Part of creating great content for your site is developing articles that have eye-catching headlines. Why?
The plethora of information available on the web has trained us to seek instant gratification, dipping in and out of sites within seconds if the content doesn't immediately grab our attention.
Former Microsoft researcher Linda Stone dubbed this "continuous partial attention" and it’s one of the many reasons why you need to make your content grab people and drag them in even if their house is on fire – they need to read what you've got to say! Think of it as your very own blog ‘tractor beam’.
We will refer to this as ‘grabity’. The more attractive and eye-catching your titles are the stronger your grabity, and no one is immune to the law of grabity so use it to your advantage.
Firstly, let’s just quickly review why we need catchy headlines.
- The title determines whether the article will be read – With many surfers using RSS feeds they only see the title. A vague, uninspiring title is likely to get passed over.
- Titles determine Success in Search Engines – It’s a balancing act between choosing words with less competition but that are still getting searched on. Additionally, an engaging title is more likely to be clicked on when it shows in the search results.
- A good title sets up the rest of the article – A sharp, clear title can give your writing direction and purpose.
- Titles are Essential for Social Bookmaking Sites – In some sites such as Digg people will vote (thumbs up or down) for an article simply based on the title!
So we know its important! So what can we do about that and improve the grabity of our titles?
Here’s our top seven tips for improving your headline grabity
- How To – The words "how to" suggest we will be told something useful.
- Secrets – Using this word suggests we actually have some new ideas that haven’t yet been discovered.
- Myths - People love the debunking of conventional wisdom.
- Question – Using a question encourages reader participation
- Top 10 – Despite the internet being swamped with lists, they continue to be popular.
- How I did it – Not only does this help your article to stand out as unique (no one else has done it quite like you) but also people respond very well to a personal perspective.
- Celebrity – Name dropping works well online too ;).
Tool tip time – Affilorama free bullet point generator
Another way to spice up your headlines and titles is by using Affilorama’s free bullet point generator.
To use this free tool simply visit our affiliate tools section and you will see our bullet point generator. Choose the number of headlines you want and click Generate. Done! Then you can easily copy and paste directly from the website to your article.
What is your best title or headline trick? Would love to hear your thoughts.