My brother-in-law Joey passed along an interesting fact about the month of October 2010 that ended yesterday:
This October had five Fridays, five Saturdays, and five Sundays, all in one month.
(Joey then proceeded to explain the significance of that set of facts):
That happens only once in every 823 years.
(While I’m certain Joey hadn’t read my blog post about how important it is to explain to online readers why they should care about the information you’re presenting in your blog, he obviously understood the concept. In supplying facts, it’s important to put those facts in context. As a business blogging trainer, I urge bloggers to demonstrate why the facts they’re offering might matter to readers, and to suggest ways that readers can use that information for their own benefit.)
The “once-in-823-years” part of Joey’s email, though, got me thinking about business blogs from an entirely new angle. I realized that, even had I known back in August or September that October 2010 would have five full sets of weekend days, the information would have had no practical application for me. (Now, were I a party planner, a jazz band leader looking for weekend gigs, or a minister planning sermons, the data would have been highly significant.)
But (and this is the new insight I gained), it doesn’t matter that I can’t use the facts Joey provided about October, because the information is undeniably interesting!
In other words, engaging readers’ interest by including in your blog posts facts that are even loosely related to your industry is a fine tactic. That information, though, doesn’t always need to be actionable. If the facts you present in your blog are intrinsically interesting, it’s worth including them. Why? To add variety. To make reading your blog posts fun. To demonstrate your own interest and knowledge in your field.
Interesting facts pay “interest” in your blog. Just because!