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Write a List – Rediscover Your Blogging Groove Day 1

Posted By Darren Rowse 17th of July 2007 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 89

Rediscover-Blogging-Groove--1Today’s task in the Rediscover Your Blogging Groove project is to write a list post.

I find that one of the easiest ways to write a blog post is to write a list.

  1. Lists are Scannable
  2. Lists keep Posts succinct
  3. Lists look ‘neat’
  4. Lists area easy to link to
  5. Lists can be a comprehensive to tackle a topic
  6. Lists can be persuasive
  7. Lists add to the ease of writing
  8. Lists can start memes and go viral

The above reasons for writing lists was taken from – 8 Reasons why Lists are Good for Getting Traffic to your blog

There are a few different types of ‘list posts’.

1. Simple Lists – the above post (8 Reasons Why Lists are Good….) is a fairly simple list post.

  • There’s a small introduction to the topic (A couple of sentences)
  • There’s a short summary at the end (a paragraph).
  • The points are all short and quite succinct
  • The list makes up the majority of the post and really speaks for itself.

Simple lists are often shorter, sharper and to the point. They can be quite powerful and make a real impact.

2. Longer List Posts – the majority of list posts that I write are slightly more complex lists. I like to introduce a topic, explore a need, give some examples and then launch into a list.

Once I start the list itself I then like to expand upon each point along the way. This suits my style which is a little more long winded.

A few examples of my own include Wedding Photography – 21 Tips for Amateur Wedding Photographers and How to Take Great Group Photos.

In actual fact these sorts of posts border on being more essay like – but are broken up and formatted with headings for each point to make them a little more digestible and scannable to readers.

3. Lists as Parts of Posts – lists can also be used within posts quite effectively.

These lists might help to make one of numerous points along the way or there may even be multiples lists within the whole post (like this one).

Be a little careful not to overwhelm readers with too many lists and sublists (lists within lists can be confusing). But don’t feel that a list needs to be the only thing within your post. If you’re looking at an example of this type of post – you’re reading one. This post has numerous small lists in it with other commentary between them.

OK – so enough theorizing about list posts – it’s time to go and write one. The hardest part is probably going to be picking a topic to write your list about. A few ideas (and another list):

  • 10 Ways to Use a….
  • The most common mistakes….
  • How to be an effective….
  • The most popular 17…..
  • Reasons why I love (or hate)….
  • The most beautiful (ugly, fascinating, crazy)….
  • 5 Steps to achieving….

If you want more examples of list posts check out the Lists Group Writing Project which has over 300 examples of list posts.

Go write a list. Post it and come back here to share a link to it in comments below so we can see what you came up with.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.