The Ultimate Listicle to Writing Listicles… On Any Budget


Vintage Numbered List by avgeeks

These days you can’t turn a corner on the internet without running into a listicle. Part list, part article, these highly effective marketing tools are the perfect way to deliver content that is digestible, fun, and keeps people reading. 

If your headline’s done its job, it’s brought people in. But continued engagement falls on your visuals. Lucky for you, a can’t-wait-read-the-next-item listicle is possible on every budget.


1. Use Reaction Gifs


Beyonce Reaction by Reuters

There isn’t any emotion in the world that can’t be expressed in a reaction gif. So go ahead, make your readers say “I feel you.” 

Make It ($$$): Unlimited budget? Set up a shoot and get some celebrity reactions. Or hire an animal trainer to wrangle some cats in costumes

Adapt It ($$): Already got content from another project? Create your own animated gifs using Adobe Photoshop.

Buy It ($): Find some fun stock reactions to own forever and ever. Like these shocked reactions, these happy ones, or these sad ones.


2. Tell Your Story with Infographics

Healthcare Infographic by elenabsl

Infographics are an easy way to make complicated (and sometimes boring) topics more fun.

Make It ($$$): Lots of brands have created ownable infographics to make everyone jealous. (Like the famous Whiteboard campaign The Martin Agency created for UPS.) And if you’ve got the budget, this is a great way to tell a visual story.

Adapt It ($$): Start with a pack of elements like these animated shapes or this fire motion graphics pack and add your own facts and figures.

Buy It ($): Yes, even infographics come pre-made. So whether you’re telling a story about banking, business, or brainstorming, there’s something for everyone.


3. Say It With A Quote

Never Give Up Neon by houbacze

If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then a visual of a quote is worth 1,000 words plus the number of words in the quote.

Make It ($$$): Track down the person who wrote “Live. Laugh. Love.” and commission your own brand-related inspirational quote.

Adapt It ($$): Using a free DIY (design-it-yourself) site like Canva, create your own quotes in your brand’s color and style. Or customize videos with text, music, or your logo using Pond5’s Social Studio

Buy It ($): Motivate your audience with stock quotes they’ll want to keep sharing. Whether you want them to think positive, build confidence, or stay weird, they’ll remember exactly what needs to be done.


4. Spice Up Your Listicle with Video

Disco Puppy by dubassy

Bring your list to life with some video footage. Remember, the stranger, the better for getting people’s attention.

Make It ($$$): Gather the strangest possible things in one room and hold a shoot to capture that perfect video footage.

Adapt It ($$): Already creating content for a larger project? Think ahead and add a few extra shots you can use for your listicle. 

Buy It ($): Not quite sure what you’re looking for? We’ve created this collection of attention-getting videos to get you started. 


5. Have Fun and Stay At The Surface

Humpback Whale by TheEngineer

Your readers have chosen this listicle because they don’t want to dive too deep into your topic of choice. So keep it broad, keep it fun, and keep it engaging!