Use the "F" word, get 4x more views?
If Gordon Ramsay has taught us anything, it's that people love profanity-laced rants.
Last month I had a rant of my own brewing, so I decided to let it out Gordon Ramsey-style in this post: Fuck You, Sears.
The choice of language was both natural and intentional. I chose to say "fuck" in the title to see how it impacted views. I guess you can call it clickbait.
I published the post, tweeted it, then posted it on Hacker News, just as I had done with my previous post about VC valuations. Both were on topics that I thought the community might enjoy (venture capital and commercial email/web design).
The result? The profanity post received over 4x more views.
Yes, my blog gets a pathetic number of views. It's good that I write for myself as much as I do for others.
By no means was this a scientific test, but I think the result is still telling. It tells us something that we already knew: clickbait works.
Update 7/14: I'm changing the title of the post to "Screw You, Sears", just because I wanted it to be a little less abrasive. The link and content will remain unchanged.
Follow me on Twitter @cschidle so I can say that I have more than 14 followers.