Headlines usually end up as a quick afterthought, but should really be treated with more consideration. In truth, your headline can be more important than the article itself if you think about it; Who cares how great your blog post is if no one even reads it? The Headline is where your focus should be. You should begin and end every article with the question: “Would I want to read on?”
Every entrepreneur knows how important it is to advertise a business especially if you’re just a startup company trying to compete in an industry swimming with a few known and firmly established competitors. The good thing is that the internet has made it so much easier to advertise your business to so many people in such a short span of time.
The only problem here is how you’re going to get them to notice your article with just a glance.
If you’re not a writer then the task of creating an eye-catching headline that will make readers catch on to your article and share it has just gotten more difficult to do, but you need not worry anymore. This article will tell you how to make those newsworthy headlines enticing enough to be shared to others.
Your headline can be DIRECT
Be straight forward with your prospect and let them know what they’ll really be reading into. This approach can seem dull, but for most people they’ll be grateful to see a headline that sounds like it came right off the bat of what they are looking for.
Example: “Marketing Software on Sale” or “LandlordMax – 30% off Today Only”
Your headline can be INDIRECT
Be subtle, sometimes you can use what we consider as bait to generate curiosity for your readers. This can sometimes lead with double meanings in your headline so be careful not to disappoint your readers.
Example: “Fresh Bait Works Best” yet nothing about this has got to do with fishing; it’s actually about writing content that acts as link bait.
Your headline can be about NEWS
Usually considered as a direct announcement, if you think your product/discussion is newsworthy then why not pass it as a headline. This is a very journalistic way to show authority and be straightforward, without the reader losing interest.
Example: “Remote-Control Car to Debut in April” or “Announcing a Cure for Cancer”
Your headline can be a HOW-TO
What better way to catch your readers’ attention then to use the very words that majority of people type into a search engine to learn how to do something. If you ever get stuff, this is the best option it tells readers your article is there to help.
Example: “How to Fix a Broken Faucet” or “How to Increase Conversions”
Your headline can ask a QUESTION
This usually serves as an enticing invitation to readers to click the link and read on. Keep in mind you have to be careful in using this technique, make sure to know your market well and that your readers can either relate to, empathize with or would like something answered.
Example: “Who Else Wants to Make a Million Dollars in the Stock Market?” or “Has Your Website Traffic Dropped?”
Your headline can give a DEMAND
Everyone knows that authority and directive can get any ones attention. This is intended to tell your reader and make them think what they need to do upon reading the article. It’s the best way to encourage your readers by offering benefit in return.
Example: “Stop Wasting Your Dollars on Marketing” or “Download This EBook Now!”
Your headline can be a LIST or provide a REASON WHY
Everyone like a numbered list; it offers a promise that they came out with a handful of results to grasp onto after their reading experience. It even serves as a prospect to why your readers should continue reading your article.
Example: “10 ways to be more time productive” or “25 Reasons to Eat Turkey”
Your headline can be a TESTIMONIAL
This can usually be a customer’s testimonial or that of an influential person. This is to offer proof or validation that your article/product is good and worth the readers time. Make sure to back up the article and to keep the reader intrigued.
Example: “How I lost weight in 2 weeks” or “This product is the best online tool I’ve used”
Your headline can give BENEFIT
You have to know your market well, why? Benefits are not like features that one can just state and get it over with. You have to tell your readers what they can expect, not an overall view. Make sure to highlight the benefits your reader will gain and paint them an optimistic picture.
Example: “Increase conversion at a Lower Cost” or “Try Buffalos Best Wings”
Your Headline can serve as a GUARANTEE
You can use a guarantee in your headline to gain the readers trust. You don’t have to use the specific word ‘guarantee’ in your headline, just make sure you can back up your promises. This can go hand in hand with benefits, and will keep readers interested.
Example: “Generate 100 Leads in 60 Days or it’s FREE” or “Chrysler Extends Auto Guarantee”
All writers are aware that a headline can either make or break their story. Without a catchy headline, chances are, a reader would not be interested to read your article, no matter how well the body is written. Your headline can either catapult your article to become trending or it could just be one of the thousands of articles created daily that are ignored by the masses.
These 10 tips are a sure win for eye-catching headlines. For most writers, the practice of writing and using these as headlines come easily. However, there are a few more things that can always come in handy to give your headline that wow factor.
Make sure your headline makes a statement. What do you want to achieve? And how do you want to go about it? You can be informative, intriguing, be controversial but most importantly offer some value to the reader in exchange for them taking the time to read your content.
At the same time, some of the most eye-catching headlines do what we term “Breed Distrust”. People are usually cynical, and will often jump at the chance to read about how they are being manipulated or deceived. So make sure to educate the masses, people often search online to educate themselves or learn more about a particular concept.
For most people, it’s easier to use the “The 4 U’s Formula”;
- Urgent – gives you cause to take action now,
- Unique – Say it in an entirely different way,
- Ultra-specific –to draw the reader in and
- Useful – appeal to the reader’s needs.
You can rarely have all four in a single headline, but if you can at least include one or two then you’re bound to write a headline that’s more likely to compel your prospective customers to continue reading.
Another simple strategy would be to use the 5 W’s
- Where and
These engaging words are used to collect information. When you use these in making your headlines, you provide readers the kind of information you intend to provide. Try to keep headlines under 70 characters, to hold your readers interest.
For the Basics you can always try this effective headline-creating formula:
Number or Trigger word + Adjective + Keyword + Promise
For example, if we want to write about “social media marketing” we could write a blog post with the following title: “How to Make Money with Social Media” or “Why I Love Social Media Marketing.” That’s catchy enough, but if we use the above formula chances are that we will get a lot of attention: “18 Incredible Ways To Make Money With Social Media Marketing”
The most important thing to remember when writing a headline aside from your article is to think about who you are writing for. Learn and try to understand their feelings, beliefs, and desires.
Always make sure to define what your article is all about. You would not want your readers to feel short-changed, so be articulate in what you’ll be covering in the article.
No one is going to click a vague headline; it’s your job to get the reader excited about reading your post. They should feel like kids at the entrance of Disney Land or Universal Studios.
The primary purpose of the headline is to get the first sentence read. Convincing your customers to keep reading means the time or money you invest won’t go to waste.
Your business’s blog is very important especially when you want to create a strong online presence. Some of the best ways are to demonstrate your value, you want to explain to readers, in so many words, why your article is worth reading.
The key? Prove that you are useful and that you are providing essential info. So use strong adjectives and verbs, ask questions, use keywords, and brainstorm lots of different headlines.