What does 'to get nowhere fast' mean and why 'Unfortunately'?

A quick course in how to get nowhere fast on social media. Unfortunately, I've seen them all:

source: https://www.artbusiness.com/artists-how-to-hex-your-online-profile.html

  • 2
    "To get nowhere fast" is an idiom that means to expend a lot of energy without achieving anything worthwhile.
    – Robusto
    Commented Dec 5, 2018 at 19:56
  • To get nowhere is to fail to achieve anything or to make progress; adding "fast" intensifies the degree of failure. Commented Dec 5, 2018 at 21:16

2 Answers 2


"To get nowhere fast" is an idiom meaning "to be unsuccessful or to fail to make progress."

The author writes "unfortunately" before a list of unsuccessful social media strategies to say that it is unfortunate that these are so common.


To get nowhere means to not succeed, to fail in one's attempts.

We got nowhere trying to convince them to delay the production release.

To get nowhere fast means to fail quickly. You don't have to wait long to find out that your efforts have been fruitless. It's often a way of giving advice to someone; it's as if to say "That path leads directly to failure" or "That path will soon lead to failure".

You can advertise on Google all you want, but if your website is shite, you'll get nowhere fast.

  • If we are "going nowhere fast" that can mean the situation is deteriorating rapidly. Commented Dec 5, 2018 at 22:46
  • @MichaelHarvey Yes, but get and going mean different things. And now it's dinnertime and I need to get going.
    – TimR
    Commented Dec 5, 2018 at 23:58

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