Ask the Readers: What is Your Most Popular Piece of Content & Why?

  • March 7, 2013 by Caleb Wojcik
  • 77 Comments

It has been a few months since we’ve done an “ask the readers” post here on Think Traffic and since it one my favorite things we do here on the blog, let’s get back to it!

Piggybacking off our post earlier this week about how epic content really does work, we’d love to have you share:

What is your most popular piece of content and why?

Whether you measure it in total social media shares, unique visitors, or some other metric, let us know in the comments below this post what your most popular piece of content of all time is (written, video, or audio) and why you think it is.

The point of this isn’t to just pat ourselves on the back and talk about how great we are. The comments will end up being a place for you to look at what other people have created and see how you can do the same for your audience and platform.

In your comment, explain your thought process behind why you created the piece, how you went about titling it, and if you modeled it after someone else’s content (no shame in that) share who it was.

Last Time on “Ask the Readers”

Previously on “ask the readers” we asked, “what is holding you back from where you want to be online?

My favorite answer came from Carlos Ramos. Here’s an excerpt.

“As stated before by some, I think the biggest problem we can have is ourselves. At least I know that is my case: lack of security in what I am doing, doubts in the content I can create, wondering if I will ever level up my writing skills, dealing with people that say “Are you serious? That is a total waste of time”.

But, all in all, if I do not believe in myself, who will? More than skills and techniques, I think I have to begin reframing my mind, believe in my project, (and) in what I do. And that is where I plan to begin, attack my negative ideas and build up from there.”

***

Back to today’s question: What is your most popular piece of content and why?

Let us know in the comments below this post.

Written by . Caleb Wojcik is one of the 3 C's at Think Traffic and Fizzle.co. He writes at CalebWojcik.com and hosts the Cubicle Renegade Podcast. You can follow him on Twitter @CalebWojcik.


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Frederik Trovatten March 7, 2013 at 5:50 am

Great idea!

My most popular post is my “Copywriting 101: The REAL Guide to Write SEO-Friendly Content!” http://www.trovatten.com/seo-friendly-content/ – It’s not the most viewed blog post. But it’s the post I’ve received the most offline and online feedback on :) .

Leah March 7, 2013 at 5:50 am

My most viewed piece of content is called “I was a Money Hoarder” (http://www.dollardarlings.com/money-hoarder/)

I think it really speaks to people becuase its real, honest, and something it seems like NO ONE talks about in the personal finance world.

Nick Eubanks March 7, 2013 at 5:52 am

I love this concept and I’m looking forward to reading a lot of the reader responses.

My most popular piece of content so far is a split between a piece I published on Search Engine Watch and a post on my blog. Thinking more about this I imagine my piece on SEW would not have been as successful if it was hosted on my blog simply due to the reach and traffic of SEW.

With that said the post on my blog picked up quite a bit of traction, especially after being featured on the Moz Top 10, which assisted in my site seeing well over 20,000 visitors within a week. The post is http://www.seonick.net/100000-visitors-per-month and I have another extension of this story coming out next week where I chronicle my journey to over 1.4 Million visitors in only 6 months.

Cheers!

Thomas Frank March 7, 2013 at 6:23 am

My most popular piece is 37 Awesome Streaming Music Sites You Should Check Out.

Why? Well, it’s 10,000 words. I wrote it because I wanted to find some cool streaming music sites besides Grooveshark and Spotify, but the only good compendium of sites was on MakeUseOf and it was really old.

So I decided to make the ultimate list for this topic, and the web responded by visiting it all the time. I also have lots of people emailing me in hopes to get their site included, and sometimes the big companies even email me to thank me or ask me to update their listing.

I’m in the process of updating it, as my list of sites has almost doubled since I wrote it.

Neill from GTR March 7, 2013 at 6:27 am

My most popular piece of content is this ‘infographic’ that explains basic music theory to help people write a song in 3 steps.

http://www.guitartheoryrevolution.info/blog/blog/2013/02/20/how-to-write-a-song-in-3-easy-steps/

It’s boosted the traffic to my site permanently by 100% and raised me into the top 3 in the serps for an important KW.

It was inspired by a similar graphic that has been doing the rounds online for years, but one that didn’t look good and had some mistakes in it. So I had a better one made and hopefully it will be shared around in a similar fashion.

Gary Korisko March 7, 2013 at 6:27 am

You just made me think about something that I hadn’t paused to think about before, Corbett. The “why.”

I write about (mostly) bringing real world business strategies online. But a while back, I wrote a post about a time when I was taught a lesson. I was on a business trip, rushing through airports and such, and (to make a long story short) at the end of the day realized a few negative things about myself that needed to be corrected.

I won’t post the URL in comments, but anyone who wants to read it can find it in my home page’s “popular posts” sidebar widget.

You know, if I had to guess why it’s been my most popular so far, I’d say it’s because it was honest and transparent. Readers get sick of reading posts where the writer frames themselves as the “all-knowing authority.” I think they liked that I seemed flawed and real in the post.

What a great question for your readers. I’m looking forward to reading all the replies!

Gary Korisko March 7, 2013 at 11:57 am

Oh geez. Brilliant. I called “Caleb” “Corbett.”

Forgive me, Caleb! Also…here’s the post I was referring to. (I now see it’s ok to post) :)
http://rebootauthentic.com/a-broken-rose/

Jason "J-Ryze" Fonceca March 7, 2013 at 12:09 pm

I did the same thing, Gary!

I think it’s mainly a reflection on how strongly our neural pathways connect Corbett with Think Traffic.

It’s his baby after all ;)

But yes, Caleb it is, sir, thanks for the great post! :)

Gary Korisko March 7, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Ha. Glad I’m not the only one.

I usually just refer to them as “The C’s” to avoid this whole mess. :)

Mike March 7, 2013 at 1:59 pm

+1 on Gary’s site as top-notch! Go visit!

Paul Maplesden March 7, 2013 at 6:28 am

My most popular piece of content was a guide that I wrote introducing people to Google Plus and how to get the most out of it; it was called ‘Circles and Plus Ones and Shares – Introducing the main concepts of Google Plus’. http://paulmaplesden.hubpages.com/hub/google-plus-introduction-shares-circles-explained

It’s been very popular, gathering over 300 plusses, lots of shares and hundreds of views a week; it’s about twice as popular as anything else I have written recently!

As to why? I think there are several reasons:

- I wrote it to be genuinely useful and also shared it in the same way; I’m not trying to ‘promote’ anything other than the guide itself
- I’m an experienced G+ user, but I know lots of people aren’t; I was trying to create a guide for them that guided them in a simple way and explained all of the key concepts in one place
- I used lots of screenshots and incorporated them into the article, to really highlight the key points; this resulted in some good shares on Pinterest as well as elsewhere
- I tried to strike a balance between providing a decent chunk of content, but not so much that people got bored; the guide runs to around 2,400 words which is quite long for online content but breaking the guide up with the screenshots etc. helps people get through it
- I shared it where people would find it interesting and engaging, mainly on the G+ advice and help communities; this helped it create traction quickly and led to multiple shares
- People seemed to be ‘ready’ for it; G+ has exploded in popularity recently and this seemed like the right time to write and share such a guide

I do enjoy the posts here, especially the ‘epic content’ ones. I think that if we have a passion for our subject, an interesting approach, original information and the desire to communicate it well, the only thing stopping us creating epic content is the time or confidence to create it. I’m delighted that this blog is such a proponent of making that type of great content, and it’s definitely a philosophy that I embrace. Thanks, Paul.

Sandy Weiner March 7, 2013 at 6:31 am

My most popular post was published last week in the Huffington Post Divorce section. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sandy-weiner/6-ways-to-recognize-and-s_b_2754804.html. It’s been up a week, and has received 1,181 comments, and has been shared on social media sites over 20,000 times (as far as I can track). I’ve received private emails from people who want help detaching from a narcissist.

As a dating coach, I had observed that most of my clients had either dated or been married to someone with a personality disorder, such as narcissism. My ‘dating a narcissist’ blog posts on my website had been very helpful to them, as they provided clarity in identifying the character traits of narcissists. So, I decided to share one on Huffington Post, but I had no clue that it would generate so much interest.

As a result, I just submitted another article on detaching from a narcissist. I’m interested to see if it generates the same level of traffic. I would love to help even more people stop dating toxic people, and create healthy relationships.

Srdjan March 7, 2013 at 6:32 am

My most popular piece of content to date is titled 30 Day Jump Rope Challenge – http://www.bloomtofit.com/30-day-jump-rope-challenge … To date, it has received over 230 comments, has been shared hundreds of times across multiple social media platforms, and has sent thousands of new visitors to my blog.

The challenge is simple: I asked people to jump rope for 5 minutes every single day for 30 days straight and record their progress. It was designed to motivate people to get moving a little bit every day. To do something active.

There is a post on Think Traffic that really opened my eyes to this. It was called 3 Ways to Keep Readers Thinking About You After Leaving Your Site. I used the strategies presented there to my advantage: I set rules for everyone to follow; I convinced a jump rope company to sponsor the challenge and give away a jump rope set to a winner (reward); I created a public online tracker where people can add in their rep counts, share comments on other people’s performance, etc. (feedback and measurable results as well as a sense of competition).

All of these elements really helped the challenge spread like wildfire. And I plan on doing a lot more of these in the future.

Cheers!

Srdjan
Bloom to Fit

Mark Kennedy March 7, 2013 at 6:34 am

My most popular post made real made real connections.

I highlighted 20 outstanding running blogs and their respective authors/owners.

20 Must Follow Running Blogs for 2013 and Beyond: http://www.healthynomics.com/2013/01/20-running-blogs-for-2013/

I did a similar post in 2012, which was successful as well.

But this year, I highlighted 20 totally different running blogs.

Some of these blogs are well known and some were not. This was an opportunity for those interested in running to discover some blogs/content that they might not have found otherwise.

This post was successful in my view, mainly for the real connections I made with other running bloggers.

They were thankful for me highlighting them and their blog. Also, they were happy to share the list with their readers – putting my content in front of a whack load of new readers.

Traffic is nice, but don’t underestimate the real value in making connections…and the traffic will take care of itself.

Paul March 7, 2013 at 6:34 am

I have 2 blogs that I write on.

#1: http://paulcampillo.com/2012/08/i-am-poor/

The “I Am Poor” post was popular because I shared with the world my financial situation, complete with jpegs of my bank account balance.

I believe it was popular because I made myself vulnerable, and I gave myself a big goal to shoot for. This is story is in the making, and gave readers a reason to come back to the blog for more.

#2: http://wakeupsmiling.com/eat-dots/

Eat Dots – I checked my analytics the next day and got 362 visits in one day alone. I suppose this would go under the “write epic sh*t” category.

Only possible reason I can think it was popular was because of the reference to Pac-Man and applying the gaming metaphor to life. It was something anyone could relate to.

Darnell Jackson March 7, 2013 at 6:36 am

Good question Caleb,

Case studies and Interviews are the most popular content on my blog.

The posts where I take time and show real life examples of what I’m doing connect the most with my growing audience.

Mauro D'Andrea March 7, 2013 at 6:37 am

Great Idea, Caleb! And thanks for this chance.

For sure my best post till now is this: http://www.blog-growth.com/101-experts-share-their-tips-for-online-success/

It’s the most shared, commented and backlinked post on my blog. It’s a 14,000+ words blog post, full of great advice which makes me very proud of doing such a post – even tought I spent around 30 days to make it.

At the beginning I wanted to make a round-up post featuring some internet marketing/blogging/online business experts. Then I tought “Maybe I should add value to it…maybe I should make it extreme”, and finished collecting 101 answers from some of the best online experts.

“How can I add more value to people?” is the question that completely changed my way of blogging. It’s a great question to help you make epic content.

Joan March 7, 2013 at 6:37 am

My most popular post on Man Vs. Debt in the past year has been How Could You Make an Extra $200 This Week?. I think that’s a case where I was able to share my personal story in a lot of detail, but in a way that directly asked people – how can you apply this in YOUR life?

On my personal blog, it’s The Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling as a Working Mom. This was a BEAST to put together, but I tried to create something that was full of my own advice as well as links to as many other truly top-of-the-line resources as possible.

Interestingly, in both cases, these top the most-viewed AND most-commented metrics. (I hate when I have a high-traffic post with no engagement; yuck.)

Dean Deguara March 7, 2013 at 6:49 am

The post that caused the most buzz and created the most opportunity for me is “Why Every Pastor Wishes They Were Francis Chan? I was sitting in a City Pastors/Leaders gathering listening to Francis Chan and watching people hang on every word and I started writing down reasons why everyone wished they were him. I posted it later that day and Chan’s publisher David C Cook retweeted and I rode the wave from there. It was reposted by ChurchLeaders.com but for some reason they tweaked the title and I thought that took the edge off of it so I didn’t get as much traffic driven to my site as I could have. I had the most fun with this post. http://deandeguara.com/2013/01/14/why-every-pastor-wishes-they-were-like-francis-chan/

Josh Collins March 7, 2013 at 6:56 am

I’m new to thinktraffic but am absolutely LOVING it so far!

The notion of my tiny blog having a most successful post, would pale in comparison I’m sure but I’ve have noticed a few spikes in traffic here and there.

http://bit.ly/YP0If5

This post was about leadership and was delivered simply. I’m a bit of a noticer, constantly studying and looking at the environemnts all around me. I’m also an Experience Architect and have traveled the globe for 15 years so this post came from just noticing what tends to set leaders apart from one another.

Christopher Walker March 7, 2013 at 7:04 am

My most popular post so far has been How To Embrace Discomfort: http://www.nogym.net/how-to-embrace-discomfort/

It’s consistently attracted plenty of traffic and been written about on several other blogs, which continues to bring more readers. It doesn’t have the most social shares of a post on my site but it does in fact bring all the right people. I’m looking for a highly-engaged and thoughtful type of reader, something which isn’t always easy in the fitness niche, and Embrace Discomfort has helped so much.

Since it started recirculating in the triathlon community, every post I’ve published has gotten huge traffic spikes and my email open rates & click rates are incredible. I’m pleased, to say the least.

It’s interesting because I wrote it rather quickly (after being inspired by Seth Godin’s new book and my current ‘uncomfortable’ living situation) then hit ‘publish’ and figured nobody would care – they’re all probably looking for ‘ways to get a six pack.’ Boy was I wrong.

I underestimated people. And now I have a steady stream of highly-engaged readers coming every day to read this piece of content that I consider ‘setting the bar’ for my writing to come.

Thanks!
Chris

Joey March 7, 2013 at 7:10 am

My best and most popular by far has to be one I modeled after your “Ask the Readers” type of posts. I asked my readers one simple question.

What are you struggling with right now?

Here’s the post: http://www.incomepress.com/struggling-online/

It’s short, simple, and straight to the point.

I think this one was a big hit cause it hit home with a lot of my readers. Most of my readers are beginners to intermediate marketers and most are still struggling to make it online. This post really opened their eyes and minds and made them really think about what exactly they were struggling with.

I went on to answer all their comments and even went as far as to give them some advice within the comments. Some are saying that those comments alone are like a course in its own.

One of the best if not the best post I’ve written. Gonna be tuff to top that one ;-)

Lulu Johnson March 7, 2013 at 7:11 am

Great Post as always Caleb!

I am a Physio and write a health blog… but by FAR my most popular post that I’ve written is this one about what the state of your tongue says about your health!

http://berry-diaries.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/enough-about-pooh-what-your-tongue-says.html

Another one that discusses why some people leave skid marks in the toilet:

http://berry-diaries.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/why-some-people-leave-skid-marks-and.html

has also been such a hit, with visits coming mainly from Google Searches. I often chuckle at what people have typed into google before reading these posts:)

They aren’t even Physio topics, just some interesting information that I read…never thought they would be so popular!

Lulu

Amanda McCormick March 7, 2013 at 7:15 am

This is such a good question and it’s great to read others’ “greatest hits.” Mine was
“9 things smart brands do to mess up the shareability of their content”: http://www.jellybeanboom.com/9-things-smart-brands-do-to-mess-up-the-shareability-of-their-content/

I wrote it out of frustration with the willy-nilly adoption of “everything but the kitchen sink” approaches to social sharing. Publishers who didn’t think about how people share and just threw a ton of widgets at the problem. I think it got popular because I took an unconventional stand and also because originally it had a picture of a cute puppy in it ;-) .

Kerry McQuaide March 7, 2013 at 7:18 am

My site is brand new, so I don’t have a lot to compare it to, but already the most viewed post is my “Taxes Explained!” infographic:

http://theaccidentalentrepreneurblog.com/taxes-explained-infographic/

And I think it’s because people like pictures! And it simplifies what can be a pretty confusing topic.

Karen March 7, 2013 at 7:21 am

This is a post I wrote when I first started blogging. Even though only a few people saw it, it compelled them to comment. I think it’s useful because it offers 5 practical tips that can be used in different spheres of life. http://www.the1bigthing.com/show-them-whos-boss-5-tips-to-do-what-you-really-want/

Joachim March 7, 2013 at 7:30 am

My most popular post is the Album Of The Year 2012 at reggae-steady-ska.com.

http://reggae-steady-ska.com/vote-the-album-of-the-year-2012/

It has received 368 Tweets and 9684 Facebook reactions.

It shows how effective it can be to start a competition and give people with a following reason to promote your posts.

Jason "J-Ryze" Fonceca March 7, 2013 at 7:33 am

My most popular piece isn’t even on my site, nor is it a piece of my writing, and it’s even got my old name/brand on it

And even though I deliver high-end, high-status life-coaching as easy as I breathe… this piece expresses *another* passion of mine:

It’s a provocative video called “I Love Women”.

It might be popular for any # of reasons:
-It’s sexy and aesthetically appealing.
-It’s a labor of love.
-It’s been at the same URL for 3 years, with great keywords.
…and much more.

I don’t think about it often, and I’ve always wanted to re-do it and re-brand it, and that desire still exists.

Thanks for reminding of this piece.

P.S. Corbett! What a FANTASTIC way to help others best work rise to the top and gain exposure, as well as a great way to case study “epic shit”.

Leon March 7, 2013 at 7:42 am

This has the making of another Epic ThinkTraffic post :)

A few years ago I ran a game blog, and I had written posts that did very well, I wrote epic content, but I’m going to talk about 2 posts which contained content I did not create that did amazingly well to drive traffic to my blog then.

I use to run a Starcraft 2 blog named Starfeeder (now just a facebook fanpage http://facebook.com/starfeeder) the following are the 2 examples:

The first time.
I posted on my topic Starcraft 2 about 90% of the time and 10% of the time I’d post something about another game or something about gaming culture. One day I was surfing around on Korean gaming websites looking for content about SC2 and stumbled on some hot Korean girl dressed up in World of Warcraft Cosplay. Now cosplay for non-gamers means you dress up as characters in video games, comic books, movies etc… so I downloaded the pics and posted them on my blog and linked back to all Korean website. (The pics:http://bit.ly/14xS5tc)

The next day my site was getting crushed and I had no idea why, I had to restart my server to get it back online too. Then I too a look at my stats and I had 7000 unique visits within a span of only a few hours! This was my first experience with the power of viral content, because my content till that point was averaging only a few hundred visits a month. That picture post over it’s life span ended up getting over 20 thousand visits it all started from Stumbleupon.com.

^ I believe a combination of timing, more male nerds getting online and cosplay starting to get noticed, along with the rise and early adoption of Stumblupon and other ‘social-networking’ sites lead to the power of this post.

Making connections
Now jumping a year ahead, I had moved and joined a larger gaming network, Gameriot and after blogging for a year and a half competition for our niche dwindled down to me 1 another blog and the fansites. Eventually through the use of article marketing and network marketing with power diggers my traffic would eclipse even the fansites.

I hustled hard making many connections in my niche… I was able to get invited by Blizzard, the maker of the game to come out to California, meet the devs and another community members and participate in their Blizzcon events with a press pass. At this point it felt like I was doing much more networking and marketing then writing.. probably 90% networking and 10% writing and I was at this point posting every single day.

Big connections happened at Blizzcon, gaming in hotel rooms and after parties, I made friends with Tasteless, in the world of eSports, he was the biggest name in SC2 professional game casting. He along with Artosis both did the play by play and color of the games. He liked my blog and I invited him to write and article for the site. He wrote an article now called the Tasteless Starcraft keyboard (which can still be found posted on fansites / forums everywhere, even though my site no longer is up).

SC gamers wanted to know all the tricks of the pros, anything to make them better… and also everyone loved Tasteless. Using my connections with people on Digg and other gaming community sites I managed a hit. It got on the front page of Digg in a couple of hours and sent over 30k unique visits within 24 hours. I soon got addicted to the power of digg, everything I did ended up being all about how to maximize a post to do well on digg. I ended up writing about 2-3 articles a month that would be a hit on Digg and Reddit.. those posts would end up sending over 100k visits a month to my blog which benefited by being run off ad revenue.

Now the downsides where that these were traffic spikes, about 98% of the users would probably never come back, or perhaps only come back for another ‘dugg’ article. Where this really helped me was 1) ad revenue and 2) getting noticed by all other gaming community, fansite, forum owners. My networking value increased exponentially.

There was a huge downside to all this however, that wouldn’t be apparent to me for another whole year. I had gotten to a point where I was doing everything for ad revenue, the quality of my posts when down, but I was blogging 3 to 5 times a day! Not just that, but my time was still split into about 90% networking, marketing, designing, promoting, socializing, tweeting, screencasting, gaming…. and 10% writing, and I was writing a lot. I was doing this all myself, 1 designer for gameriot was helping me with blog graphics.

I eventually burnt myself out.

Blogs are being run much smarter and better these days, it’s all about offering quality and value above all the noise.

Thanks ThinkTraffic for setting excellent examples!

paul March 7, 2013 at 7:44 am

Mine is definitely an article I wrote called “A Reader-First Internet”: http://pjrvs.com/reader/

I think it’s most because people feel the same way. I just voiced an opinion that others have.

Jane March 7, 2013 at 8:08 am

I am a small time blogger reaching out to the nature/children/art world…

My most viewed entry for 4 years of blogging is about artist Jim Dine and hearts!

http://floridacreate.blogspot.com/2012/02/jim-dine-hearts.html

I was surprised because this was continually number one and not just near Valentine’s Day! He has beautiful work and my young students were quite inspired by him and created some awesome art!

Mick Wade March 7, 2013 at 8:09 am

I write about motocross training for young riders, and I get more search traffic than shared traffic. So the search for “what proteins should a 16 yr old training for MX” especially now at the beginning of the race season brings a lot of visitors:

http://www.themotocrosssite.com/race-fuel-for-your-body-lean-protein-for-building-muscles/

The post breaks down how many grams of protein are in specific foods and describes what three meals could be to reach the right level.

This is a fun idea, Caleb. Thanks! I’m enjoying checking out everyone’s best.

Dirk Hoag March 7, 2013 at 8:17 am

My most popular piece of content came about by creating a resource that provided fodder for conversation, not only for my readers but for other writers to build upon as well.

My primary online presence is running a hockey blog, and whenever the NHL schedule comes out, fans in various cities moan & groan about how their favorite team is getting screwed by the league. “Our team travels all over the place”, or “our team plays games on back-to-back nights too often”, etc.

So what I did was create a tool to analyze the schedule and actually calculate the data on how far teams travel in a season (this is the 5th year I’ve published it):

http://www.ontheforecheck.com/2013/1/13/3872026/nhl-travel-miles-super-schedule-2013-back-to-back-games

For fans, it’s information they won’t see anywhere else. For writers covering all the teams, they use this as a resource to talk about how tough their team really has it, and most of them are good about citing my spreadsheet (offered as a publicly available Google Doc). The high point was getting linked by one of the writers on ESPN.com, that made my day.

Lorenzo March 7, 2013 at 8:21 am

My most popular piece of content is “Top 10 signs that you’re in Czech Republic” http://cometoprague.com/top-10-signs-that-youre-in-czech-republic/ mainly because it’s light and fun piece of content that is also slightly controversial. It generated a mountain of traffic for me in the past: for a week I had 10.000 visitors a day because of it and it generated also a mountain of content to the point I had to close them eventually. Before I migrated the URLs (and for some reason lost the likes) I think it had about 6000 likes.

sam March 7, 2013 at 8:33 am

Our most popular post so far has been an Infographic about Dress Shoes Guide. The post was featured on http://lifehacker.com/ and was published on many websites / blogs and on many infographic portals.

http://www.lifestylebyps.com/blogs/lifestylebyps/7254050-dress-shoes-guide-infographic

Thanks

Mike March 7, 2013 at 8:51 am

I have a few that are more popular because of ranking in the SERPS, but this article has been linked to more than any of my others within my community of blog friends: “How I Saved My Family $214,292 This Week” at http://livetheneweconomy.com/blog/2012/7/24/how-i-saved-my-family-214292-this-week.html

Thanks for asking!

Mike March 7, 2013 at 2:01 pm

As for the why, I suspect it attracted attention in the frugal living space because of the apparent dichotomy between such a large amount of money and the short length of time…

arne March 7, 2013 at 9:01 am

The most popular post I wrote is this article about creating a logo:

http://www.fwlook.de/design/logoentwicklung-42-swing-time/

I think it is so popular ’cause I showecased every single step and described why I did what, along with a bunch of examples and alternatives. What makes this post stand out of all the other “How to design” a logo posts is, that I explained all the small decisions during the design-process that lead to the final result

Robert Farrington March 7, 2013 at 9:02 am

My most popular piece of content from the last year was my critique of Robert Kiyosaki and his company’s bankruptcy: http://thecollegeinvestor.com/4726/ultimate-hypocrite-robert-kiyosaki-companys-bankruptcy/

I think it really struck a cord, because he is a well know figure, and I had a catchy title: The Ultimate Hypocrite. Since he is a financial “guru”, the fact that he went bankrupt is shocking. The piece was picked up by several large blogs and websites and traffic went through the roof!

Michael Davidson March 7, 2013 at 9:09 am

I haven’t done all that much marketing of my blog yet, so it’s hard to come up with an objective measure of what my most popular piece of content is. That being said, there are two pieces that I would consider.

My favorite post was one of my first, written under the influence of an intense life event. I wrote it during and immediately after my school’s Dance Marathon, a philanthropic event that requires standing and being awake for 32 straight hours. This writing is highly personal and resonated with many other people at the event. It actually got passed around quite a bit, and very quickly (though unfortunately I didn’t have the social share buttons on the side yet so nobody knows this), getting over 200 Facebook likes within a day. This taught me that a successful post should have an emotional effect on people and be relevant to them. Here it is: http://feelhappiness.com/32-things-i-learned-at-dance-marathon-2012/

The second post is my best piece of writing, called “How to achieve anything you want in 3 simple steps”. It’s about the process of achieving goals, but I thought that “anything you want” would work better. This post is most popular if you measure by the number of attempted spam comments, but it also did well on social media compared to most of my other posts. Here it is: http://feelhappiness.com/how-to-achieve-anything-you-want/

Sapna March 7, 2013 at 9:16 am

HI Corbett,

The most popular content that really caused a stir on my blog and which eventually led John Chow visit my blog and comment is the post about the engagement with the audience where most of the bloggers really falter at.Most of the great bloggers have become complacent and so this post has shaken many.

There were many strong views raised by my awesome readers and I could easily make out from their voice.

http://h4hitech.com/john-chow-does-not-like-comments-or-interactions-he-means-business/

Thanks for this great idea.

Sapna

Toby Brommerich March 7, 2013 at 9:39 am

I mainly have two popular articles, both centered around the use of Wordpress plugins. I think the average Wordpress user has a hard time finding the plugins they want. However a review or general walk-through to show them what each plugin does seems to draw in readers quite well.

Bobbi Emel March 7, 2013 at 10:03 am

My most popular post has been a guest post on Lifehack called “7 Things to Say (And Not Say) to a Grieving Person.” http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/7-things-to-say-and-not-say-to-a-grieving-person.html

I think it did well because it provides solutions for the common pain of “My friend’s father died and I don’t know what to say. What if I say something wrong?”

Linda March 7, 2013 at 11:02 am

My most read post by miles is http://wp.me/p1e2LL-193

‘Who else is lost in life? Confidence gone? Here’s what to do.’

Lost in life comes out as the most searched for term that finds my blog and shows me there’re so many people out there with no direction, in a muddle and at their wits end sometimes. This tells me that I should write a series of posts on this topic, about aspects of life in which people are lost, eg relationships, work, friendships, family,careers.

Thanks caleb, for the ‘heads up’ on checking my most common search terms and pointing me to write a series!

Bradley Charbonneau March 7, 2013 at 11:03 am

Great idea, Caleb! Good to make us think about the why. My most popular post of late is:

100 Post in 100 Days

It’s popular because:

I did something hard (not rocket science, just hard work).
I transparently described the process.
I over-the-top honestly list the pros and cons.
It connects with people doing a similar challenge–and gives them motivation and hope.
Chris Guillebeau tweeted about it to his 100k followers.

So sure, you could say, “Well, yeah, if Chris Guillebeau tweets about it, it’s going to be popular.” But remember our question: why? Why did he tweet about it? Because he was working on his next book and had written for several days in a row at that point. He related to the struggle, the challenge, the pain of the task. It resonated with him–and others–struggling (and succeeding) with getting something done.

If you feel strongly about a position, chances are someone else out there does too. You just need to find each other.

Atom Millionaire March 7, 2013 at 11:32 am

My most popular content is an an analysis post –
How Often Should You Write A Blog Post – http://www.earnyourmillions.com/2013/03/how-often-should-you-write-blog.html

I think it worked because I looked at various sources and provided the readers with PROOF and something that really helped them.
Everyone could have searched what I wrote but getting the content together and providing it directly to users with graphs was the key to my posts success.

Dustin W. Stout March 7, 2013 at 12:12 pm

My post popular piece of content of all time was only published at the end of January! It is titled Google+ Is Now the Number 2 Social Network in the World.

It is a dead-simple infographic that piggy-backed off of a 3rd party data set that identified that Google+ had surpassed Twitter in Active users and was now second only to Facebook. I knew it would be a hot topic, and I’ve had success in the past with creating great visuals that spread quickly.

I first published just the picture to Google+ (without a link to my blog) and within 12 hours it was trending on Google+ with thousands of +1′s and shares. In 24 hours it had been +1′d over 5,000 times and had over 3,000 shares.

Even though I added the blog link after it had gone viral, it still generated 10x the daily traffic and continues to get +1′d, Shared, Tweeted, and ‘Liked’.

Marcy March 7, 2013 at 12:22 pm

My post “If You Give a Mom a Blog” looks at how my kids react to my blogging.

http://www.tootimidandsqueamish.com/2012/02/if-you-give-a-mom-a-blog/

I chose it as my most popular post because it got the most comments and other bloggers seemed to really connect with it. It is a takeoff on the “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” books.

Tim March 7, 2013 at 1:33 pm

I run a cycling travel website called VeloNomad.

Most popular is Overseas Prepaid Mobile Internet by far. Next would be a bike bag review. This is good for me as it’s monetised via affiliate links (full disclosed) and the affiliate income is a few hundred a month for me, so it’s a win win.

Sharon @ Funken Wagnel March 7, 2013 at 2:50 pm

It depends on a blogger’s definition of ‘success’. Are we talking about hits, shares, or number of comments?

If we’re talking about the most viral post, for me, it’d easily be my Thermomix tomato paste recipe. http://www.funkenwagnel.com/2012/04/20/thermomix-tomato-paste-2/

The reason it was so popular, is because I had bought a thermomix, and I really wanted desperately to be able to make tomato paste in it, but no recipe for that existed. I felt that, if I was so eager for this info, other thermomix users must be too.

I was right! I filled a void by providing something a lot of people wanted, but couldn’t find.

If we’re talking about number of content and not so much hits or how viral it went, my most popular post would be http://www.funkenwagnel.com/2013/01/13/another-blogger-writing-about-gomi/

It’s about my opinion on the blog snark site, Get off my internets. Before I wrote it, I didn’t realise how strongly so many felt about the site, and how keen people were to have discussion about it.

I’m enjoying seeing what’s worked for others as well:) Great topic

Sharon @ Funken Wagnel March 7, 2013 at 5:36 pm

Numbe of comments, not number of content. doh

Fran March 7, 2013 at 3:58 pm

Great question! I have two posts that are running neck and neck right now.

1. Spiced Pork Chops with Creamy Mashed Cauliflower
http://www.flavorfulfork.com/2011/10/spiced-pork-chops-with-creamy-mashed-cauliflower/

I think the reasons this one is getting some attention is because it is my best food photo to date and people were really interested in the idea of creating a healthy substitute for mashed potatoes.

2. 8 Ways to Eat Organic on a Budget
http://www.flavorfulfork.com/2012/01/8-ways-to-eat-organic-on-a-budget/

Many people are becoming more and more educated on the changes that are occurring to our food supply and want to learn more. Often the main reason they are not making the switch to organics is because they are perceived to be so much more expensive. This list post offers some great tips for saving money and also encourages readers to share some of the tips they use.

Darlene March 7, 2013 at 4:25 pm

I would say I have a couple – one on my own site and one guest post. My most popular guest post was on Digital Photography School and made both their list of 15 most popular articles of the 1st half of 2012 and the 2nd half of 2012. It’s 6 Portrait Lighting Patterns Every Photographer Should Know Considering it was the first one I wrote for him I’m pretty happy with that. It has over 70 comments on it, has been Liked on Facebook over 3100 times, and has been Pinned over 7000 times!

The other is on my site and it was this one http://www.herviewphotography.com/2012/06/18/raw-vs-jpg-file-formats.html – originally I titled it “raw sucks shoot JPG” as an attention grabber as it’s actually the RAW I recommend as to most people. So I was trying a controversial approach to the headline and it seemed to work. Has 50 comments and I’ve been emailed about it even.

Maneesh Sethi March 7, 2013 at 5:22 pm

I guess I’d regrettably have to say my Craigslist Slapper post

http://hackthesystem.com/blog/why-i-hired-a-girl-on-craigslist-to-slap-me-in-the-face-and-why-it-quadrupled-my-productivity/

Featured in the Daily Mail, Guardian, NPR, ABC TV, Germany’s biggest television channel, front page of Yahoo, etc, Italy’s most-circulated magazine, all over China, eastern and western europe, and more.

Don’t know why people like to see me getting slapped…

Greg Smith March 7, 2013 at 5:30 pm

One of my most popular blog posts was How To Install RSS Graffiti on Your Facebook Fan Page where I provide a video tutorial on how to install the RSS app used to automatically post your blog content to either your personal or Facebook fan page. This app has helped me significantly increased my fan page likes and getting me more exposure using social media.

http://marketingpro76.com/how-to-install-rss-graffiti-to-your-facebook-fanpage/

Raymund Tamayo March 7, 2013 at 5:42 pm

Hi Caleb and Corbett,

I have two blogs. Based on page views, here are my most popular posts and why:

For my personal blog, raymundtamayo.com, it is “Marking the 20,000th and a Tribute to My Biggest Blogging Inspirations.” http://www.raymundtamayo.com/2012/10/marking-20000th-and-tribute-to-my.html

I think it’s because of the many bloggers mentioned in it, the links, and the “being thankful” theme. I’ve even got Twitter messages and emails from some of biggest names in blogging like Joshua Becker and Barrie Davenport.

For my other blog with my wife, Plain Haven, it is “Our 10 Most Relaxing Movies of All Time.” http://www.plainhaven.com/2012/07/our-10-most-relaxing-movies-of-all-time.html

This is a very generic post about a topic that many people are searching on the web.

PS: Great idea for a post Caleb, Corbett! This can be used as a case study on how other blogs made their posts popular. Thanks.

Melissa March 7, 2013 at 11:20 pm

I’m a designer and food photographer and my most popular post was one I wrote shortly after starting out called Is Food Photography in a Rut? http://www.melissahartfiel.com/2011/04/14/is-food-photography-in-a-rut/
It came purely out of frustration with the food blogging community and the need everyone had to be like everyone else. I wrote it in one session, from my gut and hit publish. The response was amazing, both in traffic and engagement in comments and on social media, including from some of my styling and photography heroes
I’ve found ever since then that the posts I write that come from my heart or gut are the ones that strike the biggest chord and get the most engagement. Theyre also the scariest to publish. But people love honesty and things that are real and they respond to it, especially if there is something constructive to take away from it!

Noor Shawwa March 8, 2013 at 1:27 am

Hello Caleb & Corbett,

My most popular piece of content so far is “Career Advice From 21 of The World’s Most Successful People” http://thinkdobusiness.com/career-advice/

It received the highest traffic and social media share rate so far.

I think it’s the most popular because it’s a round-up article, which tend to be more popular. Also, I think it leverages the names of some of the most successful people that we want to read and learn about. Also, promoting it on social media was great because I can share one quote/advice per day to “pull” people to the article (vs. once or twice for other posts).

Joel Warby March 8, 2013 at 2:26 am

Hi Caleb,

Just thought I’d get in on this discussion and share my most valued piece of content. Being fairly new to the ‘blogging game’ I have a limited number of posts to assess, however even at this early stage I would say one post in particular has been a great success.

http://joelwarby.wordpress.com/2013/03/04/webinar-with-scott-dinsmore-corbett-barr/

This is where I had the inspiration to write the post after listening to ThinkTraffic’s very own Corbett Barr & Scott Dinsmore’s Webinar a week or so ago. I wrote the post in the form of a review of the webinar and summary of what was covered.

After publishing, the post was picked up by both Corbett & Scott on Twitter who loved the imput that I had put in and in turn the post gained me about well over 10X my average visits.

I hope that this shows even at an early stage in a blogs life, you can gain some fantastic attention through Social Media and creating great, if not EPIC content..

Sarah Russell March 8, 2013 at 8:42 am

So far, my most popular website piece is an article titled “How to Get Over Negativity and Advance Your Freelance Career” http://www.writeyourrevolution.com/how-to-get-over-negativity-and-advance-your-freelance-writing-career/.

I haven’t figured out yet exactly what made the resonate so well with my audience, but I can for sure say that part of its success is how well the guest author promoted it on her own :)

Ammar Ali March 8, 2013 at 10:17 am

The most popular content of my blog is 12 Things To Do Before Applying for Adsense : http://allbloggingtips.com/2012/08/27/applying-for-google-adsense-program/

Almost all of us want to make some good money with adsense right?

But it’s not easy to get into adsense program now a days. We have to do few things before applying for adsense. This post explains it all! :D

Sunil - Wealth Building March 9, 2013 at 9:38 am

aside from promotional posts where I have given away iPads and cash to the tune of $2,000 to the winner that have received nearly 400 comments, the most popular “routine post” has been the following:

http://www.extramoneyblog.com/profitable-websites/

It’s a post about How I Built 20 Profitable Websites Quickly. Stages + Outsourcing + Resources

I believe this did well for the following reasons:

1) comes from first hand experience / story format

2) practical and actionable – readers can take the lessons and apply immediately

3) resources that I used are provided

4) transparency – I share a lot of my niche sites online and their successes. I show screen shots of revenues earned by my sites

5) I break down a complex process is easy to execute steps, while providing resources that can help share the workload – people are concerned about not having the time to dedicate to their projects, which this post helps address through its resources

since this post I have been working on some more similar studies

AfricaInside March 9, 2013 at 9:05 pm

The post that got the most shares on my blog is a feel good story about gorillas outsmarting poachers.

http://africainside.org/2012/07/25/gorilla-wins-poacher-vs-gorilla-battle/

WIldlife winning against humans is rare, and the featured photo of the gorilla ‘giving the bird’ also added to the intrigue I think.

Shandra March 10, 2013 at 6:39 am

What a great idea! It also allows us to share and support others as a networking opportunity on this site. What a fantastic group of people. I am making my way through reading other’s favorites as it is inspiring and motivating.

My favorite piece was an article I wrote that really came from the heart. It wasn’t commented on nor was it tweeted about (that I know of) because not only am I a newbie to the blogging world, but I had multiple issues with my site that resulted in not allowing comments for a while. However, it was published on an alumni site from my mentor, John Spencer Ellis, who personally wrote me saying it was an excellent article. I had people pass the article on in my community and had people personally come up to me to say thank you. I think that was a great start.

The piece is called “A Clean Slate” and can be found here: http://www.avibrantlife.net/a-clean-slate-im-published/

David Tucker March 11, 2013 at 3:26 am

Though we’ve launched our project HelpfulPapers.Com not so long ago, we already have some favorites on our blog.
This post on how to write a summary is the most popular one: http://helpfulpapers.com/blog/2013/02/05/writing-a-summary-check-these-fabulous-tips-for-excellent-performance/
P.S. What a great idea to share our most popular pieces of content. Looking through the popular posts of others has been a valuable experience to me.

Meg from LandingStanding March 11, 2013 at 9:24 am

My most popular post was a recent one I wrote on 50 Ways To Be AWESOME! The article discussed 50 incredibly simple (and random) steps you can take that will help you look, feel, and BE awesome… And enjoy life that much more.

http://www.landingstanding.com/50-ways-to-be-awesome/

I never thought it would get much traction but it had a attention-grabbing headline and people seem to love lists! It got big on StumbleUpon and 100k readers later, I am pretty darn happy with the outcome… I just hope I can retain some of these new readers coming in!

Darlene March 12, 2013 at 10:34 pm

My blog is fairly new so I don’t really have much to compare.

My most popular post was called, Forgive But Don’t Forget. So far it has received the most page views and comments.

I think the reason for the popularity is that most people can relate to the topic.

http://darlenebnemeth.blogspot.ca/2013/03/forgive-but-dont-forget.html

suzyhomemaker March 13, 2013 at 11:56 am

I debated about sharing because I feel like my blog is so small and still in the “hobby” stage. Plus I think it is much different from the other blogs above and not really filled with an epic content. But maybe if there are some other bloggers reading this who are small as well and in more of a similar niche, this will help.

This link is not to my most popular post, but over the last month, this post has moved into the top five. The reason I think the traffic has increased is simply because I improved the main picture and repinned it on Pinterest. At first it was just an experiment, but when I saw the response I got, I decided to work on more pictures from my blog.

In the link below, the first picture is the new fancified picture, and if you scroll down, the last picture used to be the “main picture” that was pinned.

http://www.suzyhomemaker.net/2012/10/homemade-greek-crockpot-yogurt.html

Dana March 14, 2013 at 7:19 am

We recycled some content into a different format and found a larger audience on youtube by taking our infographic and converting it to a video.

Don’t mind the title, our site sells drug tests online, but the infographic and now video is titled “How Long Does Marijuana Stay in Your System?”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=teuPYdt3zl8

The original infographic is on our ecommerce site at
http://www.homehealthtesting.com/infographic/how-long-does-marijuana-stay.html

Converting good content to video is a great way to expand your audience.

Jim Stone March 17, 2013 at 1:58 pm

My most epic post is this: http://www.workwithflow.com/blog/stop-setting-goals-that-dont-make-you-happy/

In this post I explain how there is a mis-match between the modern world and our basic human needs. And this mismatch causes us to set goals that don’t make us happy.

Then I explain how to set goals that do make us happy.

The post is 13,000 words, but I wrote easily 130,000 words over the course of 2 months in order to get down to those 13,000 so that it would include only what’s important and be engaging and easy to read.

And it’s epic because, if you read it, it will probably change your life.

My Money Design March 18, 2013 at 9:21 am

One of the highest searched articles on my blog (but not necessarily the one with the most comments) is a piece called “Should I Pay Off My Mortgage Early or Look for a Better Return?”

http://www.mymoneydesign.com/personal-finance-2/mortgage-refinance/should-i-pay-off-my-mortgage-early/

After hearing the same-ole story about people who wanted to pay off their house for the sake of getting out of debt, I wanted to write a piece that would look at both sides of the argument and present some good options. I had no idea when I wrote it that it would get searched so much organically, but I do appreciate the fact that it does. The reason why I think it is so popular is because its not an easy question to answer, and they’re looking for help with trying to figure which is the best of the options.

Una Opiyo | Good+Perfect March 20, 2013 at 5:41 am

My blog is quite new but my most popular post so far is http://www.unaopiyo.com/lazaro-arbos/ in which I talk about how our flaws are not our undoing, but that we should find other elements of ourselves to focus on.

I’m sure I’m going to enjoy reading all your brilliant posts :)

zoomingjapan March 25, 2013 at 8:39 am

The most viewed post is “Spring in Japan: My trips in 2012“.
This post was featured on a Japanese online newspaper because I wrote about my trip when I visited the region that was hit and damaged by the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

It’s great that this is my most viewed post because it’s a summary of all my spring trips and so I link to the detailed posts of each location in this post.

The most discussed post is “A German Alien in Japan“.
It’s the first post of a blog series where I write about my daily life as a foreigner in Japan.

Anja M March 25, 2013 at 11:31 am

We’ve been thinking about doing an “ask the reader’s” feature on our blog for a little while now and I think after reading this we’ve made up our mind.

Thanks for the great post!

-Anja

Mervi Eskelinen March 30, 2013 at 6:06 am

My most viewed piece is called Why is support more important than “constructive” criticism? (http://mervi.helmikuu.net/2012-05-why-support-more-important-constructive-criticism). It’s so popular most likely because I’m not the only one bored to this so called constructive criticism people are so keen to give. Without knowing what constructive even means.

My most shared and most searched piece is called Instagram keeps censoring hashtags (http://mervi.helmikuu.net/2012-12-instagram-keeps-censoring-hashtags). The hashtag censorship is really a problem on Instagram and many users are getting frustrated when non-offensive hashtags have been blocked.

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