Without a great headline, no one clicks, reads or converts. It all starts with having a headline that grabs attention. This is true for a blog post, TV ad, mailer and any other marketing piece you may use in your business. So how can one craft a headline that compels people to pay attention in a busy world? Here are nine easy tips to help you along:
- Be unique. The more unique, the better.
- Brainstorm, there are no bad ideas. One of our favorite exercises when developing headlines is to pull out a whiteboard and start writing words and phrases that are relevant to the product or service. We get headlines that are serious, silly, some are even outright wrong, but at the end of the session, we usually have a headline that works.
- Test it. Once you feel like you have a good headline, test it out on your staff, friends, networking groups to see if people respond how you desire.
- Use a keyword. We all have some sort of keyword research in our businesses at this point. Pick a keyword that gets high volume in the search engines. You have all of the research you need with this technique to know people will be looking for it.
- Use numbers, “how to” or “why”. There is proven research that people respond at higher rates when you include a number, the word “how to” or ask a question in your headline. We like to use odd numbers as they seem to grab more attention than even ones.
- Negative language works. As much as it pains us to say, using a negative framework that points out the pain around the problem your product or service solves actually works much more effectively than positive language. While we always like to keep positivity in everything we do, the world does not always agree. Read this study from Outbrain about how the negative works in some cases to 30% better than a positive message. https://www.business2community.com/blogging/new-outbrain-study-says-negative-headlines-better-positive-0810707
- Avoid clickbait. Make sure the headline is relevant to the content or you could get into some trouble, not only with the trust of your readers but also the world of Google. Relevancy scores are now being measured via internet advertising, social media, and other digital marketing.
- Hint at something outrageous. A great headline will tease a bit about the content it is promoting. Again, make sure you are being relevant but feel free to be outside of the box when describing your solution. It could lead to some really great headlines!
- Use humor but be careful. Puns, sarcasm, and jokes sometimes require context and can be read differently than meant. Again, if you use humor, wordplay or other forms of being “punny”, test it. Social media is a great place to see if people “get it.”
Need more ideas on great headlining? Contact us at Plumb Marketing. We can tell you if a headline will work or not.