It’s been an interesting start to the year here at TCR. We kicked things off with another successful cycle of coaching search coverage, and as the calendar turned, we shifted our attention to other areas like recruiting and NCAA golf. In fact, we’re on pace to shatter all of our traffic records from a pure numbers standpoint.
Everything has been mostly great, but I realize our content production has slowed down to an extent. That’s happened for a few reasons. First, I graduated from Illinois and am currently searching for a full-time job. Second, it’s the offseason which means there’s very little to report on a day-to-day basis. Lastly, we’ve become complacent with the same writing formula.
With that in mind, I think now is an ideal time to address the future direction of TCR.
One of my main goals after taking control of the website in July 2014 was to rebrand the space into a quick and reliable news source for Illinois fans. I wanted everyone to know what the news was, and how it impacted the team(s) it pertained to. And I think we’ve done fairly well at that because we’ve experienced some fantastic growth over the past three years!
But I feel that it’s time to supplement our current model with new ideas.
TCR is still going to be that quick and reliable news source mentioned above, but moving forward, I want to take a more community-centric approach. This website exists entirely for the readers and I want everyone to feel as if they have input on what we’re doing. This is a sports blog by fans, for fans.
We want to interact with everyone more often, to put it simply. I’ve always appreciated our frequent commenters (johnkirk, Irish_bandit_10, illinoise, and Igrunner34 to name just a few off the top of my head) because they continue to drive discussions beyond what’s written in our posts. I realize that commenting does have something to do with our content — and we have plans to implement more interactive features — but we promise to make more of an effort to join in on those conversations from now on.
Community engagement isn’t exactly something that’s been prioritized in the past, so we’re going to need your help. What do you want more of from The Champaign Room? We’ve been brainstorming a few ideas behind the scenes, but again, we’re completely open for any and all suggestions. We want your feedback!
With you’re help, we’re going to make this the online hangout spot for Illinois fans.