It’s only recently that I’ve discovered the wealth of articles and discussions on Hacker News, the social news forum of the Silicon Valley startup incubator Y Combinator.</p><p>So when I posted my “100 mile bike courier” story to the site back in November, I didn’t give it much thought. </p><p>Looking at the stats again now, I’m so glad that I took the decision to upgrade my hosting from Dreamhost (cheap, slow, slightly ropey) to WP-Engine (moderately priced, fast, reliable), whose managed Wordpress hosting performed flawlessly.</p><p>Granted — 7,000 uniques in a day isn’t a huge number for an established site, but for CycleLove it represented a quantum leap in traffic — of almost 7,000%.</p>
So, if you're serious about blogging, I'd strongly recommend you spend some time on Hacker News.
To begin with, simply lurk on the site. Read the trending articles. Try too get a feel for which stories are popular... and then try submitting your own.
This seems to be something of a black art — this tool might help you work out the best time to make your post — which, as with most things online, requires you to work with the flow of US internet usage and time zones.
Also see: Lessons learned from a Hacker News spike
On a slight tangent I also wanted to share a couple of tweets with you from 'power' users on Twitter, each with a following equivalent to a large city.
Erik Spikermann is a renowned typographer/designer (and cyclist) with around 244K followers. I'm not sure how he heard about CycleLove, but nevertheless he did, even posting a photo of bis Berlin bike collection to the site.
If you love cycles, as I do, you’ll love cyclelove.cc— erik spiekermann (@espiekermann) December 14, 2012
It's harder to asses the impact of these tweets as they happened right after the relaunch of the CycleLove site, but I can tell you that Erik's tweet in particular resulted in an instantaneous burst of sales on the CycleLove shop.
PS. Wondering how I got Topshop to tweet about CycleLove? I built their blog for them, a job which involved migrating 1,200 posts from TypePad to Wordpress. Not something I'd like to do again in a hurry (the migration process, that is).