Conformity: SEO writing enemy no. 1

I admit it.

I’m the teensiest bit prejudiced.

When I see someone with, say, blue hair, my mind instantly decides on what type of person I’m looking at. Based on nothing but the poor soul’s choice of hair dye, can you believe it?

It happens so fast that I don’t have time to put my foot down.

What’s at play here is, of course, a mental model. Mental models are mightiest when our minds are closed. They come in a million shapes, and you have some living between your ears, too.

Yours might look like this:

  • If she watches that series on Netflix, she must be that kind of person.
  • If that thing lies on his nightstand, he must be so and so.
  • If she buys that, reads this, and works there, she surely also does this and that.

However hollow and acidic they might be, they’re part of growing up.

We’re told by our parents how to behave, what to talk about, which career paths are the most sensible ones. And not the least how not to behave, what not to talk about, and what career paths will surely lead nowhere.

They mean well, our parents. I mean well when I try to teach my daughter how to be a decent human being. But they creep in, the mental models.

My point?

Your mental models make us boring. You and me both.

Conformity is safe but flavorless. Soft, but moldy.

Will that show in your writing? Absolutely.

So fight the urge to conform. Fight the most dangerous enemy of SEO writing there ever was.

Your audience will love your new gutsy self. And, in fact, so will Google. I’m paraphrasing here, but not long ago Google rep John Mueller pleaded with website owners to stop creating such crappy and damned boring content.

Google. Not. Like.

So what’s the opposite of boring?

Honest. Vulnerable. Abrasive. Personal. Black humor. Orange humor. Any humor. You.

Not the business-you. Not suit-and-tie-you.


Find the courage to be you when you write. If you seek conformity, you have a brutal business suicide waiting for you somewhere down the road.

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