Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Top Ten Tips for Creating Top Ten Tips Lists

How could I not write the list that tells you how to write your lists? 

Read on to find my top ten tips on writing top ten tips lists....

1. Title your post "Top Ten Tips on _____"
This one's obvious. So readers know what they're getting into. Also, people search for "top ten tips" so there's a greater likelihood that your article will come up when they do.

2. Bold the main points
Makes 'em stand out. Busy readers can skim and still get the gist of the article. 

3. Lecture a little
If people click on this post they know (or should know) that they'll be getting an earful of advice. Don't start every tip with "In my humble (or not so humble) opinion." But also don't write a post's worth of advice under every main point. It's hard on the eyes and the attention span.

4. Try not to be so dead serious
Always, always avoid the use of words like "always" and never." These are just tips, people, not life-saving instructions. Oh, and a spoonful of humor makes the lecturing go down....

5. Don't accidentally repeat yourself
That's just redundant and annoys readers.

5. Don't accidentally repeat yourself
That's just redundant and annoys readers.

7. Make sure you haven't skipped a number on your list
Otherwise your readers will wonder why they should be listening to your advice when you obviously can't even count.

8. No money-back guarantees
Even if these tips completely changed your life, don't promise that they'll do the same for everyone else. You can insinuate that, yes, but don't outright say it. There may be legal ramifications or something, ya know?

9. You shouldn't not never contradict yourself
If people are looking for advice, they want to know that you're reliable. Nothing says "unreliable" faster than a contradiction.

10. Be fresh, funny, and unique
There are thousands of top ten tips posts out there. If you bring a new perspective, people will be more willing to listen. A little humor never hurts either.

Follow these tips and, well, I can't guarantee it will change your life, but, you know....

Any tips to add to the list? Let me know by commenting!


  1. It is always best to be original. =D

  2. that was silly and informative. perfect!

  3. Wait...This is only nine! AAAAHHH NOW I'M GONNA DIE!!!

  4. Too funny. I like the not being redundant, although I might have been guilty of that a time or two. :-)

  5. I would say that each point should be written as concisely as possible (similar to how you wrote your post). Readers are less likely to read a post that is a half a mile long. Maybe if it's broken down into short paragraphs but if they are in a hurry, they will probably skip over it.

  6. Rissi - yes! With so much repeated information out there, you need to be unique to stand out. :)

    Tara - thanks! Silly and informative was what I was going for. ;)

    Ava (Spidophile) - No, there's ten. Just don't look at the numbers. ;)

    Amber - yep. I'm definitely guilty of that too. :)

    Jessica - thanks! I'm glad you liked it. :)

    Sarah - great point! Conciseness is pretty important. We've got to keep the readers interested! :)

  7. Can I post this as a guest-post on Friday? This is just what I needed to read today - haven't done a top ten list ever but now I think I might just need to come up with one. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your blog!

  8. Becky - I would be honored to have it featured on your blog. :)

    You should write a top ten list. They're a lot of fun!

    1. Up and running - like buttah!

      Thanks and hope you get some more great feedback.

      Happy Friday!



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