There isn’t one bestseller list

Corey showed me the list of the most popular Wikipedia articles.

It's insane. It makes no sense. It has rock stars, dead dictators and body parts on it.

Huh? If you look at the top music of December, 1971, they're all songs you probably like. Pop music appeals to the masses, and the bestseller list was a fairly accurate indicator of what we were humming. All of us.

The way to understand lists that aren't vintage pop music is this: it isn't one list. It's four or five, mushed together. You have the list of rock acts, overlaid with the list of comic book heroes, etc. There isn't one person (at least I hope not) who's interested in all of these articles.

Seen like that, you can understand it. Sure, Batman gets seen more than the Green Lantern. Sure, Michael Jackson got seen more than ? and the Mysterians. And when you combine the lists, you get a mash.

Brands fall into the trap of combining market desires all the time. They forget that perhaps, just perhaps, the people buying diapers are different from the people buying hats, and putting diapers and hats into one combo pack isn't necessarily smart, even if both are bestsellers in their own right.