First impressions mean everything. While this is often applied to people, businesses, or places, the same can be said about websites and blogs. For these, headlines are the first impressions. And, to have a successful blog, these headlines need to make a good first impression. Having headlines that resonate with an audience is the best way to attract more readers.
Here are a few tips on how to write headlines that attract more readers. Headlines won’t be able to include every single tip here, but combining one or two will vastly improve the quality of headlines.
1. Know the Target Audience
This is a big one. The first thing a blogger needs to do is identify the audience that will be reading the blog. This will help give a baseline for what type of person the article needs to attract. Once this is decided, the wording can be created to draw that audience in. For more research at what a target audience is looking for, bloggers can visit forums and see the wording of the audiences’ questions. Then, when they’re searching online, the blogs with the same wording will come up.
2. Use “How to”
Using these words immediately sends the message that the blog is going to teach the reader something. And, if the next few words are interesting (How to Make the Perfect Coffee, How to Lose 20 Pounds in 20 Days), readers want to read the instructions immediately. They want to see if the steps are something they can follow and if they’ll really lead to the results promised. Sure, they may not follow the instructions, but they’ll be interested to know what the blog or article is offering to teach.
3. Write a “List-icle”
Thanks to websites like BuzzFeed, listicles are the new articles. Like “How to” articles, listicles promise steps to complete something or a certain number of points to prove something. For example, if this article was a listicle, it would be titled “5 Ways to Create Attractive Headlines”. They promise short, to the point reading, which is attractive for the majority of today’s audience.
4. Keep it Simple
It may be tempting to stuff as much information as possible into a headline, but long, convoluted headlines don’t grab readers’ attention. Which one sounds better? ‘Save Money by Advertising Less and Showing More Products’ or ‘Advertise Less and Save Money’. Short. Simple. Sweet. Every journalist knows that headlines need to quick and catchy and the same is true for online blogs and articles.
5. Focus on Improvements
People want to know how they can make their lives better. Whether it be getting more organized, making more money, eating better, or dressing better, people have an innate need to improve. Headlines can play off this need by focusing on how the subject matter can make the readers life better. Even if the topic may not be something that obviously improves the readers’ life, the writer should find a way to give the headline that twist towards self-improvement.