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Harnessing the Power of Streaks: Insights from Fred Wilson

Hipster sneakers in hand drawn composition.

American businessman, venture capitalist and blogger, Fred Wilson, shared this morning that streaks can be powerful things.

He had a streak of blogging every day for about sixteen years between 2003 and 2019.

I agree. Yesterday wrapped up my eighth consecutive year of running everyday.

So why are streaks so powerful?

Well first and foremost, they establish a goal, to do something every day, and remind you to do it. This technique has been used very effectively in fitness, weight loss, education, and many other sectors long before technology became part of every day life.

But also, the streak becomes more powerful the longer they go on. A streak of a few days can easily be tossed aside. A streak of sixteen years? Not so easily.

During my blogging streak, I woke up every day thinking “what am I going to write about today?” It was a lot of fun, I got an enormous amount of benefit from it, and like many streaks, it became a burden eventually.

A tiny little bit every day or week, whether it be saving money from the paycheck, breaking a sweat or teaching yourself something new every week can be life changers, per Fred,

So when you build your app, says Fred, “build streaks, streak notifications, and streak recognition into it. It will help bring users back, increase frequency, retention, and user value.”

Hard to know exactly Fred’s point mean in regard to building apps but I will take it to mean – in LexBlog’s case – to measure streaks regarding app/product development (could be announcements of work completed for the week) and publishing (the amount published in a week, by who, on what subjects, the number of new authors).

I’ve done blogging streaks of months over my last twenty years, but running everyday will have to do when it comes to years.

No question every running morning has alleviated stress, enabled me to plan out days – including items to blog about that day – and now upping my mileage to run on Fred’s Team (no relation to Fred) at the New York City Marathon to raise money for Ovarian Cancer Research in honor of Jill.