0

I'm looking for a powerful way to describe the fact that -after performing a certain activity- there are only two possible outcomes:

1) It's a great success (only in 20% of cases)

2) It's of no or little use and can even do you some harm (in 80% of cases)

I would like to use this description to convince people that they should do everything they can to ensure their efforts result in outcome number 1.

Context:

I would like to use this in the context of writing online content: 20% of content generates 90% of engagement. So if you are going to create an online publication, you'd better give it some serious attention so it ends up at the right side/staple that actually generates engagement.

I've considered:

Your work will either end up at the 20% 'staple' that does it all or at the 80% 'staple' that does you no good at all.

Yet, it feels like that description lacks power and elegance.

I'm open to phrases, expressions, idioms and metaphors. Ideally, it creates a feeling of urgency and it is easy to understand/picture for almost any reader.


I've found this other topic, but I don't think it's a duplicate. Although the topic starter is also asking for an idiom with high contrast in possible outcomes, my outcome number 2 is not negative per definition: it can be slightly positive. Therefore, the suggestions 'going all in' (where you lose it all), 'double-edged sword' and 'high risk/high reward' don't cover it.

2
  • We need more context, but I've attempted to give you an answer below.
    – David M
    Oct 21, 2019 at 1:27
  • 1
    Thank you @DavidM. I've added the context in which I would like to use it. Does this help for coming up with suggestions?
    – RWB
    Oct 23, 2019 at 3:59

1 Answer 1

1

Thank you for your edit. This paragraph will better fit the context you've provided.

Remember, the top 20% of your content drives 90% of the interest in your site. The other 80%, at best generates little interest and, at worst drives interest away. So, always strive to be writing that 20%, and in the end all of your content will be better for it.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.