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Is It Just A Novelty?

Richard Millington
Richard Millington

Founder of FeverBee

This happens a lot. You launch a new idea, type of discussion, or content series and it’s instantly popular. It might be one of the most popular things you’ve done yet.

Over the following weeks and months, the popularity fades.

This is because what you launched is a novelty. It was original, fun, and surprising. Ultimately, however, it didn’t yield any major value to the group and the popularity quickly faded.

This happens with many things; types of discussions, AMAs, working out loud discussions, feature-style content, weekly live chats, breakdowns etc…

Don’t continually tweak a novelty hoping to regain the initial burst of popularity. This is never going to happen. And don’t constantly hop from one novelty to the next. You will never find enough novelties to sustain engagement.

Novelties capture short-term attention, but they don’t change long-term behavior. And it’s long-term behavior change which is the purpose of a community. Hopping from one novelty to the next is a bad idea.

A better approach is to test small ideas. See what grows in popularity one week to the next without an initial explosion. Look for things within the community already taking place that you can amplify. If you have lots of technology-related discussions, maybe list the top few each week. Share the latest technology news. Showcase a good example. Make small bets and find something that increases in popularity from one week to the next.

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