Many blog writers rely on stale ‘top ten’ articles to draw in readers, writing out a few words and filling out the rest of the article with a list of their top choices. While this seems like a good idea to gain readership you will find that many top ten articles are quite padded out with items. You will perhaps get an immediate response to writing top ten articles but if you are relying on only these types of articles you will find your writing will start to make your site or blog very repetitive.
Alternatives to Top Ten Articles
You do not have to include any certain number of items in a top picks type article and this type of article stops you from having to choose inferior items to place within your article. Think about your favourite books. Do you have a top ten? Despite the amount I read myself I would probably limit mine to five or so novels and this would make an article on “My Best Book Choices” all the more readable and memorable. The more you condense your top picks the better the items listed in your articles are.
Another way to stand out from the crowd is to concentrate on the ‘worst’ rather than the best of what you are reviewing. Why would people want to see the worst of something? Well, because it offers them insight into what not to buy, read or watch. Something like car reviews are perfect for this type of article writing and allow the reader to limit what they are looking for by eliminating certain products or even websites.
The easiest way to avoid doing a generic ‘top ten’ is to not rate anything at all but instead have an open discussion on what you are reviewing. If you were discussing using social networking sites you would not rank sites like Twitter and Face-book according to their worth. Instead you would discuss what their main positives and negatives are allowing the readers to decide for themselves. There is never a reason to go comparing apples and oranges as the saying goes.
Your Readers Have Brains!
Always remember that your readers have brains and are more than capable of making decisions for themselves. While you can recommend certain products or services, without facts, your readers will not just ‘take your word for it’. These people are not your friends and they will need evidence to back up what you are saying when ranking within an article.
Yes, by all means write top ten articles, however, be aware that it must be an informative and insightful list with lots of information to back it up. Writing this style of article can help people new to writing ‘flesh out’ their ideas a little better and break their words up into proper sections. The trick is to not get too carried away with the practice.
Be Different. Be Noticed.
So mix up your articles and do not be confined with a single structure especially if you are relying on your own writing to gain readership for a personal website or blog. There are hundred of websites that already cater to ‘top ten’ style articles and so you would be writing for an already worn out format. Leave the top tens to David Letterman and write your reviews with style, facts and a dash of your own opinion.