I was thinking how great it would be if I knew which of the things I made would do well and which wouldn’t. When I start, I have to think whatever I’m starting will be the thing that does well. Then it occurred to me, no one knows what will do well. Ever.
It’s like when I was trying to figure out what makes my blog posts go viral. I was analyzing the ones that hit, trying to work out the common denominators, trying to figure out what I should do to create another viral post. Then I realized that if I knew that I’d be a gazillionaire because no one knows what’s going to go viral.
Marketing companies are spending gazillions of dollars trying to understand the properties of viral videos, posts, ads, what have you –
There are ideas – I read the negative superlatives do vastly better than positive ones. World’s Worst Cheese Grater will draw much more attention than the World’s Best Cheese Grater. Lists also tend to get a lot of clicks – combine that with WORST and you’ve got a hit.
The Top Ten Worst Whatevers will do great.
And someone must have gotten some audience with that “You won’t believe what happens next” thing – because there are a million posts with that phrase. It’s something like what my Facebook friend posted on her wall: “Oh, silly internet. I almost always believe what happens next.” And I think many people are now hip to this plot – so it’s efficacy must be changing.
So I’m making peace with the fact that I have no IDEA what will do well. And I must continue with my self-delusion that each next thing will be the thing that does well.