Social Media – Bad News Travels Faster

Social media are the new vehicles on the Internet that allow humans to interact with each other. They’re proliferating at an incredible rate. It can be as simple as a commenting system on a blog or voting on videos on YouTube. Most humans are sociable creatures and enjoy such interactions. Not surprisingly social media are becoming more and more popular.

Crowds are drawn to fires and accidents.

It’s all very human and the normal rules of human behaviour apply. Regrettably people are often drawn to check out an accident or a fire. In the same way, bad news travels much faster than good news.

If proof were needed, a small case in the last two days illustrates the strength of this factor. Lee Odden of TopRankBlog ran a poll on the Best Forums for Search Marketing Tips. The blog post would undoubtedly have drawn a certain amount of traffic. However inadvertently Lee omitted from the poll one of the more popular forums, Cre8asite Forums (of which I am a moderator).

The Cre8asite Forums have their own special character. When Forum members heard of the omission, they headed across in droves to add their comments and show their support for Cre8asite Forums. Undoubtedly the blog post has seen much more traffic than it otherwise would have seed.

Both the Blog and Cre8asite Forums have probably benefited significantly from this glitch. Lee has acknowledged that he had inadvertently omitted Cre8asite Forums from the list. It clearly was not intended as link-bait. Yet the final result is that it is more successful than it otherwise would have been.

[For those interested, at the time of writing Cre8asite Forums with 25 write-in votes in the Comments almost pipped the front runner in the poll, High Rankings Forum, which has 27 votes.]

It almost makes you wonder whether it is better to include some intriguing mistakes in blog posts rather than seeking perfection. That would be a distressing moral to draw from such incidents.

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2 thoughts on “Social Media – Bad News Travels Faster

  1. I would venture to guess that Lee’s post received more traffic because of the omission than it would have otherwise.

    And he may have gained some new readers from Cre8asite, too.

    A little controversy isn’t necessarily always a bad thing.

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