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What's your drop-off point?

“When we stop caring about what people think, we lose our capacity for connection. When we become defined by what people think, we lose our willingness to be vulnerable. If we dismiss all the criticism, we lose out on important feedback, but if we subject ourselves to the hatefulness, our spirits gets crushed. It’s a tightrope, shame resilience is the balance bar, and the safety net below is the one or two people in our lives who can help us reality-check the criticism and cynicism.” 
- Brene Brown

When we set out to do something, the biggest fear we can have is one of being ignored. We can put in a lot of effort and produce something, only for nobody to read it or listen to it or see it. And thus, we hesitate to create.

Facebook understands this very well. Every time someone 'likes' or comments on what you have shared, they send you a notification. This acts as a reassurance that what you share isn't falling into a void, that there are people out there looking at what you share.

There is an important metric at Facebook coming out of an analysis of all their users. I call this the drop-off point. If a user who creates an account on Facebook doesn't interact with ten friends in the first week, they drop off with a high probability and fail to be active users of the platform. There are similar metrics for how many people should interact with something a user posts in the first few hours failing which they decide never to post again. 

And they optimise their experience for these metrics. When a new user adds a friend, Facebook asks this friend to suggest more friends for the new user. They did this with Facebook Live. Whenever you posted a video, they sent out a notification to all your friends so that the likelihood of people seeing and liking your post is higher, which would mean that you posting a live video again is higher.

Whatever it is that you're afraid of doing, be it writing a blog post or a book, creating music, taking photos, or if that's your game, posting on social media, then figure out your own drop-off point. 

How many people do you want to interact with your content before you drop off? And make sure you actively seek out these first few people for feedback. 

It is the same when you're building a new product or a new feature. Before you think about SEO and sales channels, make a personal sale to the number of people you need to cross your drop-off point. That's the first step.

Figuring out how to reach thousands of people comes later. The first step is to cross your drop-off point. 

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