Jun
22





This Is The Most Amazing, Life-Changing Blog Post You Will Ever Read (Not Really)

As I have been making my way through my Google Reader the past few days, I have noticed a troublesome trend in blog posts that has been going on for awhile but is increasing even more lately. Not all blog authors fall prey to this, especially some of the more reputable ones, but it’s those that are trying to claw and scrape their way into mass readership, no matter what it takes. One of the methods these desperate writers choose to use is the extreme, adjective-heavy headline. Usually it is so extreme that no blog post could ever live up to the headline’s description.

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And on and on.

I get it. They are trying desperately to grab our attention in one line, at least enough that we may consider clicking on the link, browsing the article, and (gasp!) even share it on our social networks. The truth is that in a lot of cases it probably works. I mean, who could resist taking a look to see if it really is the most overwhelming experience of your life? I’ve fallen victim to the tricks myself, but I am steadily progressing toward just ignoring them, the opposite of what they are seeking to achieve.

Think about it. How could the author possibly know what anyone else has ever seen or not seen? Or as they gathered their collection of the “best” whatever, how could they possibly anoint their collection as such without spending the years it would take to exhaust all other possibilities? And how do they know what will make me lose my mind, or make me respond in some other extreme manner as I read their blog post? How can anyone claim to know what is perfect design?

Let’s dissect my headline of this blog post, for instance.

“The Most Amazing” proclaims that nothing ever has been, nor ever will be, as amazing as this. Is that even possible? Who knows what someone will write or post tomorrow, or next week or ten years from now? I certainly don’t.

“Life-Changing” sounds promising, and everyone wants to improve even the best of circumstances, so this one should definitely suck us into its vortex of impossibility. Can a blog post change your life? Possibly. Will you never be the same again after reading one? Maybe. Still, life-changing sounds like after I read this blog post I will be able to buy a mansion somewhere, or meet the love of my life, or win the lottery, doesn’t it? It’s a big promise to keep, and I personally have yet to read anything on a blog that I would give that moniker.

“You Will Ever Read” is just plain presumptuous. No one knows what you have read, will read, or how this particular blog post will measure up against those unknowns. It’s just not possible, unless the author is also a very talented psychic, I guess.

So maybe a more truthful title would be something like “A Rant About Extreme Exaggeration In Blog Headlines”. Now tell the truth: would you have clicked on that? Maybe. I might too, just because I’m somewhat annoyed with this common practice and would want to ride along with the rant to enjoy our commonalities. But the reality is that we live in a society in which everyone and everything is screaming for our attention, and none of us has the time or desire to pay attention to every single outburst. So we must pick and choose what we give our precious time to, and therefore those that are more desperate for it will do everything in their power to be one of our choices.

Is there a solution? I’m not sure. I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas. The only thing I can think of is to ignore the desperate attempts to clamor for my readership and commit to writing truthful, meaningful and realistic headlines for my own posts. I can start that on the next post, I guess. What about you?

  • Arlie – Brian’s Dad

    I have the best possible comment. It is stupendous. It can’t be beat, now or ever. It is amazing, life-changing, and worthy of utmost appreciation and praise. In fact, it is so good, I can’t share it here. Send $5 to xxxxxxx to receive your exclusive life-changing copy.

  • Persnickityfinck

    I loved it…lol.

  • Earthcounts

    “I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas”

    Well played, reader engagement seeker. Well played.

  • Nikki Buckelew

    Yours caused me to read the  post. Isn’t that the point? Not sure. Isn’t it?

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