SHS #72: New Way To Go Viral (With Proof)


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New Way To Go Viral (With Proof)

I’m recently noticing a trend, as a creator and consumer.

I enjoy reading offbeat stories lately. They’re completely random:

  • a wine sommelier’s experience
  • a Scandinavian’s experience in America
  • how fitness is different for people in their forties

Basically, not your average productivity and hustle stories.

Before writing this, I loved a story I read on LinkedIn about a backpacker in Mumbai who uses a vintage camera for photography. He entered a 90-year-old restaurant and photographed a few corners. The owner noticed this and told him with a smile and gleaming eyes that he’s been collecting cameras for decades. He hopes to pass them on to his children and grandchildren after he dies.

These are real stories.

The real human essence.

And luckily, they’re also going viral. Here’s why.

Proof That It Works Well

Let me show you the numbers of my travel stories across platforms. In fact, let me show you the ones I posted this year alone.

I travelled to Japan 5 months ago and was in Australia last month.

They’re also easier for me to find, haha.

LinkedIn

My travel story about Australia:

Another travel story about Australia:

This one is about 8 observations from spending 14 days in Japan:

Another one about Japan where I write four observations from spending four days in Tokyo:

Medium

I published this when I got back from my travel.

A similar story I wrote earlier about Japan:

And wrote this when I got back from Europe last year:

Now, let’s get started and figure out why this works.

1/ Unpredictability

Let me be honest with you, I’m tired of reading about productivity and self-improvement.

I still write these stories sometimes, because I realise that while I may not enjoy reading them as much, some people still do. Many people gain from it as everyone is at a distinct step in their self-improvement journey.

With travel stories, it spikes interest.

You cannot just guess what’s in the story.

In fact, there are no two same stories about travel because everyone has a unique experience. That unpredictability and adventure is exciting.

2/ Scientifically Unproven

With productivity and self-improvement, while I don’t know about the author’s life experience, I know that the baseline science is the same.

I know the benefits of waking up at 5 am or sleeping enough.

With travel, there’s no science or logic behind what you’re going to read.

It’s pure experience.

3/ Breath of Fresh Air

That’s how most people who pop into my DMs describe how my stories made them feel.

Especially on LinkedIn, in the sea of

  • chat GPT prompts
  • productivity tips
  • office stories
  • inspirational stuff

Travel stories come like a wave of sharing human emotion.

When you click on one, you know you’re in for a treat.

4/ Human Experience

And human emotion is always an enjoyable read.

Tell me

  • the last time you experienced a culture shock
  • about your favourite wine-and-cheese pairings
  • how different is your home country from your travels?
  • your experience during the hike you went on last summer

I want to feel what you felt.

I want to learn what you learnt.

I want to know about how every curve of the mountain made you feel.

Some travel stories make you feel you’re travelling too because as you read and picture all those words in your head. Those stories give the true pleasure of reading.

5/ Photos

Are fun, and personal.

Photos of your family barbecue, of you tired but smiling on a trek, of your camps, or how you converted an old caravan into a home.

It’s an insight into your personal life.

Of the person behind the words.

Only till you’re comfortable, of course. I still haven’t shared pictures of my loved ones online because that’s out of my comfort zone.

6/ The Inner Journey

I felt this for the first time when I solo-travelled at 21.

Before that, I didn’t really spend time with myself or explore places on my own. I didn’t even go for coffee alone. Not because I had a problem with it, it just didn’t happen.

During solo travelling, I became more vigilant because I had to be responsible for myself.

In that process, I also slowly became more aware of myself.

My quirks.

And I began to accept a lot of it and change it too.

The inner journey isn’t always spiritual. Sometimes, it’s just something as simple as a gesture by a stranger that melted your heart.

Travel puts us through a journey nothing else can, and that’s what makes it beautiful.

Lastly

I hope this is a ray of hope for my fellow travellers that they don’t need to succumb to self-improvement to build a readership online.

I also hope this helps everyone else who has stories to tell but think they’re not valuable enough or fall into the usual genres that online writers use.

Your stories and your life experiences are valuable.

Happy writing!

Love,

N


Before you leave, here's how I can help you ace your goals:

  1. ​LinkedIn Ultimate Content Mastery: a self-paced LinkedIn course to help you grow on LinkedIn and write compelling stories that attract opportunities. I gained 75k followers in 12 months and became LinkedIn Top Voice within a year of writing, so this stuff works.
  2. ​LinkedIn Ultimate Content Mastery- India (for Indian 🇮🇳 users): Same as above, but enables you to make INR payments with parity pricing (yay).
  3. ​Summit 21: Join my flagship cohort-based course, Summit 21. This will be the fourth and last cohort of 2023.

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Niharikaa Kaur Sodhi

I write tips around side hustling, writing, and monetisation to 15,000+ superstars every Saturday.

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