deep into the topic of conscious consumerism, his connection to it, how A Good Company balances being an E-commerce company while as well encouraging their community to make more conscious decisions, and so much more. 

Lastly, both Annie and I hopped on for an Instagram Live with Anders where we fielded questions from A Good Company’s community and our own (thanks y’all!) on the topic of conscious consumption. 

It was a lot of fun! You can check that out here. 

We have one more piece publishing here soon! We’ll be doing a deep dive into one of A Good Company’s eco-friendly products, where we highlight the attention and care they take with their process. 

Up Next in…December ⛄️

Next Cause Campaign!—Regenerative Agriculture—We’re excited to announce our next series, running in the month of December, with our newest partners at Tablas Creek Vineyard. 

Tablas Creek is the world’s FIRST Regenerative Organic Certified vineyard. That’s right, the world’s FIRST! 🏆

We’ve actually already started to dip our toes into this campaign with our first post out now, where we discuss the relationship between climate change and agriculture

By the end of this series, we want everyone to be well aware of the planet-saving potential of regenerative agriculture and maybe enjoy a bottle or two of some pretty damn good (regenerative) wine. 🍷

Up *Soon!* — The Buy Ensemble Directory — Last month I mentioned that we’d be working on our new Buy Ensemble Directory. Good news! We have our first few pages mapped out and they should be up within the next couple weeks. Certainly before the year-end hits! 

Want to Write for Us? Know Anyone Who Would? — We are about to launch into a “push” to build out our network of contributing writers here at Grow Ensemble. Gratefully, we are partnering up with a lot of change-making businesses and organizations on content-driven cause campaigns, and so, we need to expand our mission-driven writing team. 🙂 

Does that sound like something you’d be interested in? Maybe someone you know? Reach out to me at cory {{at}} growensemble.com and we’ll get you plugged into our application process.

More Changemakin’ Podcast Guests—More great episodes out this month (as always)! 

Scheduled to air in December… 

  • Dion Hughes & Nora Schaper, from HiBAR (already aired, listen here)
  • Dean Cycon, from Deans Beans
  • Jason Haas and Jordan Lonborg of Tablas Creek Vineyards
  • Emma Rose Cohen of Final Straw
  • & more!…

End Note

Thanks for reading this Grow Ensemble community update! I hope you enjoyed it and have a great month to come. 

Cheers,

-Cory (follow me on Twitter

P.S. If you haven’t already, don’t forget to subscribe to The Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation Podcast!

Subscribe wherever you listen to your podcasts!…

👉Apple Podcasts, Spotify, YouTube or others!

P.P.S If you are a purpose-driven business or a high-impact nonprofit and you want to work with us at Grow Ensemble to use content to drive awareness and engagement around your better-for-the-world mission, reach out to us here

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