- Choose an arbitrary number of items, e.g. 7
- Combine this with a suitable noun that the number will describe, e.g. steps, tips, ways, methods etc
- Make sure you put this combination at the start of your article’s title to entice people to read your post. The number draws people in with the promise of a finite solution, neatly packaged and ready for consumption.
- Offering some kind of vague promise helps, e.g. the use of words like “guarantee” or “master”. Alternatively, imply that superior beings to your readers already know this information, e.g. “The 4 Things That Brilliant People During Breakfast”. In this way you imply that you are letting your readers in on a magical secret they can never otherwise know. To reach the ultimate low, suggest that someone no longer with us would have done this, e.g. Steve Jobs.
- Choose a random picture to head the article up. This doesn’t have to be relevant but it does have to be high quality. Be careful not to use something owned by someone else (I use public domain images from Pixabay). Abstract pictures like pieces on a chess board will have your readers wondering about the significance or trying to count the pieces to see if they correspond to the arbitrary number in the title.
- Don’t worry if you can’t actually hit the number of items you promised in the title, because by then people will already have clicked through to your site. And traffic is all that matters, right?
Come on people, can we get some decent content and stop all this nonsense?