90% of the posts in my social feeds are “ultimate guides”, “5 secret websites that feel illegal to know”, and other fortune-cookie-inspired platitudes 🥠
Now, on one hand, I generally try to adhere to the principle of “copying what works”. And judging by the amount of likes and reposts most of the aforementioned content seems to gather, it would look like they do work.
I tried the listicle strategy a couple of times, but the results I got from it didn’t show any noticeable difference from any other kind of post, even silly one-liners.
Granted, I did not put in enough reps to actually have enough data points to conclude anything relevant as far as its efficacy goes in building an audience.
What’s undeniable, however, is that from a creation POV, secrets/advice-based listicles are definitely more difficult to produce than more concise content.
Additionally, you have to consciously suppress that constant sensation of “What the heck am I even saying? And who am I fooling with this nonsense?” 👀
It feels forced. It is forced. And even ignoring the validity and goodness of that kind of content, producing it with some kind of consistency feels like a chore and makes me want to quit.
And that’s precisely my issue with it.
One of the few truths in the self-improvement industry is that to get any success with anything in life, you have to keep doing it. You have to keep moving forward. You have to be consistent.
And that’s why I think that “ultimate guides” and “how-to-succeed listicles” are a terrible strategy. They are very difficult to sustain.
An alternative strategy I’m considering: posting notes to self.
I often reflect and make notes to myself in my journal. And I’d find those notes pretty valuable as a reader.
They’re about topics I’m interested in and actually find myself often thinking about.
Yes, I’m obviously biased. But “my kind of people” – by definition – should find those notes at the very least relevant.
At the same time, those notes have no presumption of ultimate truth, and I’m not imparting unsolicited advice on my readers using clickbait and FOMO to entice them to actually read it.
It doesn’t feel like I’m pontificating and trying to jam it down people’s throats.
Plus, these notes could very well spark some interesting conversations and potentially new relationships.
And they take very little effort to publish, as I’ve already created them.
Seems like a very logical and sustainable strategy to me.
I’ll take it for a spin in the following weeks and report back about its efficacy. Stay tuned 🙂
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