Our top ten lists are one of our most popular features – yet they’re just a list with photos! So what makes them so entertaining?

It’s all about the simple interaction of image and words. An image can give more detail to a concept or it can contradict the words and make it funny. The list can be used to make people laugh like the You know you work in a digital marketing team when... list, it could give advice like the ‘6 essential things to get right BEFORE your content goes viral‘ list, or it could get people thinking about the subject matter like Our Top 5 Björk Songs (the Definitive List).

How you create your list will depend on the way you think and learn. If you’re a visual learner you’ll have images in mind, if you prefer expressing yourself with words more you’ll probably write the list items first.

Either way works – although if you do a quick image search you might find the perfect image that sums it up and you can write words around that.

Your title is THE most important part of the list!

A funny or intriguing title will mean more people click on your list and read it. Check out this list on the science of writing compelling headlines to get more traffic to your list.

Your number one aim is for people to look through ALL of your list and like it enough to share it with their friends. Some useful tips for this are:

  • Less is more – A picture paints a thousand words so find the right image for each point rather than writing lots of text.
  • Start strong – Start with a good point or image that grabs the user’s attention and makes them want to read more.
  • Don’t pad a list out – Lists with less items often do well as people are curious to know why there are fewer items. Each item should add something significant to the list.
  • Finish with a bang – Your last item should help the user decide to share your list. Riddles are really easy to share or to insert into a blog. Getting your list shared will massively increase your audience or go ‘viral’.
  • Edit – When you’ve finished the list, check through it and see if it can be improved. Is there a funny angle you missed? Can you use less words to say the same thing?

When you’re finished you have just one thing left to do. Share it! Use the Riddle share buttons to put your list on social media and your blog. Encourage your friends to pass it on. You’ll be amazed at how popular a list can become if it’s featured on a blog or starts a conversation on Facebook!

Start your list now and get a boost in your traffic today. It’s free to use.