Discover more from Canadian Dividend Investing
State of the Stack: 2022 Summary and What You Can Expect for 2023
2022 was a big growth year, but it's nothing compared to what I have planned for 2023
The holidays are a great time to sit back, relax, contemplate what happened over the last year, and peer into the future. Allow me to depart from my usual stock analysis and say a few words on what happened on here over the last year and what you can expect for 2023.
First, what happened over the last year.
I entered 2022 with a goal of dipping my toe back into online publishing after it had been a pretty steady constant in my life over the previous decade. I started here in 2021 but my efforts were intermittent at best.
Long-term readers remember my personal finance blog. Financial Uproar combined common sense financial advice with many terrible jokes and somehow became a leading voice in the Canadian PF sphere. Despite creating a blog that was about as advertiser unfriendly as possible, the FU machine (as I fondly referred to it) made a halfway decent sideline income. I often wondered what I could have accomplished if I took it seriously.
Rather than selling it I let the domain expire, thinking there was no way my inane ramblings were worth anything. Someone snapped up the domain and flipped it for like $5,000.
(I just checked. The domain is back for sale if anyone wants to take a run at it)
Anyways, the goal for this here Substack was really simple. I would post once per week, which I thought was an obtainable goal despite working 50-55 hours per week at my day job. That was it. I just wanted to see if I could be consistent.
I didn’t hit my 52 post goal, but I still made some decent progress. I ended up in your email inbox 38 times in 2022 (37 excluding today), which I think is pretty decent. Most of the weeks I missed I was either working or we had some other previous engagement. I’ll consider that a solid B, maybe even a B+.
I started the year with 221 subscribers. After a year of fairly steady but unspectacular growth there are currently 524 of you who have signed up for my posts in your inbox every week. There are also hundreds of people who find my posts by going direct to the site here or who click links on Twitter.
That represents a 137% growth rate. That sounds much more impressive than 303 new subscribers, so let’s go with that.
I’m happy to say most of my subscribers are actively reading, too. Open rates are mostly between 60 and 70%, which I’m told is above the industry average.
Page views are also an important metric, and they come with the advantage of sounding much more impressive than subscriber numbers. Total page views in 2022 came to 29,483. Special thanks to my mom for hitting refresh over and over again.
The most popular post came at the beginning of the year when I took a closer look at H&R REIT and the recently completed Primaris spin-off. That garnered just over 1,300 views. The least popular was my 2021 reading summary, which saw about a third that many views. My post on Lassonde was the least popular stock write-up which makes sense since it’s a pretty meh stock.
Overall, I’m pleased with 2022. I accomplished quite a bit just tapping away on a laptop every Sunday morning in my underwear. But hopefully it pales in comparison to the summary I write at this point next year.
I have a lot of plans with the additional time I have on my hands going forward.
(For those of you who are new around here, I announced my retirement from the corporate world back in September.)
I do want to write here more often, but at the same time I think a daily post is just too much. The thought I have right now is 2-3 posts per week with a bi-weekly wrap up of the best writing I’ve found online. The other posts will be exactly what you’ve come to expect — individual stock analysis with a little bit of more big picture thinking thrown in.
You see some Substack authors with posts that take 15 or 20 minutes to read. I may dabble into longer posts, but the majority will take a little over five minutes of your time. I’m a big believer most of the stuff on page 100 in the annual report doesn’t matter, so there’s no need to rehash it. I’ll give you the info you need to know and not a lot of unnecessary fluff.
The focus will continue to be dividend stocks, a niche I think is valuable to my readers and is something I’m passionate about. I reached financial independence before 40 by saving a ton, being smart with my money, and funnelling every spare nickel into income producing assets. I’m living proof it works, and hopefully I can use my experience as a way to help some of you as well.
You may see a name change that better reflects what this newsletter is all about, but the content will largely stay the same. Besides, I also own the Canadian Dividend Investing [dot] com domain. I may do something more with that.
To circle back on the link roundup post I have planned, I just wanted to say I’m well aware that most link roundup posts are terrible. I have PTSD about personal finance bloggers who used to “spread the link love” by just linking to their friends’ blogs 46 times a year. They weren’t connoisseurs of information; they were business people who though quid pro pro link exchanges would benefit them in the future.
Or, as I not-so-eloquently put it back then, they were nothing but circle jerks.
You won’t see that here. I’ll make the effort read all sorts of stuff and only share the best with you. Your attention is valuable and I respect that.
I’ll also be more active on Twitter, posting bite-sized pieces of info I find interesting.
I’m a big fan of focusing on the process and then the results will come. So I’m not sure I want to make any specific goals. I’m going to read a lot, write some, and hopefully y’all find value in it. If I’m consistent and write valuable things, page views and subscribers will follow.
I will say I do plan to monetize this one day, and to do so I’ll need approximately 10x the number of subscribers I have now. But that’s at least a year away, meaning y’all will get everything for free in 2023. The numbers won’t lie. If I deliver value, subscribers and page views will follow.
If you’re new here, or just haven’t gotten around to it, click on the ol’ subscribe button below. It’s going to be an exciting year around here.