The coworker won. Of 90 “Top 7″ stories submitted to Digg, 53 made the front pageâ€”59%.
Second place? Top 12: 34 stories submitted, 16 made popularâ€”47%.
Top tens took third, with 39% of the 1680 “Top 10″ stories submitted to Digg becoming popular. Top 5s and Top 11s tied for fourth, with 29% of 558 stories and 34 stories becoming popular, respectively.
Interestingly, it could be the popularity of Top 10 and Top 5 lists that make them less popular (by the way, thanks, ProBloggerâ€”the Group Writing Project triggered nearly 1000 Top 5 posts throughout the blogosphere).
There were more top 10 stories (1680) than any other numbered list stories submitted to Digg. Top 5s were a distant second, with less than a third as many (558). With so many stories on Digg, it’s going to be a lot harder for a significant number of them to become popularâ€”not to mention the eye-rolling and sighing that have begun to accompany posts with “Top 10″ in the headline. Top 7 lists are the third most popular, with less than 1/6th as many top 7s as top 5s. Still, they outperformed their more popular compatriots.
One final note: if you’re making Diggbait, don’t use the Top 3, Top 4, Top 6 or Top 8 format. Less than 10% of stories in each of those formats actually become popular on Digg.
Somehow, I doubt that David Letterman will change his format.