How to: 8 simple ways to create an effective headline

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How to: 8 simple ways to create an effective headline

Would you try the food in a restaurant if its front was in tatters and run down looking? No matter how good your cuisine is you won’t entice people to try it with a neglected entrance. The same theory applies to your headline. No matter how good your copy is it won’t even be read if your headline is uninviting.

Your headline is the first impression you make on the reader. And depending on its effectiveness, it may be the only impression you make on the reader. According to Neil Patel, a headline makes up about 50% of your blog’s effectiveness. With that in mind, we’ve put together some tips for creating the perfect headline to ensure click through every time.

Client blog post oneSpend time creating your headline

It’s completely acceptable to spend 40 minutes trying to create the perfect headline, altering it many times during the writing process. As they say, you can’t rush greatness. Give yourself plenty of time to devise your headline; don’t leave it until five minutes before you’re due to publish your piece.

 

Pink-2Make your headline unique

People are being pummelled with content every single day, so it’s going to be tricky to stand out, but it is essential to not be a carbon copy of all other content out there.

 

Step 1 to creating customer personasInclude the format of your content

People want to know immediately if content is being offered up as a blog post, infographic, video and so on.

Step 1 to creating customer personas

Use numbers or data

Research shows that headlines containing numbers or data have increased social engagement and shares of 73%. Your brain can digest numbers more easily than words, plus it lets the reader know what sort of copy length they’re about to commit to.

   

teal-5Use of an adjective

The adjective is going to really seal the deal for your headline. If your reader first clocks the topic of the sentence and is interested, and then sees the format (8 ways etc) and still is pleased, it’s the adjective that can finish the job of reeling them in. Popular adjectives include ‘free’, ‘easy’, ‘interesting’, ‘surprising’, ‘essential’, ‘useful’ and ‘funny’. Just be sure to live up to the promise made by your adjective.  


Pink-6Make your headline specific

There are a million articles titled ‘What is content marketing?’ Immediately the reader is going to think, “Okay this is nothing I haven’t read before!” You need to be very specific about what your copy is going to offer that not all other blogs are offering.

Change your headline to ‘How exactly does content marketing differ from traditional marketing?’ or ’10 ways content marketing is going to help your business attract more clients’. Be the fish in the pond with standout scales.


7It must portray its usefulness

If the copy isn’t going to clearly benefit the reader in some way, they have absolutely no cause to read it. You can’t hope a generally interesting article will be enough, it must offer value to the reader. Again, be sure to make your copy live up to the value promised by your headline. Otherwise you’re really going to irritate people and turn them off your content in the future.

 

8Ask the reader a question or make a bold command

Why, what, how or when are big trigger words. They appeal to the curiosity in your reader and is a good ploy to get them involved from the very start. If you’re presented with a question that you don’t know the answer to, chances are you’ll have a slight itch to find out the answer.

 

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