Sure, the technique of using lists in ads, articles, and blog posts can be overdone. Still, there’s no denying – numbers are attention grabbers. When My Yahoo browser served up the titles "40 Fantastic Uses For Baking Soda" and "46 Smart Uses For Salt" – hey, I just had to know if this stuff was for real!
It was. Melissa Breyer’s Care2 Green blog contained a wealth of information about how baking soda makes a great stand-in for expensive personal care, cleaning, and deodorizing products.
Breyer’s post demystified her topic, explaining that sodium bicarbonate regulates PH, keeping a substance neither too acidic nor too alkaline. How can you demystify YOUR services and products so that online readers feel they understand how the "magic" happens?
Breyer goes on through the full 40 "did-you-know"s about how baking soda is handy for just about everything you can think of (but never did), from helping your hair, to polishing silverware, to cleaning teapots, putting out fires. and sanitizing the septic system. What unusual applications for YOUR product can you use to capture readers’ interest?
Notwithstanding the number 46 in the title "46 Smart Uses for Salt", according to the Salt Institute, I learned to my amazement, there are more than 14,000 ways to use salt (now I was really curious!). Some that inspired an "I didn’t know that!" from me included:
- Preventing cake icing crystals
- Treating poison ivy
- Deterring ants
- Making candles drip-proof
- Brightening the color of curtains
As a professional ghost blogger and blogging trainer, I think using numbers in blog posts is less about grabbing attention with a catchy title, and more about demonstrating ways in which your product, your service, and your expertise are useful, perhaps in unexpected ways.
So go ahead – count those ways in your blog!