5 Ways to Get your Listicle Noticed
Listicle?? What is a listicle – and, is that even a word? Yes, listicle is a term used in journalism and blogging, which “is a short form of writing that uses a list as its thematic structure, but is fleshed out with sufficient content to be published as an article.” Our recent blogs have talked about how to use your own blog posts to keep content fresh on your website and social media posts while also driving potential customers to your website and boosting your SEO. One of the increasingly popular ways to accomplish that is to write using the “listicle.” Once you know what they are, you’ll realize they’re everywhere!
Features of a listicle:
- Uses a cardinal number (the numbers we use to count) - ideally in the title and in subheadings.
- Ranked listicles imply some subjective judgment (as in “best of,” “top 20,” “most important,” etc.) and are often presented in “countdown” order with the last one being the “Number One” item.
- The writing style means it’s easier and faster to write because the writing doesn’t need to create a narrative.
- Lends itself to “recycling” content – by using individual points as material for social media posts or using each point and developing further into a more in-depth article.
5 Ways to Get YOUR Listicle Read:
Listicles need an introduction and a conclusion, just like any other piece of writing. An intro of three or four sentences is enough to grab your reader’s attention and explain what the post is about. One of the great things about a listicle post is that the reader knows what’s ahead because the whole organization of the article is around a specified number of points. And, if you include that number in the title, all the better. Psychologists tell us that our brains love this type of organization. Cover the content and then conclude with a great closing paragraph, preferably with a suggestion for action. In case you wondered, odd-numbered lists seem to perform better than even numbered lists.
Almost any article can be written as a listicle, but they’re best used for tips and tricks, where the reader could easily be overloaded with information, and when you really need people to read all the way to the end. If your listicle includes ranking – and not just a thematic or random listing of points – remember that this implies some level of judgment. You’ll also need to decide whether to put your “Number One” item first or last.
3. Keyword sandwiches
Be sure to include keywords in all the “key” places in the listicle. The opening paragraph will include them – and ideally at least some of them will appear in the title. Be sure to circle around and use them in your closing paragraph and any concluding call to action. This means that the bulk of the content is “sandwiched” between the use of keywords.
We’ve already talked about the fact that listicles tend to engage readers more effectively than blog posts which are strictly narrative. This can happen even before your reader gets to the actual content by drawing them in through the title or headline. Readers tend to prefer titles with a number. Using a numbered list also tends to keep your reader engaged until the end, simply because they know when the end will be.
Because the whole idea of a listicle is that it can deliver a lot of content quickly, keep things streamlined. Keep in mind the idea that “less is more,” and especially keep your subheadings brief. You can always go back and develop individual subheadings into follow-up future blog posts. Usually, one paragraph is enough content under each point, and subheadings should only be a few words or a short phrase.
A listicle is “one of the most popular formats for creating a stellar, SEO based, blog article that will get clicks, get you noticed and keep people reading to the end.” If you’d like help with blog writing – listicles and more – we offer affordable, customized content writing solutions including blog articles, social media articles, and posts, press releases and more. Contact us today for pricing or to see examples.
Patel N. Love ‘em or hate ‘em: 9 interesting facts about list posts. HubSpot.com. Updated 28 Aug 2017 [accessed 2 Jul 2019]. https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/list-posts-facts
Vandette K. 7 Reasons the listicle is your best friend and how to write them. KayWritesStuff.com [blog]. 7 Jul 2017 [accessed 2 Jul 2019]. https://kaywritesstuff.com/7-reasons-the-listicle-is-your-best-friend-and-how-to-write-them/
Wikipedia.org. Listicle. Last edited 16 Sep 2018 [accessed 2 Jul 2019}. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Listicle