How do you get a mundane story to carry on a life of its own and get picked up by numerous websites including big ones like The Huffington Post? By finding the right angle to present the story.
As you know a great story written in a boring manner isn't as likely to be shared as a mundane story written with an exciting slant to it – something Gregory Patrick seems to know well.
Gregory knits. In fact, he has his own knitting blog. And when he wrote his latest post about knitting in Starbucks and being questioned by the police, it quickly went viral.
Seriously, how can you read, "The Time I Was Questioned by Police for Knitting in Starbucks" and not continue reading? The thought that no doubt immediately entered the minds of most readers is that the police were hassling someone just because they were knitting in a coffee shop. What's the big deal? People surf the Internet in coffee shops, they write, they read, they do all manner of things – why not knit? Is there a posse of anti-knitting cops out there? Or did Starbucks call the cops on this person because they thought he was knitting a bomb?
Turns out the cops were simply debating among themselves whether this guy was doing needlepoint or knitting. But to find this out, you've got to read well into the story and by that time you're hooked anyway.
Had Gregory simply used a title like, "Cops confused about knitting," or "Here's the difference between needlepoint and knitting" it's doubtful the story would have gone viral.
Gregory sold all of his knitted teddy bears within minutes of the story being picked up by other websites. It's a shame he only had a few to sell, since he probably could have sold far, far more.
So the next time you're about to write a blogpost, think about this – how can you present the information in such a way that people have just got to read it, and maybe even forward it to their friends or post a link to it on their website?