A few moments ago I scrolled through some generic buzzfeed article. “10 whatevers you just have to whatever!” or something like that. I clicked the link as a sort of automatic response, just lazily clicking for no reason, and I scrolled through the entire article without reading a word, just scanning for images and not thinking.
I imagine simultaneously at Buzzfeed headquarters intrepid intern Bobby Workshard peered over the surface of his comically oversized iPhone 6 and exclaimed to his boss “We did it again! 100% engagement sir! A click and a full scroll-through….so uh, can we talk about that promotion?” I envision at this point they high five, or probably fist-bump.
The Problem With Numbers
When brands are just starting out they’re often advised to create content. Any content. The idea from a marketing bean-counter’s perspective is that any like is a good like, any email signup a good email signup. And from a pure numbers perspective they’re right. If you have 0 followers and you gain 1 follower you’ve just increased your reach by infinity%. Damn does that look good at the quarterly meeting. The problem is these followers are ultimately useless. They don’t like you or what you’re doing, they like pithy top 10 lists. So unless your company, like Buzzfeed, manufactures top 10 lists you quickly find yourself with a broad, but shallow reach. You’re not talking to people that really love what you do, you’re not talking to your heroes or becoming anyone’s hero. You’re simply feeding the tired internet lab rats their shot of sugar and it feels great for both parties, but only for a moment.
Impact not Engagement
If you could chose between a 1,000 more “likes” or truly impacting a handful of people which would you chose? Let’s say the things others are not. Let’s create the previously unseen. We’re both sitting in front of the quickest, most accessible publishing tool ever created—let’s make something memorable with it. If we start creating truly original work, and trash the clickbait, you won’t believe what happens next!
[clickToTweet tweet=”If we start creating truly original work, and trash the clickbait, you won’t believe what happens next!” quote=”If we start creating truly original work, and trash the clickbait, you won’t believe what happens next!”]