So you have finally got round to writing a blog for your website – good on you! But there are some things you need to know before you publish – in fact, this could be THE most important thing you know: Your headline needs to be killer. Remember these for U’s when writing one:-
Be USEFUL to the reader,
- Provide him with a sense of URGENCY,
- Convey the idea that the main benefit is somehow UNIQUE; and
- Do all of the above in an ULTRA-SPECIFIC
Start by asking yourself these six questions:
- Does your headline offer the reader a reward for reading?
- What specifics could you add to make your headline more intriguing and believable?
- Does your headline trigger a strong, actionable emotion the reader already has about the subject at hand?
- Does your headline present a proposition that will instantly get your prospect nodding his or her head?
- Could your headline benefit from the inclusion of a proposed transaction?
- Could you add an element of intrigue to drive the prospect into your opening copy?
Now you’ve considered the rules and questions above, I’ve broken down the main headline types with some examples to give you a head start: –
Direct Headlines go straight to the heart of the matter, without any attempt at cleverness e.g. a headline that states the selling proposition directly: Free SEO E-book.
Indirect Headline – This takes a more subtle approach. It uses curiosity to raise a question in the reader’s mind, which the body copy answers. Often a double meaning is utilised, which is useful online. An article might have the headline Fresh Bait Works Best and yet have nothing to do with fishing, because it’s actually about writing timely content that acts as link bait.
A News Headline is pretty self-explanatory, as long as the news itself is actually, well… news. A product announcement or a new and improved version can be the basis of a compelling news headline. Think Introducing Windows 10 or My Exclusive Interview With Steve Jobs.
The How to Headline is everywhere, online and off, for one reason only – it works like a charm. Many say that if you begin with the words “how to”, you can’t write a bad headline.
A Question Headline must do more than simply ask a question, it must be a question that your readers can empathise with or would like to see answered. An example of this might be Who Else Wants to Get Rich Online?
The Command Headline boldly tells the prospect what he needs to do, such as Exxon’s old Put a Tiger in Your Tank campaign. The first word should be a strong verb that demands action, such as Subscribe to our blogs Today!
Another effective technique is called the Reason Why Headline. Your body text consists of a numbered list of product features or tips, which you then incorporate into the headline, such as Two Hundred Reasons Why ….. is better than ……. It’s not even necessary to include the words “reasons why.”
Finally, there is the Testimonial Headline, which is highly effective because it presents outside proof that you offer great value. This entails taking what someone else has said about you, your product or service, and using their actual words in your headline. Quotation marks let the reader know that they are reading a testimonial, which will continue in the body copy. An example might be “I Read [insert name of yours] Blogs First Thing Each Morning,” admits [respected/well known person in your industry].
So there you have it. A run-down of headline top tips and tricks to help you write a killer headline that will turn impressions into clicks. Now its your job to convert those readers with your awesome blog into paying customers!
Still stuck? Give me me a buzz!