Another Digg Success Story

    May 24, 2007

Tim Ferriss is everwhere right now. He’s even got Robert Scoble and Steve Rubel fawning over him. Blogging nirvana!
Rubel’s article will put you in the picture on just how well Ferriss has marketed himself across the blogosphere. And good on him.

The 4-Hour WorkWeek

 I grabbed a pre-release copy from his publisher and read it on the plane to India a couple weeks back. It’s a great, easy read and I was quite impressed with his balance. It’s SO not a get-rich-quick book, in case you were worried. I do recommend it, if only as a challenge to your status quo.

Now, Tim is a writing some really tantalyzing posts on his blog at the moment… I’m sure they were prepared in advanced and queued up ready to go in time for the book launch, but that’s not the point. They’re juicy content.

But check this out… go look at all the submitted stories from his blog on Digg. Notice something?

Two stories have been promoted to the front page and one more is about to go there (this one). The other nine submitted stories have almost universally performed really poorly… all but one not even making it to double figures. Is this because their content sucked? Is this because they were submitted with bad titles and descriptions? “No” to all the above.

There is only one key reason those two promoted stories (almost three) were so much more successful on Digg: the submitter. The first story to get promoted was submitted by Karim Yergaliyev and the other two by Muhammad Saleem (of Pronet fame).

Both these guys are among the very top Diggers. When they submit a story hundreds (even thousands) of other Diggers see that story in one of a few highlighted ways and are then more likely to digg these stories than others. Never mind the details about how that works… the point is clear: your success on Digg starts with delectable content but the clincher is getting your post submitted by one of the top Diggers. Yes, there are exceptions to this rule, but I’m giving you the best scenario with the highest probability of success, ok!

Remember my story of a few weeks ago, about how all Kevin Rose’s submitted stories on Digg get promoted (ALL of them!)? Well, check out Muhammad’s success rate. I’ve not done the math on this precisely but it looks like about 25 to 30 per cent of all his submitted stories get promoted, on average.

Translated: if Muhammad Saleem submits your story it means a) you’ve written an impressive enough post to get the attention of a top Digger (well done!) and b) you have, say, a 25 per cent chance of a bucket-load of traffic from a promoted story on Digg!

(Karim’s stats are roughly the same: out of his last eight submitted stories, fully half of them were promoted to the front page!)

Now, you can leave it all to chance or you can think hard about how you can befriend some of the top Diggers. Muhammad Saleem, for example, is very approachable. Start by adding value in the comments of posts he writes on the Pronet blog, so he notices you. If you have good reason to do it, link back to a relevant post of your own in a comment you leave on his blog. Do what I did and send him a message or two via MyBlogLog. I didn’t send rubbish; for memory it was a suggestion to check out a post of mine that was on-topic with something he’d written somewhere.

The point is, get committed and creative and you’ll get noticed… in a good way! Just don’t hassle, for goodness sake ;)