I started playing Wordle 30 days ago, and it has renewed my faith in humanity.
Each day, Wordle gives the world a 5-letter word. It’s a secret code that players share and also protect so as not to spoil the fun for others.
Wordle demonstrates the power of simplicity and the seven key ingredients of viral success in the digital world:
- Easy to use and easy to understand. The rules are simple. The interface is unassuming—no bells, whistles, or ads. The only complexity lies in solving the puzzle.
- Accessible by a wide audience. In my family we have 3 generations playing Wordle daily. The common appeal across generations is unique and unifying.
- Has a shared purpose. The fact that we all get the same word creates a shared purpose. We are all working on the same end goal, which creates common ground.
- Social friendly. The results can be shared with friends on social media, making it a fun way to connect, compete, and engage with peers.
- Feels exclusive or urgent. You only get one word a day, which makes you want more. With limited opportunity to play, each release is coveted and awaited with anticipation.
- Provides instant results. You get results instantly with a visual summary of your track record. Humans love seeing their progress and performance.
- Provides just the facts. How many opportunities have you had recently to share something on social media that was free from bias, speculation, and misinformation? Wordle is the exception. We all get the same version, the same rules, with the same set of facts.
Wordle is the great unifier. With the recent acquisition by the New York Times, I sincerely hope they keep its singular simplicity intact. Its simplicity is also its brilliance and just what we all needed in this moment.