Listception – A Top 3 List about Why Lists Are Valuable Marketing Tools

By: David Tile| Founer @ Article-Writing.co
Posted On: April 17, 2014
When looking into blog writing service pricing, there are a number of things to take into account. One is how your content is formatted, and there’s one simple format that can seriously improve your results: the list.
The Late Show does it. Wayne’s World did it. Buzzfeed does it. “Simpsons did it.” All right, that last one is just quoting South Park, but there’s a high chance that the Simpsons did, indeed, do it. Lists are something that everyone and their grandmother’s apple pie have done at one point or another to share tips, ideas and information. According to Heinz Marketing, detractors of lists blame the writers, but “list-related content is just as popular (if not more so) with readers.”

Just Why Are Lists Popular?

Let’s look at the website, TheTopTens. This is a site specifically made for, well, lists. If there’s a list you can’t find on the site, you’re welcome to create one, but the site really does have a list for practically everything.

According to its statistics the site currently has:

  • 39,556 top 10 lists
  • An average of 19.6 items per list
  • 76,158 personal lists created by members who reordered the original top 10 lists to create a list of their own.
  • 774,436 items on the site that can be voted on.
  • 15,205,072 votes cast.
  • 96,342 registered members


And this is just one site that specializes in lists. The numbers speak for themselves – lists are definitely in.

What Makes Lists so Popular?

1. They’re Easy to Read


“Like it or not, low-attention-span readers like to read in chunks,” says Heinz Marketing. Darren Rowse, in an article for Pro Blogger, adds that online readers are “notoriously lazy. A list helps communicate a number of points quickly and easily.”

While it’s true that readers can have low attention spans, there’s another factor that makes an easy-to-read list valuable. According to some statistics, the best posting times for Facebook and Twitter are early afternoon. Where are most people between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.? At work. Yet, somehow, higher traffic occurs at this time. Having a list that’s easy to skim through will appeal to an audience that doesn’t have much time to sit and read something thoroughly.

2. Audiences Can Pick and Choose Which Points they Agree (or Disagree) With


Lists are essentially your opinion written out and numbered. While your audience may not agree with every single point, chances are they’ll agree with something on the list. And if they don’t agree with something it’s a good opportunity to create a discussion.

For example, let’s look at this list of Top Ten movies of 2013 from TheTopTens:

  1. Iron Man 3
  2. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
  3. Despicable Me 2
  4. Man of Steel
  5. Gravity
  6. The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug
  7. Fast & Furious 6
  8. Star Trek: Into Darkness
  9. World War Z
  10. 10.  Monsters University

Now if you look below the list you see add-ins numbered 11 – 100 from others who feel like a different movie should’ve made the list. Where’s the Pacific Rim love? How did 12 Years a Slave not make the list? The Conjuring was a perfectly creepy movie. No Captain Phillips or The Wolf of Wall Street — how can this be? By sharing this top 10 list it opened the door for discussion, keeping the conversation going and getting the list several hits.

3. They’re More Approachable


Lists feel more open to interpretation. It doesn’t feel like the end all, be all opinion on a subject. With a list, there’s several points being made, and there’s this feeling of, “Why stop at five? Why not 10?” Someone lists off five reasons behind something and it gets you thinking, “There can’t be just five, right? There’s more to it than that.” And, usually, there is.

Or you question, “Why those five? Why not these five instead?” Lists get you thinking about the topic and inspire you to come up with opinions of your own. “Sure Iron Man 3 is good,” you say, “but is it the best movie of 2013?” Since lists are more approachable, they’re easily sharable, a key factor in social media and marketing. It’s easy to share a list and add your own two cents about it. So think about lists the next time you’re looking into blog writing service pricing.

The ultimate goal of content marketing is offering your target audience information and materials that will engage them and motivate them to choose your business. 

Seems easy, right? 

Often, companies will simply share general content to please everyone. But let’s be honest: you can’t win them all. And that’s okay! 

Rather than throwing a line and hoping the fish will bite, create Thought Leadership content strategically catered to your target market. Consider the people who would genuinely need or care about what your business offers, rather than wasting time, effort, and resources on creating general, unfocused content. Successful content marketing involves promoting your products and services to the people interested in the subject matter, who will read the content, click on your company website, and take action. 

As an executive of an organization, you are a valuable piece of the brand. Consumers want to know about the human presence leading companies, in order to understand more about the company’s values and goals. 

Take advantage of your position as an industry expert and share extra content to attract more attention to yourself as an industry leader and your company. Your quality content will build your reputation as a reliable voice to earn your consumer’s trust. However, if it’s not focused on your target audience, you won’t earn many conversions from your content. 

Consider these techniques to guide your Thought Leadership content so it can expand and strengthen your loyal consumer following:

  • Identify your target audience by reviewing your current consumer data and identifying who is investing in your business or reacting to your thought leadership materials so far. Look for trends to find why these people are interested and if others like them haven’t been reached yet. 
  • Conduct customer research to learn how they will respond to your thought leadership content. Request participation in surveys, polls, social media comments, and more to learn about your existing impression on your audience and how you can improve your platform. 
  • Create target audience character profiles. Identify their interests, demographics, pain points, needs, and desires, and write to them.
  • Find where your current and potential audience is active online.  Catch their attention by being active and sharing your content marketing materials on these platforms.
  • Pull inspiration from other Thought Leader examples. Research other executives within your field who implement successful content marketing through their personal platforms. Learn what qualities make their content attractive and why readers respond to it positively. These examples can offer a base for you to visualize what you want to achieve. 
  • Recognize your strengths as a Thought Leader. Often, leaders aren’t necessarily aware of the unique talents that give them an advantage in their industry until asked. Reflect on what topics you know best and how to input your insights to humanize your materials, make them original and more engaging for your audience. 


Case Study: How Strategic Content Marketing Can Broaden Your Audience

In our client strategy calls, our team will interview our expert clients to learn about their industry expertise and find out what’s meaningful to them, their business, and then identify who we believe to be their target audience. We use these insights to inspire our content subject matter and tone to create impactful content for their current and potential consumers.

Dr. Desai’s COVID PreCheck App Content Marketing

For example, our client, Dr. Nitin Desai, approached our strategy team to create content to promote his COVID Pre-Check app. His innovative software is intended to help employers ensure their employees who enter the office are COVID-free, providing a safe environment by eliminating the chance of spread. 

Our team of strategists recognized that with Dr. Desai’s thorough professional knowledge around the COVID-19 virus, he had the potential to become a reliable voice in a culture of people seeking answers. We created content for Dr. Desai that focused on sharing COVID-related insights to reach a wider audience, which has been a successful mission. Our thoroughly planned content reflected his industry expertise, which brought him attention from various media outlets and publications, including Forbes

By reaching out to our professional content marketing team, Dr. Desai achieved his goal of promoting his groundbreaking app, while also positioning himself as an authoritative voice in his field. Our team learned about his voice, discovered what was meaningful to him and his target audience, and optimized this to create focused, engaging content that broadened his consumer scope. 

Ready to Invest In Your Article-Writing.co Thought Leadership Package? 

At Article-Writing.co, we understand that you have a lot on your plate. Let us share your voice on your behalf, so you don’t need to add more time to your busy schedule to write your own content marketing. Our strategists and creators will develop a plan to create engaging materials to represent your Thought Leader brand through your own specialized Thought Leadership Package

Let us help you strengthen and broaden your consumer base for continued professional success. Book a call today.