How Many Is “A Lot?”

how many

A lot of us are still stuck in this early web 2.0 mentality of trying to reach everyone. Fifteen years ago we all had our minds blown by the fact that you could make a video in your living room, throw it up onto the internet, and get millions of views. Why not try and compete for those numbers? Why not try to become world famous with an afternoon’s worth of work?

But let’s put that into perspective: The extended version of Flea Market Montgomery, uploaded in 2006, currently has more than eleven million views. Across a global population of 7.7 billion people, that adds up to around one seventh of one percent. That’s not nearly everyone. We can double or even triple that eleven million views across duplicate videos and remixes and we’re still nowhere near a full one percent of the population. With the most generous estimates factoring in TV appearances and so on, we’re still not even scratching the surface of “everyone.”

What you’re probably thinking right now is “So what? It’s still a lot for a local business owner.” Well, yes, that’s exactly the point. Eleven million people won’t help a two hundred million dollar superhero film turn a profit, but people still visit Flea Market Montgomery hoping to meet Sammy Stephens, years since he’s actually sold the establishment. Eleven million people isn’t nearly everyone in the world, but when you’ve attracted so much business that people are still visiting your store to meet you almost a decade after you’ve sold it, then the attention that you’ve generated is, literally, provably, and factually, “more than enough.”

So How Much IS “A Lot?”

Here’s the answer everyone’s tired of hearing but it’s the only one that holds any truth: It varies.

For a movie studio, a lot is hundreds of millions of people. For a high-end tailor or an interior decorator, it might be just a few customers a week, or fewer. For a B2B business it might be three or four promising leads. A freelancer may be happy with just one big client.

What we’re looking for isn’t just a ton of views or clicks, but a high conversion rate, click-throughs, subscribes, follows, sales, not just drive-by traffic. We’re looking to reach members of the right community, people who will help our message to spread and help us to achieve our goals, and you’re not going to reach those people by stretching for the millions. Big numbers are great for Instagram influencers, people whose income relies heavily on visibility for visibility’s sake, but for the rest of us, those of us who are trying to run a business here, those of us who are trying to have a lasting, meaningful impact, ten of the right people is a lot more than a million of everyone else, and we’ll get a lot farther focusing our efforts on reaching those people than running ourselves out of breath trying to reach everyone else.

As with every other area of content marketing, it’s not enough to just be loud. You need to get the right message to the right people. Sometimes that means writing a blog post to reach a few thousand people, and sometimes it means a personalized email to reach just one. Either way, Writer Access can help you to achieve just that.

 

Gilbert SGilbert S is a professional writer with over a decade of experience writing everything from research papers and catalog descriptions to tech magazine articles and music reviews. Gilbert’s interests outside of writing lie in marketing, film, and advanced technology.


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