Posted on December 17, 2014 by MANA Top 10 Reasons to Stop Writing Blogs with Titles Like “Top 10 Reasons” December 17, 2014, 01:00:47 AM Like all good content marketers, writing is at the core of what we do at MANA. And as somebody who has been blogging consistently for around ten years now, I’ve observed and learned a great deal. I read blogs–all kinds of blogs–voraciously. How else can you improve your own work? And while there are many very good blogs out there, sadly I think there are also more than a few very bad ones. So, as the holiday festivities begin to kick in here at MANA HQ and the kiddies get ready for a visit from the fat man in a red suit, I thought I would take a break from the usual seriousness to espouse on a pet peeve of mine. With tongue firmly in cheek, here goes. Top Ten Reasons to Stop Writing Blogs with Titles Like “Top Ten Reasons…” 1. Lists are Incredibly Boring. And They Drive People with OCD Insane. Is there anything more boring and tiresome than having to read through a list of ten items? I always want to get to the bottom of the list and, when I’m about half way through, I’ve had about all I can stand. Especially if it is a badly written blog. But then my OCD kicks in, and I simply have to get to the bottom of that list. Spare us this test of endurance. Stop writing these stupid blogs. 2. “Top Ten Reasons” According to Whom? Everybody reading your blog knows that, unless you’ve submitted your “Top Ten” list to the Nobel Prize Committee, the Prix Galien judging panel or even the Lower Makefield Township Department of Public Works for evaluation, your list is entirely made up by you. So stop pretending to be all official and stuff, OK chief? 3. The Title Alone Tips People Off That You May be Brain Dead. Don’t give up that easily in exposing your creative deficiencies. It doesn’t take a Rhodes Scholar to come up with a blog title like “Top Ten Reasons Why Your Tomato Plants Keep Getting Aphids.” Put a little more effort into things. And tuck in that shirt while you’re at it. 4. They Demonstrate Ignorance of Content Marketing Best Practices. Guess how many blogs a great content marketer can get out of a “Top Ten” list? That’s right children, at least Ten. Are ten blogs better than one when you are trying to gain visibility, maximize SEO and offer good content to your customers and prospects? 5. Your “Top Ten Reasons” Blog Indicates That a Box of Crackers is More Original Than You Are. Do you want to be like everybody else? Then keep writing “Top Ten” blogs. Because trust me, it’s been done before. If you work in an industry that prides itself on creativity, and you are writing blogs with titles that begin with “Top Ten Reasons…” shame on you. 6. Hackey Hackelton from Hackford Manor Called. He Just Loves Your Blog. Ok, this is really related to number 5 but I really want to squeeze this in, and since it’s my list, I can do what I want. Nothing says “look at me, I’m a broken down hack” better than a “Top Ten” blog. Unless it’s a “Top 20” blog. Hackery is, in my opinion, one of the greatest crimes in writing, movie making or art. The world needs fewer hacks, and more true originals. Be a true original if you can. 7. Meme? What’s in a Meme? “Top Ten” blogs have become a meme. Rickrolling is a meme. I’m too tired and too committed to finishing this list to explain to you what a meme is. Look it up. And then stop doing it. 8. Chances are There are Really Only One or Two Good Reasons on Your List. Look, if you can be judge, jury and ultimate authority over your “Top Ten” list, then I get to decide which reasons are any good and which ones on your list, quite frankly, suck. And in the time I’ve wasted reading “Top Ten” blogs, time I can never get back mind you, I’ve learned that most lists really only contain one or two good reasons. The rest are really just filler, inserted for the specific reason of pissing OCD people like me off and ruining our day. 9. You are Depriving People of Useful Reading Time. If you are like me, your time is limited. I love to read blogs, but I only have a certain window of time each day that I can afford to do it. I need to get on with running a company. So don’t waste people’s valuable time with inane topics when they can be spending that time actually reading and learning useful stuff. 10. I’ve Run Out of Things to List, But I’m Almost Done, and I Need to Keep Going. Right. I’ve made it to number ten, and you’ve hung with me for this long, so I need to keep going. Unfortunately, I’ve got nothing. Sorry. If you have OCD, this would be the point at which your head explodes. Happy holidays everybody!