In case you haven’t yet discovered this, headline writing is one of the most important and potentially lucrative skills you can master.
It has been widely documented that 8 out of 10 people will read a headline, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest of the content. Making that equation more in your favor is what this is all about.
You have roughly 5-15 words to grab the attention, wring their emotions, and arouse the curiosity of your audience, so it’s critical to understand the best ways to get this done.
To help you with this, we’ve found 7 great tips for crafting headlines that do all of the above. Let’s put them to good use!
7 Tips You Can Use Today for Better Headline Writing
Keep them short – It’s been said that 6 word headlines are the ideal, but there is no hard and fast rule here. It is smart to keep them under 70 characters so that the entire title will show in Google’s search results. Moreover, short and punchy headlines are more memorable.
Make your headlines specific – Strive for specificity, and make sure your headline doesn’t promise anything your content doesn’t deliver. Not only this, but tell them exactly what you’re talking about: being mysterious usually falls flat. “How to fix your website’s images in 3 easy steps!”
Convey urgency – Nothing works like a little fear.“5 Ways to stop data thieves before they raid your online accounts!” Letting people know that there is a cost associated with waiting. (And not reading the rest of your article!)
What’s in it for them? – State a benefit in your headline. Readers want to know what they’re getting out of this, and it’s your job to tell them! Whether it’s “7 Uses for your deadbeat ex”, or 27 Ways to stretch your food budget!” the benefit is clear!
Use numbers – The use of numbers is a tried and true method for giving the reader a sense that they’re going to get a quantifiable amount of help here. “7 Tips for Breakfast in Bed She’ll Eat Up!
Don’t be afraid of controversy – Sometimes it helps to catch their attention by injecting a healthy dose of shock and awe.“Why you need to fire your SEO guy today!” Don’t be shy about stirring the pot, but be prepared to back it up.
Choose your words wisely – Use the most powerful, emotional and vivid words you can come up with. People respond to them. Milquetoast headlines are definitely a reason your content won’t get read. Be bold! Not only that, but if at all possible work your primary keyword into the title somehow. A magnetic headline optimized for search will be a winner every time!