Hi all my fellow good souls @ reddit, (well, it's an easy guess that u arrived here via Reddit)
Here are the steps you were dying to know. These are tried and proven. (explained later). Have a look and enjoy!
1. Use a title like 'Top 3 reasons why men hate cooking' or ' 5 steps to write a good article' or '10 steps to improve your code'
Note the similarity: they all claim to give you easy to read, point format, no nonesense list. This attracts people, looks like readers automatically assume the claimed item list is fool proof, like some kind of a law. Wierd but it works........
2. Make sure your list of points are on something a typical user would really interested in reading.
like the subject here, 'How to get into the first page at reddit' . Since Reddit is mostly read by techies, Anything on Software, beer, technology, gadgets etc would do
3. In the title, be bold and ambitious on your claims. Bit of exagertion, over emphasizing, use of exclamation marks, etc.
All help win attention. No one wants to spend time reading something ordinary. So make it look like something extra ordinary. You should sound confident about what you have for them in your article.
4. Keep in mind the 'Resume Rule'
When we write a resume or CV, we are adviced to keep to a single page or at least present a short attractive summary. For good reasons too. If the Resume is unable to catch the readers eye and make him interested in the first 5-10 seconds, chances are that he will not even read the rest of the resume. Same goes for links. You have to grab the users attention and make him click on your link. This decision happend within first 5 seconds of reaing your title and readers have lots of links to view so you better fight for every gram of attention (how else to measure attention ?) you could get.
5. At the end of the title indicate that you have a cool video or an image for them to comfortably view.
This is self explanatory. People like to lazily look at a video or an image or to listen to a track rather than reading. It would be nice if you really have a video or an image for them as promised. :-)
7. In the article, leave some intentional mistake for attentive users to notice.
Hopefully this will encourage them to write a short comment pointing the mistake you have put there for them to 'catch'. I bet reddit ranking engine will look at the number of comments an article has. Can you spot the mistake in this article ?
8. Of course ask few of your friends to click on your submission once it appear on reddit 'new' items and ask them to write few comments as well.
May be you can try that on this article itself and see the difference. (see whether the reddit rank moves up noticiably after you ask few of your friends to click on this link)
9. Number of steps you mention in the title has to be a sexy number.
For istance, no one would be that interested on "7 steps to.... " or a "9 reasons why..." on the other hand 10, 3, 5 are 'good' numbers.
What this also mean is: it is not necessary that you have exactly 10 points in your artcle as promised. 9 would do as long as the title says something like '10 proven steps to..."
And how do I say these steps are proven?
Well, the mere fact that you are now reading this is the best proof that these steps work. You got attracted by the title of this article when you saw it on reddit havn't you ? So, at least as far as you are concerened, steps are 'proven' :-)