I guess by now, every blogger knows that Digg users don’t like blogs. I wrote about Digg before with a self-explanatory illustration What Can Digg do with your website from blaugh.com. On the other hand, it doesn’t mean that bloggers don’t try every trick in a blogosphere’s book (written by the same bloggers, who’ve been dugg) to reach Digg’s front page.
Well, nobody wrote about this particular trick on how to become Digg’s favourite blog, but two students from Germany have certainly discovered the secret formula of success and turned their blog into a front page Digg machine. So what’s the secret?
Simply collect hundreds of resources together on a certain topic and post them on your blog. Apparently, it makes digg users life much easier when they can go and look through all Firefox themes on one page rather than browse them by category from Firefox Official Theme’s page. Personally, I didn’t find any Firefox theme worthy of replacing the standard one. But who am I to think so – 928 digg users gave a standing ovation to Smashing Magazine’s collection of Firefox themes.
I wonder if Smashing Magazine’s founders knew that almost every other post on their blog would reach Digg’s front page with hundreds, often thousands of diggs? What are the origins of Smashing Magazine and how it was able to reach #271 on Technorati ranking in only 7 months of its existence?
Well, one of the blog’s founders, Vitaly Friedman, is the creator of a very popular collection of hundreds of web design resources, all under one roof – The Web Developer’s Handbook. What a great idea to break down those resources into separate blog posts. His co-founder, Sven Lennartz, is the owner of a successful German site Dr. Web Magazine.
So it’s not surprising that most of the Smashing Magazine’s English posts are simply mirrors of their original German counterparts, or vice versa. Travis from YoungGoGetter.com was questioning these similarities in his post The secret of being Dugg, exposed. I’m not sure whether it’s been added to Smashing Magazine’s About page later on, but they do mention about Dr. Web there.
Don’t get me wrong – these guys are doing a great job, collecting all these resources, some of the posts from Smashing Magazine are really very helpful (my favourite ones are Font related). However, I’m not crazy about some of the titles and the number of resources. I found only 3-4 websites from 45 Fresh, Clean and Impressive Designs to be actually “fresh” and “clean”, the rest were cluttered, with similar Web 2.0 trendy design features.
What I’m trying to understand here is the Digg users mentality. How come so many other great blogs never reach Digg’s front page, even though some of their posts come with more helpful and useful resources than posts from their favourite SM?
Should I perhaps follow the magic formula of SM success and post “8 bytes” (that’s a whopping number of 64 links) of useful resources on certain topics, instead of my usual “8 bits”? Is it always that the quantity rather than a quality that deserves Digg’s attention? Or is there another secret that’s less obvious but more successful than this? How come that this great collection of 101 Projects for Artists and Illustrators from DaniDraws.com didn’t get dugg? Is it because most of the Digg users are too lazy to actually do something creative and unique instead of copying each others techniques?
I don’t know – you tell me. What I see is hypocrisy among many digg users: they don’t say what they mean, nor do they mean what they say, and what’s more, they don’t do what they preach.