I realized something yesterday regarding the types of blog posts that gain the most views. When there are pairs of posts on related topics with one having a more positive title and one more negative, the one with the more negative title gets more views.
Here are the numbers for two pairs of posts published in the last couple of months:
From early February, the post about The Worst Mistakes I’ve Made As An Employee has had 942 views, while The Best Behaviors I’ve Shown As An Employee has only received 296 views – less than one-third the number of the one about worst mistakes. Then last week I published What I Appreciate Most in Coworkers which has received 175 views in a week, while yesterday’s What Annoys Me the Most About Coworkers has received 217 views in one day.
I’m not sure what to make of those numbers. Are the posts with the more negative sounding titles more sensational? Do they sound juicier? Are we drawn to posts that point out the faults of others in order to feel better about ourselves? Or did these two just happen to strike a chord with readers and fellow workers? The content itself in the more popular posts is not presented from a negative point of view since that isn’t how I think, live or write. They just tell an honest story or make honest observations about negative behaviors.
What do you think? Why would a post about my worst mistakes get more than three times the views of a post on things I’ve done well? Why would a post about annoying coworker behavior get more views in one day than a post about behaviors I appreciate gets in a week?