How to Write Bullet Points People Actually Want to Read

How to Write Bullet Points People Actually Want to Read

Reader Comments (60)

  1. Okay – fine – you got me! I actually learned something from this. AND, me, the notorious bullet point shooter-downer, I am actually convinced that bullet points might just work in my own website copy, IF I could learn to implement a few of these strategies.

    Now could I just make one teensy little suggestion? Could you make your links open in a new window? I’d like to read the articles you suggest – later. Thank you!

    • Michelle, a counter-suggestion, right-click on the links (you can even do it on a Mac now, yay) and you can choose to open in a new tab or a new window. Some users love opening new windows and some hate it, so we let the reader decide for herself. 🙂

  2. Great post! You kept your promise and taught me something that was factual, gave evidence to support your claim and overdelivered on your promise to deliver great content by providing several more links to other resources supporting the post. Awesome!…but you knew that.

  3. I transcribe, by hand outstanding bullet points to index cards. I have a about 300, mostly harvested from high converting, long form sales letters from Halbert, Pagan, Carlson and the like. There is definitely a rhythm to writing good bullet points. I feel when it when I’m transcribing.

  4. Didn’t realize there was so much to know about using bulleted posts. Each one like a headline – that’s a great point I’ll have to practice.
    Awesome post. Great links – I’ll be coming back to this one over and over.

  5. I love bullet points! There’s a good reason why you see them everywhere. They work! They work even better than storytelling does IMO. Thank you for a post with good, usable insights on them.

  6. Who would have thought writing great bullet points would be
    * So detailed
    * So nuanced, and
    * So powerful
    Thanks for a post that is going to my evernote file:)

  7. I’m so glad I came across this article. I never know what to write when I’m on Twitter or Facebook lol This article makes it seem so easy. All I need to do is remember to write a great heading, and use bullet points. Couldn’t be anymore simple, thanks so much 🙂

  8. Hi Robert,

    Super helpful post.

    I feel the focus on benefits is uber critical. Some bullet into features. Nope. You think in terms of benefits, not features. Focus on points which move people emotionally, to want to learn more, continue reading the post and take your call to action. Enter benefits.

    The can’t be done bullets vibe strongly with me. Any point which makes people think is a powerful point, any point which is a head scratcher. It’s like an instant hook, pulling readers in to learn more, dig more.

    Thanks for sharing your insight Robert.


  9. I know bullet points are great…I’ve always known that. But the proliferation of posts which are nothing but bullet points can be really exhausting. So I’ve tried to stay off that. But with this post, I think I will actually try it now. What I got from this is that it’s actually possible to write a post of bullet points that teaches and informs. Thanks for writing this.

    • I agree, Sharon. Bullet points are like salt: they should be used sparingly, and only when needed. They’re great for quickly explaining certain things, and break up a long page of text nicely; but we shouldn’t forget about things like headings or even simple paragraph breaks — both of which Robert’s article uses well.

      Certainly some great tips here. Thanks for sharing them, Robert!

  10. I love bullet points. They’re like a cherry on a sundae. The sweetest part of the entire package.

    Favorite part: ‘she who makes sense first, wins” I knew women always made the most sense 😉

  11. When you are writing an article or a sales page for your website you have to be able to emphasize the points of your article the best way you can so that people understand what you’re trying to say. You bullet points are going to describe your material to the letter. It is going to tell people what you have to offer them and how are you going to help them. Some people are better at this then others, but it is an acquired skill that anyone can learn if you are willing to put in a little work to get good at it. Being able to write good bullet points will assist you in many ways if you plan on marketing online or even just being a good writer period.

  12. Bullet points interspersed with paraghraphs works for me. Write a paragraph first, break into another one, then another one and so on. When you feel like you are about to lose the reader, include a few bullet points. That ought to hit the spot, to be sure. The key is to find the right balance. Balanced writing means that it works for you and your readers or target audience. Too few bullet points can be just as bad as including too many bullet points. Hope this makes sense.
    I appreciate the fact that you contributed this wonderful guest post on this fab blog. Please keep up the good work. Cheerio.

  13. Thanks for the shot of inspiration and the humiliating realization that I violate just about every tenet in your post on a regular basis. Cheers.

  14. Excellent post. A day before I was just arguing with my friend about bullet points ( imagine that 🙂 ) and this article made my day )

  15. That makes me think of how many words you actually use when writing bullet points and also what’s the tone of your blog posts. Are your bullet points and posts filled with the word: “I” and it’s all about you?
    It’s not about you. It’s all about them. To have really effective engagement in your bullet points you have to earn their attention. To do this, you need to talk about them. To have your bullet points truly engage you need to change your “I-You ratio.” You start with the word “You,” and then use it a dozen more times then you use the word “I.” And that will help your engagement and getting the readers interest. That will help you to become more relevant and read.

    What are you going to do for them? What have you got to offer them? This isn’t about manipulation. It’s about being genuine. You need to actually serve the people with whom you are in conversation. If you want them to focus their attention on your words in your bullet points and blog posts, you must genuinely show your intention to meet their needs like Bruce suggests.

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