A colleague asked me to share the most effective way to motivate the unmotivated into reading a blog post. I asked him to describe the blog and what their goals for it were and he told me it was about how to find great candidates for cleaning up animal crap at the zoo.
“Josh, you might be surprised to learn not too many people like shoveling up the elephant and rhino left overs.”
I knew he was being facetious but I suggested he consider positioning it differently.
“Stop telling people about how they are going to shovel shit and start telling them about the great workout you’ll have for them. Make it sound like some sort of crossfit exercise or thing that will help them lose weight.”
He rolled his eyes at me and suggested that I was playing games.
“There is no good way to fool people into thinking they are doing anything other than shoveling 50 pounds of crap.”
I nodded my head and told him I disagreed.
“Talk to doctors and trainers and they will tell about the merits of resistance training. When you go to the gym and start pumping iron you are doing so because the exercise is good for you. It doesn’t matter what the source of the weight is. A ton of feathers weighs just as much as a ton of bricks.”
Tell Someone Not To Do Something & They Will Do It
He told me I was crazy and I said he might be right.
“Tell someone not to do something and they’ll try to do it. I’ll write about this and call it 29 reasons you shouldn’t read this post and I promise you more people will click on it because of that ridiculous headline.
He suggested negative motivation wasn’t the best way to encourage people to do something and I agreed.
“We are not talking about using negative motivation here. We’re talking about convincing people that shoveling crap might actually be a pretty damn good job for them. They are going to help the animals stay healthy and get into better shape while doing so.”
I watched him nod his head and smile.
“You really are nuts, but maybe I’ll try it and see how it goes.”
“Look, there is a lot of truth in what that video game character Cave Johnson says.”
“When life gives you lemons, don’t make lemonade. Make life take the lemons back! Get mad! I don’t want your damn lemons, what the hell am I supposed to do with these? Demand to see life’s manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give Cave Johnson lemons! Do you know who I am? I’m the man who’s gonna burn your house down! With the lemons! I’m gonna get my engineers to invent a combustible lemon that burns your house down!” Cave Johnson is a character from the video game Portal 2
How we approach the world and how we spread/share ideas has a direct impact as to how people respond.
What do you think?