There's a Branch in My Tea Cup (Or, How to Get Someone to Read Your Blog Posts)

Pine Needles in Tea

Did you know you can eat trees?

I'm not talking about a gourmet dish of stir-fried hemlock. More like pieces of trees. You probably knew that if you are, say, a cinnamon lover. I did too.

Except I didn't know I could eat pieces of trees that sit in my own back yard...

forsythia (for breakfast)

white pine (for tea time)

If you were tempted to click through to see how to eat a back yard tree, you may have just experienced a bout of curiosity piqued by what Heath & Heath call a "knowledge gap." Or, basically, you clicked through because you knew you didn't know, and it made you want to know.

Using knowledge gaps is one way to make a message stickier (besides adding pine sap, which I can attest is very, very sticky). It causes a person to want to find answers, and the extra effort they expend in doing so helps the final message stick.

The simplest tool for creating knowledge gaps is the question. So the next time you want to write a sticky blog post, just add an opening question. And see who stays for a little bloggy tea.

Pine Needle Tea photo, by L.L. Barkat.


Over at HighCallingBlogs we're reading and discussing Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die. Want to join us? :) Also, feel free to leave your link here...

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Blogger Laura said...

You are always so good to do your homework! This post is a perfect illustration of gap theory. And now I am remembering all of the sassafras leaves I ate as a kid. Tastes like licorice, you know.

11:46 AM  
Blogger Maureen said...

I was curious enough to check out the recipe for white pine tea but am not curious enough to want to try it. I do have my limits.

12:33 PM  
Anonymous Sandra Heska King said...

You got my attention!

1:02 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

I am not reading the book this time, but Laura's post and yours are so informative and so interesting. As I told Laura, I do love a mystery. It is just fun to try to figure out those things I don't know - to have to dig deep for understanding.
A good mystery story, the Bible - I think they use this idea very well!

3:01 PM  
Anonymous Melissa | Madabella: made beautiful said...

Oh...so good!!! I really think my husband would drink this...me, not sure yet! Haha!

So, man oh man, I should have added a question to my blog post today, because there's a SUPRISE inside!

Will have to make a note to self next time...;)

5:09 PM  
Blogger Melissa_Rae said...

You caught me! I definitely need to incorporate this more in my writing. It makes it so interesting. :)

And please don't tell my husband about eating things from the backyard. I already have a difficult time keeping him from eating the landscaping at his work.

12:40 AM  
Anonymous Monica Sharman said...

I thought of cinnamon, first thing!
Great photo.

12:53 AM  

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