If you have minimal contact with content on the Internet, for sure already bumped into one of those posts “9 tips when buying a car,” “15 ways to make cake without using flour”, “21 ways to attract more customers to your business “etc.
These posts, which many call the list of posts, are one of the most widespread formats in Digital Marketing . We can say, to exhaustion.
So it may seem that using this format is outdated, since, in a way, it is already saturated formula.
But is not it worth investing in the list of posts when we want to generate results? After all, they can be very efficient to generate traffic and Leads. Today we will show why.
If you think about it, lists tend to facilitate the user’s reading. In a context in which people are increasingly rush to absorb the information by which interested, publish a list makes your text becomes more scannable, especially if you somehow highlight each item on the list. Thus, the reader can identify and skip that information that does not judge as necessary and go straight to what interests him.
See more about scannable content in post 8 tips to make your content more scannable .
Just as the list of posts are easier to read than run texts, they also facilitate the writing, since, by listing as a list the points you want to work in the article, you will already creating a structure that facilitates development of ideas.
In addition, this format encourages the writer to go “to the point” and avoids it to go up losing the subject in the text, which is very common, especially in bulky contents. Recalling that the list format need not be published just like post: you can also work this way in eBooks, webinars ( to list certain points that are covered along the transmission), podcasts, infographics etc.
To learn how to write more easily content, read these posts: 7 tips for writing a post from scratch and how to lose the fear of writing and start producing content .
Once the list of posts are easy to read, it is more likely that this type of content is consumed by more people, which in turn, makes it also easier to be shared, especially in social networks .
The lists also have another feature that makes have the potential to viralized: generally, they have a language that mixes information with humor. Think about it: a post titled “5 ways to justify their procrastination” does not sound more fun than “why we often justify our procrastination”?
To understand a little more about what has the potential to viralized in Digital Marketing, read our post about viral marketing.
The fact that you select a theme, decide to write about it and detail it in various topics gives the impression to your website visitors that you really understand about what you’re talking about.
Of course, that this impression is confirmed, you need to write a quality text, but getting put it in a format that helps detail it helps it.
And you can have a direct impact on sales: If your visitors believe that you are expert in your business or even in your niche, people will realize that you are able to solve their problem with your solution, and the chances that they buy from you increase.
To learn how to become authority, read this post with cases of companies that have set up blogs to build their authority on the market .
Of course, even if you make a quality and full content, you most likely will make some points out, it is virtually impossible to cover an entire issue in a single material.
So you can take your list and suggest other content you have to supplement that subject. So you do not have the obligation to produce an endless material that addresses everything. As you may have noticed, we’re doing it in this post.
One of the reasons why we should use lists of posts is that there are many studies that indicate that the human being like lists and numbers.
One, for example, performed by the company Conductor few years ago, shows that titles that have numbers are preferred people – no less than 71% of respondents answered that.
This is explained in part by the theory of hemispheric functional specialization , which states that our brain has different areas that specialize in different functions. Because of this, our cognitive and neuropsychological preferences lists and numbers is a result of the organization of our brain.
But it serves any number? Yes, but some may have more results than others. This is shown by an analysis by Ok Dork and Buzzsumo, which analyzed 100 million items and found that the most popular lists used with the following numbers (in this order): 10, 23, 16 and 24.
When I tell you I have three things to say, you’ve probably think about how long it takes to hear what I have to say. The same applies to the lists.
Once the person reads the number, she already has an idea of the amount of content that will find and how long it will take to consume that content. This decreases the chances of your reader get frustrated with what you are offering, which can help generate a better experience on the user.
At the same time, lists make people stay wondering what, after all, are those “3 content ideas that generate many conversions” or “6 places you can not fail to know in Paris.”
This stirs their curiosity and, consequently, makes them have more desire to consume your content.
There are several aspects of lists that can be considered ideal for SEO (Search Engine Optimization or Search Engine Optimization) .
Among the main, we can mention the fact that lists help create a rich text headings and subheadings (H1, H2, H3 etc.), create an organization that contributes to the user experience, generate internal links. All this can help you to rank better in search engines.
You want to know everything about SEO? Then read our eBook The Complete Guide to SEO .
Lists are a good format to talk about complex issues. This is because they communicate the best ideas, go straight to the point and are lighter.
Generate lists a number of topics, which you can use sequentially and logic, helping to set up a framework that facilitates understanding. Therefore, it is worth choosing this format for step by step and tutorials.
See, for example, this post that explains how to make an infographic in 6 simple steps .
As we have said earlier, it is very difficult for a single content exhaust a subject at once. So even if your list is delving into some topics, you may address some items more superficially.
But this is not necessarily bad. You can, as we have suggested, link to other content you have already produced on the subject. Or, if you have not any material on what has been discussed, you can create it, and then link the two content, also contributing to the SEO of the two.
We know that content created directly to social networks such as direct postings on LinkedIn, Facebook or Instagram, should be shorter, for generating the desired engagement.
So you can use your list and turn it on content for social networks. You can, for example, pick up each of the numbers and create a different posting based on it. But never forget to adapt the content to the medium you are using.
Lists are a natural way to encourage readers to leave their views and engage in their content. How often generate controversy, people are tempted to say what they think about that content, whether you agree, disagree or make suggestions.
So use this natural potential of this format and enjoy the final list to ask readers to write what they think about it or suggest other topics you may have forgotten. This may even be the basis for the creation of new content.
When you present people choices of things with which they can identify, they will want to understand why they identify with that option.
The situation gets even better when using the word “you” when addressing his readers, as this is a strong word – people love it when they saw the focus of attention.
An example is this our post Customization: 5 tips for you to differentiate and sell more . In this case, it is very likely that you click on this post because it believes are tips that you can do yourself – that is, you identify with what is proposed for the title.
Of course this will depend on the quality of your list, but writing about a particular subject with a list format pruning to make the approach becomes more comprehensive.
This is because, by dividing it into topics and number them, it becomes easier to understand if you’re forgetting something, and if so, create an extra topic to address what is missing.
And take the time to make a really comprehensive and great list, as people tend to believe they are learning more the longer the list number.
When you want to convince someone of something, what do you do? You probably lists a number of arguments that reinforce their point of view, right?
Similarly, use lists can help you persuade people about your idea, since you will present in numbers, some reasons to defend what you’re talking about. An example: three metrics that prove the value of Digital Marketing to the board .
As we have seen, there are several reasons why you should use lists as one of its content format. They help generate clicks, engagement, sharing, organic traffic, conversions, comments, etc.
But lists are not a magic formula: more important than the format, is that your content quality. Bet on something that is really interesting to your target audience and not frustrate the expectations of his audience. Thus, you will always input to create content in various formats, and will generate a nice income for your business.
For now using lists across your Content Marketing strategy, among other things similar to this post, read here The Definitive Guide Content Marketing .