The 248AM Community

Post by Mark

com

Have you checked out the 248AM Community? It’s an online discussion forum and with over 200,000 posts so far, it’s a great space to ask questions and debate topics. You can access the community by clicking the link in the navigation strip on top or by typing community.248am.com in your browser.


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Two Anniversaries, One Month

Post by Mark

So this past Friday (February 19th) was my blogs 11 year anniversary. I published my first post here back in February 19th 2005, a really odd post which I find hilarious now since my blog has become what it is today. If I had known my blog would end up here I would have probably posted something a bit less… crude.

But, what I just realized a few moments ago is that this February also marks the 13th anniversary of my first post on my first blog ever. Back in 2003 me and a few friends launch a blog called Qhate and my first post there was published on February 6th, 2003. At that time we were the first blog based in Kuwait and unlike my early posts on 248AM, I actually enjoy reading my old stuff on Qhate. For those of you who don’t know, Qhate started off as a war blog in which we were posting about life in Kuwait during the 2003 invasion of Iraq. So reading through my old posts there just takes me back in time during the volatile period. If you’ve never gone through some of the posts there you should, it’s like an untouched time capsule. [Link]


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Closed, Will Be Back Soon

Post by Mark

ussharry

I won’t be posting anything today because I’ve been invited to fly out and spend the day on a US aircraft carrier thats currently somewhere in the Arabian Gulf. I’m not allowed to share any more details for security reasons but I will have my camera with me to take photos. I’m obviously super excited and I’ll be posting all about it once I get back to Kuwait.


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Would you listen to a 248AM Podcast?

Post by Mark

podcast

I should have asked this in the survey I recently held but completely forgot to. Would you guys be interested in a podcast where maybe once a week I just sit and have a discussion with different interesting people? It would be very Joe Rogan-esque but definitely not as long.

Would you be interested in a 248AM Podcast?







View Results

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Last Call: The 248AM Survey

Post by Mark

survey

If you haven’t taken the survey yet I’d really appreciate it if you do. I’m hoping to close the survey tomorrow so I can spend the weekend going through all the feedback and comments so I can start planning for 2016. It short, it takes two minutes and every feedback counts. Here is the [Link]


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Take the 248AM Survey

Post by Mark

survey

The last time I took a survey on the blog was in 2010. The feedback I got from everyone helped me improve the blog by allowing me to better understand who my readers are, what kind of content you’re interested in and what issues you might have.

Since its been more than 5 years since the last survey I figured it was time for another one. I’ve decided to keep the survey as simple as possible with just 18 questions that can be all answered in under two minutes. If you could please take the time and answer them that would be great. Your opinion matters. [Link]


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248AM in 2015

Post by Mark

stats

I was just adding last years stats to my blogs media kit when I realized traffic on the blog this past year had increased tremendously over the previous year. I obviously knew traffic had increased since I monitor the stats on a daily basis but I hadn’t expected this much growth. I had roughly guessed traffic had increased by around 30% but after collecting all the data, it turns out traffic had increased by 56% over the previous year.

Page Views
2012: 3,525,263
2013: 3,089,212
2014: 3,037,706
2015: 4,509,005

Unique Visitors
2012: 2,615,214
2013: 2,289,155
2014: 1,941,236
2015: 2,858,175

What caused the traffic increase?
One theory I have is my content had improved which in return caused more interest. Another theory is that people were coming back to the blog because they were getting bored of instagram or maybe they realized the kind of content I was providing wasn’t available on instagram. Another reason I think is that people today are overwhelmed with content but with my blog I try to limit it to just three posts a day. That makes it easy to follow since I provide curated content instead of quantity. But, whatever the reason may be, the influx of traffic kept this blog alive.

The result?
Only my close friends know this but I was actually considering closing down the blog last February on the blogs 10 year anniversary. Traffic had dropped in 2014 and so I started losing interest in the blog. I tend not to spend a lot of time on projects, I like doing and try a lot of things and I jump from one project to another fairly quickly. Working 10 years on a single project was just incredibly long and if my blog had hit its peak then maybe it was about time I moved and obsessed over something else.

But last January I noticed traffic had started increasing and then when my blogs 10 year anniversary came about, traffic had increased even more. I thought that was an interesting turnaround and so I decided to hold off on closing down the blog just to see where all this was going. Every single month last year ended up performing better than the year before. The resurgence in traffic got me excited again about blogging and I started enjoying it like I did in the old days.

What now?
As long as traffic keeps increasing and as long as I continue to generate income from this blog I’m going to continue blogging.

A lot of people don’t understand the importance of my advertisers. If it wasn’t for my advertisers I would have shut down the blog a long time ago. My advertisers play a big role in keeping this blog alive and so do my readers. If it wasn’t for my readers coming back every day to read what I had to say I would have also shut down the blog a long time ago. I wouldn’t want to write if nobody was reading.

So as long as all the stars continue to align, then this blog will continue to stay up.


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Nutrition by Fork Fed

Post by Mark

forkfed

A couple of weeks ago I was having lunch with a friend and not sure how the subject came about but I brought up the fact that I’ve been having a really hard time finding a nutritionist to contribute with posts on the blog. Thats when my friend recommended Hyatt from Fork Fed. So I checked out her blog and instagram account and right away knew she would be perfect. Her posts were not too long, they were interesting and I loved her photography taste so I right away got in touch with her and asked her if she would be interested in writing here. She thankfully agreed and starting from today she will hopefully be posting here on a frequent basis. Her first post is up below so check it out.

On a side note if there are any other kind of topics you’d like to see covered on this blog let me know. Right now I’ve got contributors for business, nutrition, video games and law posts plus I’m trying to get someone for fitness. What else would you like to see here?


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Business Posts

Post by Mark

business

There are only so many topics I can cover on this blog which is why I’m always inviting friends to help out. The latest person I’ve invited to write on the blog is Loaay, my first boss at the first agency I worked for. Right out of university I got a job at a small local agency here in Kuwait called Knights Capital. It was my first job right out of university and it was a job in which I learned so much in, mostly because Loaay was very hands on and a great teacher. I worked there for three years before moving on but we’ve stayed in touch every since (that was over a decade ago).

Anyway, his first post is already up below so check it out.


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Monthly 248AM Meetups?

Post by Mark

Elevation Burger approached me recently and offered to let me takeover their Al Bida’a location once a month. I could basically host any kind of event I wanted as long as it wouldn’t get them shutdown and me deported (so sadly no local winemakers meetup and no speed dating event). I’ve been trying to brainstorm and see what I could do, I’m not great at organizing things and socially awkward in general so not sure if thats the perfect skill set for something like this. I can choose between their indoor space upstairs our their outdoor space.

elevation

So, I figured I’d ask you guys for ideas, what kind of event could I host once a month that you would be interested in attending? I held a 248AM meetup back in 2006 and 35 people attended which was pretty cool. It might be an interesting way for people to meet new people? I don’t know I’m horrible at this. If anyone has any ideas let me know below.


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