57 ONE-SENTENCE tips writing good headlines, best-selling headline types, before you even start writing headlines, the best headline length, must use trigger words, words to include in a headline, etc.
Let me start with this quote of Claude Hopkins, one of that hall of fame copywriters:
“The writing of headlines is one of the greatest journalistic arts.”
As Victor Schwab, another genius copywriter once put it: “Obviously, it is the headline that gets people into the copy.”
Think about it. You might write the best article in the world yet when your headline sucks you might as well write it in Greek or Mandarin. Nobody’s going to read it anyway.
That’s why the headline is such a crucial part of the content.
The big trouble is that writing sticky titles takes a LOT of work, though. It’s an ART. One of the GREATEST journalistic arts!
That’s why I collected these 57 ONE-SENTENCE tips on headline writing. All of them are in an easy to swallow format and tell you how to produce great headlines.
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Let’s dig in, shall we?
Tips Writing Good Headlines – the Purpose of Headline Is:
1. To show your reader that the article is worth his time.
2. To give a message to those who read nothing but headlines and only then decide if they will read more or not.
3. To pick from the total readership only those readers who are interested in your subject or product (= your target audience).
4. To promise a reward for reading the article, copy, etc.
5. To make it harder for people to pass up your article than to read it.
Types of Headlines
6. The best headlines are “self-interest headlines” – headlines that offer something that readers want… and can get from you.
7. The second best headlines are “news headlines” – those that give news.
8. The third best headlines are “curiosity headlines” – those that appeal to people’s curiosity.
9. To add even more pulling power to your headline, combine self-interest or news with curiosity.
10. Use “quick and easy” appeal in your “self-interest” headline to show that there is a quick N easy way for your prospects to get something they want.
11. When you use “Curiosity headline” tell your readers enough to arouse their curiosity but don’t give the whole story away.
12. “Question headlines” more than double click-through rates on average.
13. However, to make a “question headline” a real “stopper” it must be a question that your reader wants to see answered.
14. “Question headlines” which reference the reader (“you”) are one of the most effective headlines of all.
15. Question headlines” that reference the reader are more effective than a “question-only headlines” or a “declarative headlines.”
Tips Writing Good Headlines – Before You Start
16. Think how to make the message so persuasive that it raises the headline above all the other life distractions.
17. Try to put yourself in a bored customer’s shoes.
18. Try to figure out what headline would make YOU stop if you were surfing through websites and were not interested in any particular article (or ad) at all.
19. Think how to make your headline capture attention of your target audience.
20. Address your headline to a specific group (or person).
21. Figure out what is the biggest point of your article.Then make sure the biggest point is in your headline.
22. Think how to catch the eyes of your prospect with something direct, something simple, and something they want.
23. Try to give your readers promises that they cannot resist.
24. Write your headline in brief, simple language.
25. People like to interact with other people so try to be human (not too smart, not too robotic).
26. Write your headline in editorial style.
27. Increase your believability by using specific figures in your headline.
28. Believability by putting a date into your headline
29. Write many different versions of your headline and then pick the best one.
Tips Writing Good Headlines – The Length of a Headline
30. Usually (although not always), it is wise to keep headlines short, under 8 words (less than 70 characters).
31. The average length of a viral headline is 62 characters.
32. However, it is better to use a long headline that says something than a short one, which does not say anything.
33. You can make your long headlines more compelling (and readable) if you emphasize certain words (using bold, all capital, bigger font size, etc.)
34. It is crucial, though, that the words you emphasize mean something.
35. Make sure you emphasize the right words in your headline as they help to select your prospects from the audience.
Offering a Reward
36. In your headline offer your reader a “reward for reading” the article.
37. The reward that you offer to your reader in a headline can be positive or negative:
- The positive reward could be something that will increase his financial, social, physical, spiritual, mental, or emotional well-being, or security.
- The negative reward could be something that will decrease his fear of failure, poverty, illness, mistakes, prestige (business or personal), embarrassment, discomfort, etc.
38. Use facts and figures for offering benefits to your readers.
39. In a headline tell your reader how easily or quickly or cheaply your promise will be accomplished.
40. Give your headline more pulling power by featuring reduced price in your headline.
41. Present a special offer in a headline.
42. Promote a free offer
43. Feature an easy-payment plan in your headline.
44. Give your reader a warning about what happens if he delays buying
Writing Good Headlines – Words to Use
45. To write a “news” headline, use the words new or announcing, as they give your headline the news flavor.
46. Use superlatives like
- mind blown
47. Use trigger words such as
48. To increase pulling power of your headline, use words like:
- right now
- works quickly
- the secret
49. Use the words “you” and “your” in your headlines
50. Use the word “this” in a headline. It makes the product specific for the reader and causes a feeling in him that the reward is attainable.
51. Begin your headline with the words
- at last
- how to
- Who else?
52. Begin your headline with the word “Why” because:
- “Why” creates a curiosity gap in our brain
- “Why” promises an explanation.
53. Start your headline with “How to” as it promises a certain level of free education and thus these headlines are extremely effective.
54. If your article contains video, use the word “video” in your headline.
55. Use words and phrases like “Introductory,” “in 3 minutes,” “beginner’s guide,” etc., as they give a promise to your reader – he can learn as quickly as possible.
56. Use phrases like “this is what,” “what happens when,” etc., as they arouse your readers’ curiosity and also promise a certain level of discovery.
57. Use the superlative “the most” as 1) it increases your authority and 2) it gives your reader an opportunity to put you to test (if your superlative holds water).
58. Use emotional trigger words:
59. Use words like:
If you follow these easy tips given above, you make your headlines way more compelling. Remember, writing a killer headline is an art, and it takes the time to come out with a real gem. Remember also that cream de la cream copywriters spend at least the same amount of time (or more) to writing their headlines as their copies.
Therefore, before you begin writing a headline, do some thinking first. Think who is your target audience. What headline style to use? How long the headline should be? What kind of benefit or reward to use and how? What trigger words to use, etc.
All these aspects, if done correctly, increase the pulling power of your headline. That, of course, means bigger click-through rates, more leads, and greater profits.
Before You Go:
What other tips writing, good headlines do you know or use. Please do me a favor and drop a comment into the comment box below.
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