If you want anybody to read or even consider reading your web content, you need to have a headline that is going to stop them in their tracks from scrolling and click and read your story, article or blog post. Of course, creating captivating headlines is easier said than done, that’s why we have put together this guide on how you can easily create headlines that will grab attention.
Do a little research to get your creative juices and inspiration flowing. This can be done right before you write your piece of content or just when you have free time. Look at magazines, newspapers, and online news outlets to see how they structure their headlines, what kind of wording they use, and pay close attention to which ones really captured your attention.
Understand your audience
In order to capture attention, you must understand who you are writing for. Obviously, different things will grab attention for different people, this is why it’s so important to do some research into your audience so you know exactly who you are writing for.
Write a few versions of your headline
Come up with some keywords and structure them differently, then read the headlines out loud. Go with the one that is the strongest, flows the best and uses the strongest, attention-grabbing words.
Crunch the numbers
Make sure your headline includes the most important benefit, as well as the product that you are pushing or the solution to a problem. Don’t run away from numbers and data. In fact, run to it!
Research has shown that headlines that include numbers generate 73 percent more shares on social media and overall engagement. *Tip: Use the actual number for headlines instead of writing it out, for example, use 7 instead of writing out seven.
Some ways that you can include numbers and benefits in a headline include: 8 Tips to Gain 10,000 Followers, 10 Best Tricks to Up Your Engagement, 15 Ways You Can Gain New Followers Today, 8 Secrets to Developing the Perfect Website.
Add some wit
Puns, humor, and any general wit that you can add to your headline is a great way to capture the attention of readers.
If you want people to be captivated by your headline, add some urgency, otherwise they are going to tell themselves that they can come back and read your post later (they likely never will). You want them to think that they must read it right now.
When a headline is filled with urgently, readers will respond and buy a product or service more quickly because human psychology is wired to persuade them to buy based on emotions and justify the purchase based on logic. This is why you will often see ads and other marketing material that says “Hurry!” “Time is Running Out!” “Act Now!” “Sale Ends in 2 Hours” and so on. This type of language motivates the reader to act immediately for fear of missing out on a deal.
You want your headline to be clear and to easily make sense upon the first read. If people struggle to read and comprehend your headline, they are not going to click on the article. Capture their attention with crisp copy that clearly states what the article is about.
Another way to capture the attention of people online with a headline, is to use words that convey emotion. Whether you are trying to evoke feelings of love, joy or sadness add the following “power words” words to your headline to do so: Amazing, Eyeopening, Fearless, Grit, Belief, Guts, Breathtaking, Happy, Heart, Hero, Hope, Miracle, Stunning.
The four Us for headline success
Your headline should be unique: If your headline is just like everybody else’s, there is no motivation for readers to click on your article. Your customers won’t think that you are different from your competition when you are posting the same exact headlines and content as them, do make sure your headline is unique and stands out.
Your headline should be ultra-specific: You want your headline to be as specific as possible in order to draw customers in. If you aren’t specific and leave key parts out of the headline, customers won’t get the full gist of the deal, promotion or offer that you are offering and it won’t entice them enough to click on the headline and followthrough with a purchase.
Your headline should convey a sense of urgency: We discussed the importance of an urgent headline above.
Your headline should be useful: One surefire way to have people clicking on your web content is by providing useful information or solutions to their problems. Think of yourself as a resource for your customers and you will have them clicking on your headlines and coming back time and time again.
The next time you go to write a headline, use this guide and you will create attention-grabbing headlines. Don’t forget to measure the success of your new headlines using analytics so you can tweak your formula until you find the one that works the best for you and attracts the most readers and customers.