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Having Problems Writing Bullet Points? Try These Tips

Posted by on 21st Jun 2013 | 4 comments

Hey there! Last week we talked about how to create a blog post body that engages  readers. If you’ve read it then you know that one of the things I mentioned there is how bullets can make your post more engaging.

Today, we’re going to expound on that. We’ll discuss how writing bullet points should be done. But if you haven’t read last week’s post yet, then check it out first in this link.

Before we begin, what are bullets and what are they good for?

3d small people-wrenchBullets are used to bring attention to important information in a document. These are very useful in helping readers easily find the key  info and crucial details they need to remember. Bullets help readers scan documents very easily.

These are among the useful tools bloggers can use to make their posts better.

So why are bullets great for blog posts? They:

  • make it easy to scan articles
  • make it easy to find key information
  • make it easy to understand the topic

Writing bullet points can improve your posts but only when they are used the right way. The last thing you need is to put bullet points without a plan. Being reckless can affect the way your blog post is received by readers.

Remember that writing bullet points require some strategy. You just can’t put bullets when you want to. There are several things you have to bear in mind to make sure that your post doesn’t lose its appeal.

Here are some guidelines in writing bullet points:

  • keep them short and simple
  • observe parallelism
  • use phrases instead of sentences
  • hook your readers
  • make sure they are symmetrical (one line, two lines, etc.)

I’m sure you want to know more, so let’s break these down.

Keep them short and simple. It’s very simple. Bullet points are designed to help readers scan articles quickly. Readers want to get the gist of an article or blog post even without reading the entire document. Bullet points will help them do that.

Writing bullet points this way will make things easy for both writers and readers.

Observe parallelism. This means your bullet points have to be identical in structure and context. They have to be uniform. If you’ve started writing bullet points that begin with a verb, then every item on the list should begin with a verb. Notice how the bullet points above all begin with a verb.

Use phrases instead of sentences. The whole point of using bullets is to keep everything concise. You don’t have to write sentences because they’ll complicate things. Brevity is an important quality for bullet points.

Hook your readers. Bullet points are like mini-headlines. They need to hook readers and capture their interest. In most blog posts (or articles), bullet points are further explained later in the document. If readers aren’t captured by the bullet points, then they won’t bother reading further.

Make sure they are symmetrical. This is symmetrical to parallelism. If your first bullet point is just one line, the rest should be too.

So there you have it. These are few guidelines in writing bullet points. This is partly inspired by the Copyblogger post I’ve read on bullets. You might want to check it out, too. It’s really insightful.

 


Irwin creates awesome content for various businesses online. He blogs about writing and other stuff, like Survivor. He also contributes for a lifestyle magazine. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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