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Writing about Thought Catalog is extremely hard for me because every time I go to check something on the site I end up reading content for twenty minutes, or until someone jostles me out of catatonia. But I will do it, because it’s elegant marketing strategy is hands-off and intriguing.
For those that don’t know, ThoughtCatalog.com is “a place for relevant and relatable non-fiction and thought” according to their own ‘about’ section. The premise is that contributing writers to Thought Catalog are diverse and self-selecting, ranging from students to established writers, and the written pieces are unlike anything you’ll find in mainstream media.
Thought Catalog is immensely popular among a mostly young, mostly low-income and a mostly male audience according to the site’s August demographics. As this essentially describes me I’m not all that surprised. The content is relevant to twenty somethings because it is commentary on the underside of pop culture, and often focusing on twists and qualms relevant to young people in transition. This is substantiated by the search referrals to the site, which mostly consist of questions like “how do I know I’m crushing on the right guy” and “things drunk people say”. It’s fun, edgy, and as the Huffington Post puts it “illuminating.”
This, perhaps, explains Thought Catalog’s viral success. Because it’s aimed at young people, and because the articles are provocatively titled, everything on the site is shareable across a myriad of platforms.Checking out their incoming traffic, it’s not altogether shocking to see that the top contributors of traffic to Thought Catalog are sites like Facebook.com, Youtube.com and Tumblr.com. Simply put, the site knows who it’s writing to, has those people write for it, and the because each piece is sufficiently stimulating the marketing takes care of itself.
So, dear marketing bloggers, this is where you take your inspiration from this case. If you want maximum share-ability, you’ve got to create content that is fresh and disruptive in its interpretation of longstanding norms. You’ve got to title it adequately, and you’ve got to release it into the right atmosphere’s to make sure it spreads like pollen. Check out some pieces on how to market your business on more apt platforms, like LinkedIn, and then get to writing. If you need some inspiration, I’m sure you’ll find it where I always do, on ThougthCatalog.com
Ryan La Sala joins Compete as the Digital Marketing Co-op for Compete.com, sovereign of all things social media. Ryan is a current attendant of Northeastern University, dual-majoring in Cultural Anthropology and International Affairs (with minors in Biology and Psychology), with career interests in Industrial-Organizational Psychology and Consumer Anthropology. Aside from acquiring aspirations with big words, Ryan’s other interests include reading cheesy fiction, writing in any capacity, singing and cooking. Find Ryan on twitter @Ryality or connect with him on LinkedIn.