Reel Life With Jane was founded ten years ago and initially encompassed only my syndicated weekly movie reviews and monthly movie previews, which are currently sent out to some 300 print and web publications. The website was created mainly as a home base to market the columns, but during the past decade, it has grown to a full-fledged entertainment site with 14 writers covering movies, TV, celebrities, theater, books, film festivals, awards, pop culture and more.
So what do I do? As a website owner, every day is different, but here’s a broad look at what happens on most days:
1. Wrangle the email inbox. I receive up to 1000 emails every day, from publicists, writers pitching me stories, writers’ groups I belong to and more. The inbox is probably the thing I struggle with most. If one day goes by where I don’t address it, things quickly spiral out of control, resulting in me spending hours to get through it. It’s much easier to spend a few minutes two or three times a day. And of course, many of those emails require action from me.
2. Publish stories to the site. With 14 fabulous writers onboard, there’s a steady stream of stories, many of them time-sensitive, that need to be published every day. There’s also the fact that fresh stories daily result in more traffic, which keeps the search engines and advertisers happy. On any given day, we’ll post movie and DVD reviews, TV recaps, movie trailers, red carpet photos, awards news, celebrity galleries, giveaways and more.
3. Stay up to date on syndication. As I write this, there are two stories pending for my syndication partners (those 300+ editors mentioned above): a weekly movie review and a monthly movie preview. Some of these editors have been with me for ten years, and keeping them happy is at the top of my to-do list. There’s also a multitude of administrative things that happen regarding the syndication – marketing, contracts, invoicing and more.
4. Attend to social media. As I’m sure you know, there are a ton of social media sites out there, but only so much time on any given day. To that end, we focus on a few sites – Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest – and keep them fresh with content and interaction.
5. Work with advertisers. We have accounts with a variety of advertisers and networks, so we’re always keeping an eye on the traffic numbers, which posts get the best traffic, which advertisers pay the most and more.
6. See movies. New movies are generally released on Fridays, so I usually try to see two or three movies that day, and a spattering of others throughout the week – and, of course, write up reviews for the site and syndication partners.
That’s just an overview of things that happen daily around here. There are always lots of fires to be doused, as well.
On the weekends, I work on site design, html coding, e-books, a weekly newsletter, decluttering the office, and assorted other things. It’s also important to spend time AWAY from work, so on Sundays, I take my mom to church, go for a drive with my husband, and spend time with the family.
Yes, being a website owner is a lot of work, but it’s also a lot of fun.
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