10 Ways to Improve Your Relationship. 7 Exercises That Will Change Your Life. Top 20 Best Dressed Actresses at the Golden Globes. List posts seem to be the go-to format for many blog posts, and for good reason. Millennials fuel the internet more than any other generation, so we’re also fueling competition between writers seeking readers. So what is it about list posts that catch our fleeting attention? Maybe it’s the fact that we can relate to them. As weird as it seems, our preference for list posts define who we are as a generation and sum up our most prominent traits.
1. We’re overbooked.
Raise your hand if you did five zillion activities as a kid, and were constantly being shuffled from piano lessons to ballet class to your underwater basket weaving seminar. This generation was busy during childhood, and we haven’t slowed down since. Nowadays we’re so booked with school, jobs, and our underwater basket weaving graduate programs we don’t have time to read through entire articles. (Confession time: I’m horrible about this, even with blogs. If it’s more than 1,000 words, more than likely I’m going to skip it unless it’s awesome with a capital A).
2. We’re generic.
In this digital age, I think we’ve traded in some of our personality for convenience. Yes, it’s a heck of a lot easier to send a text rather than a handwritten letter or a phone call, but there’s only so much we can do to make it sound like us (no matter how many emojis you stick in your message!) Same story for list posts. They’re more convenient for readers, but it’s more difficult to gauge the writer’s personality–and isn’t personality what blogging is all about?
3. We like attention.
We invented the word “selfie.” Enough said. And list posts tend to get more attention than their numberless counterparts. Quick test: If you saw two articles side-by-side, and one was “3 Steps to Finding Great Posts” and the other was “How to Find Great Posts,” which would you choose? Be honest!
4. We have short attention spans.
Did you make it to this point in the post? Congratulations! You’ve almost finished a 400-word article! We Millennials are used to getting our information in small chunks. Whether it’s browsing posts, tweets, or headlines, we gather much of our daily knowledge one byte (ha!) at a time. After becoming accustomed to that type of info absorption, it’s tough to go back to reading “real” articles.
I’m sure these aren’t the only similarities between list posts and Millennials, so if you can think of more feel free to comment to your heart’s content.