Original content may be king, but the queen has to be aggregation.
Lists, compilations, and roundups of other resources are found on the home page of Digg, Reddit, and just about any other influential site every single day. Why? Because there’s a lot of value in sorting the wheat from the chaff (so to speak). It helps people save time and organize quality resources.
A quality top 10, top 43, or 100 great [fill in the blank] ‘s types of posts and articles receive lots of attention and are probably one of the most bookmarked types of content online.
Here are some of my favorite examples of well executed aggregate posts:
- 83 Beautiful WordPress Themes You (Probably) Haven’t Seen
3,454 del.icio.us bookmarks
- TOP 30 WordPress Plugins in Blogosphere
1,035 del.icio.us bookmarks
- Downloadable AJAX Galleries, Slideshows and Effects
2,621 del.icio.us bookmarks
- MiniAjax.com / A showroom of nice looking simple downloadable DHTML and AJAX scripts
7,891 del.icio.us bookmarks!
Aggregation has been around for a long time. Think of your local newspaper’s “Best of the best restaurants” issues or “Newsweek’s Top 100 Colleges” issue. Even Digg itself is an aggregator (with a little more user interaction). Google has built a multi-billion dollar empire around the business of aggregation.
Want a tip on how to write a great blog post with minimal effort? Go to del.icio.us, search by keyword add “list” (ex: “stock+photos+list”), find the most bookmarked posts & create an aggregate post with what you find at those websites. Title the post “10 Little Known Websites for Free Stock Photos” (or something similar) and you just might have the next Digg front-page-worthy post.
So next time you want to create a piece of compelling content but are feeling uncreative, compile a useful list of existing resources. Can’t Create? Aggregate!