What Makes A Blog Post Popular?

Do you ever wonder what makes a particular blog post popular? I sure do! I’ve decided to post some of my most popular posts–from my blogs, from my Quora answers, and from other writing I’ve done–and try to analyze the reason for each post’s popularity.

I am going to start with a Quora question: Which is correct, “Here I come” or “Here I go”? Now that sounds like a pretty bland grammatical question, right? And yet it has scored as one of my top Quora answers consistently since I answered it back in July 2018. It has had 80.4 K views in a year and a half–and continues to get frequent “upvotes” (345 as of today) and “shares” too. How could such a plain-Jane question be so popular? Let’s start by taking another look at it:

Which is correct, “Here I come” or “Here I go”?

What a fun question! As soon as I read it, I pictured a small child at the playground, sitting at the top of a slide, with her mama standing on the bottom, ready to catch her. “Here I come, Mama! Catch me!”

And then I pictured a teenage boy standing at the top of a cliff, ready to jump into the pool below, with all his friends cheering him on. He backs up a few steps, takes a run, and leaps. “Here I go! Yeehaw!”

So “Here I come” is most likely used when a person announces to another person or people that he or she is coming toward them, as in the example of the child on the slide. Sometimes, it might be a warning (“Look out! Here I come!”). Or it might be in a game of hide-and-seek (“Here I come, ready or not!”).

“Here I go” is most likely used by a person to announce that they are leaving the spot they are currently in to go to another spot as in the boy jumping into the pool, or to an event (“Here I go, off to the concert.”), or to a destination (“Here I go, off to England to watch the royal wedding! See you when I get back.”), or to take a chance on doing something or succeeding in something (“Here I go! Wish me luck!”).

I love questions like this 🙂 They fill my mind with pictures and make me want to start story-telling! Thanks!

So why is this post so popular, I wonder? Here are some thoughts:

  • It’s short and sweet. While I like to give detailed answers to questions, I suspect that on Quora, at least, readers prefer answers that are quick and easy to read.
  • It’s a surprising answer. Readers probably expect a rather flat, technical, grammatical answer to this question. But I’ve provided a lively, colourful response. I didn’t use illustrations in the original, though I added them here. But I think the “word pictures” I used help readers clearly imagine the “here I come” and “here I go” scenes–in other words, I’ve used some pretty great imagery.
  • The images I provided relate to common experiences that many readers can personally relate to.
  • The post is active and amusing. I’ve noticed that many of my most popular Quora answers are ones in which I intentionally used humour. In fact, I started answering Quora questions as a way to improve my humour skills. In this case, it seems to have worked well.
  • Most of the vocabulary is simple and straightforward. This is a good idea for a worldwide audience, for many of whom English is a second language.
  • I used mini-stories as examples for the two expressions. Using stories is far more interesting and entertaining than serious, technical answers, don’t you think? And the personal nature of the stories makes the post feel conversational, almost face-to-face.
  • I had lots of fun writing the answer. If a writer is enjoying writing, that emotion comes through to the reader.

Did you enjoy the “Here I come” and “Here I go” post? If you did, why did it appeal to you? I’d love to know! Please answer in the comments. Thank you!