I’m a stats fan. My appreciation for stats goes along with a love of baseball, cars, and racing. All three entities use such numbers for specific reasons.
When I say stats I mean statistics. For some reason I have a hard time saying statistics. My tongue warbles the pronunciation. The word comes out sounding like sta stis tiss. Say that 10 times in a row. Using stats in a conversation rather than mumbling statistics keeps me sounding somewhat intelligent.
Stats to me are nothing more than talking numbers. To a statistician, it’s much more complex than that. Statistician is another word you’ll never hear me say. I use number cruncher to describe such a person.
My wife and I used stats when searching for a new home site. We wanted a place with the maximum number of sunny days. Such numbers accumulated over a period of years create a demographic weather timeline.
Now that we’ve found that imperfect place, we’re looking at stats to find us a newer, more perfect place of residence. We seek a location with a high percentage of sunny days, along with a significant amount of both warm and cool temps, light rain, and no snow. Bottom line being it can’t be an island. The name Utopia popped up.
I used stats a lot in my automotive parts days. Maintaining proper inventory was a big plus on having a successful and profitable parts store. I’d try to keep on hand only those parts that turned within a certain period of time. When I say turned I mean sold. In our case that much needed data was generally harvested over two years. In the beginning, card inventory systems were used to tabulate such. Eventually computers took over.
These days my wife and I use stats to make financial decisions where investment dollars are concerned. Because of a rising and falling stock market, oftentimes gut feeling is used along with stats. I’m sure that’s not something professional financial investors advise. On occasion, gut feeling is more accurate than stats.
Stats are used in social media all the time; perhaps not so much so by users, as they are by owners of the site. If you’re on Facebook, without doubt Mark Zuckerberg and his team know if you slant left or right politically, your religious ideology, including what you like to eat. This data can be mapped out to specific country, state, city, and even neighborhood.
All of these Facebook stats are obtained by users simply hitting the like button. Over time a data trail is established. If you want to mess things up, start liking things you don’t like. I do it all the time.
A WordPress site I use for writing purposes compiles stats for me. I didn’t sign up for that reason alone, but the information’s there at my fingertips. I discovered some interesting stats where WordPress was combined with my Facebook account.
On the average when I post new material on Facebook via WordPress, three people will like it. Out of those three, WordPress stats tell me only two will actually read what I had to say. I chuckle at that.
Facebook was not designed for users to read stuff that friends wrote and then posted. There’s not enough time in a day. The amazing part about Facebook is the power of a share. It’s mind boggling!
The other day I listed a new story regarding a defunct construction project in Arizona. This story was definitely not something most people would read. I only placed it online because a few friends wanted to view it.
Five people liked it, with WordPress indicating four out of five read the material. The stats there were right on. One of those five shared it to a Facebook site specifically designed for people interested in local Arizona news. From there another 41 shared it, making for a total of 42.
WordPress graphs showed after that happened, 890 people in 10 countries read the article within 12 hours. In short, shares are nothing more than multipliers. That multiplication on my story is still ongoing. I find this amazing.
By now most of you are now thinking,
“So, what’s this got to do with me?”
Simply put, the next time you decide to post a photograph of Aunt Gertie wearing a muumuu (moomoo) on Facebook, all it takes is one friend sharing such to make the woman world famous.
With shares multiplying like rabbits all the way to 402, 100,000 people could potentially see her picture.
That’s intriguing enough to make a person want to do it!