The first thing you need to know it that most people don’t bother to read past titles, so all that effort and time you’ve spent writing your brilliant article is wasted if nobody reads it. It’s estimated that two out of every 10 people will read your article and eight out of 10 will read the title, so your title really has to be amazing to grab attention. The reason your content or blog titles must be compelling is to get people to click, read, and if it’s about a product, to part with their hard-earned cash. Copywriters such as Doug Phillips and other highly successful writers and marketers have trained and practiced writing content and headlines so skilfully that readers buy the products and services advertised.
Another thing to be aware of is that the clickbait era is over. Everyone has caught on to that trick so make sure your title and content doesn’t promise too much and provide too little. The following tips will help you hone your title writing skills:
1. Try Out Multiple Titles For Each Article
While there’s no magic formula for writing the most successful titles, copywriters will test at least five and often many more for every article they write. Most professional bloggers and content specialists do the same, and they choose the one that cries out to be read and clicked through. Writing multiple titles also helps you to brainstorm and get creative with your titles.
2. Use Numbers in Titles
Specific titles command attention, and the way to get people reading further is to use specifics such as numbers. According to research by Conductor(1), people much prefer to see numbers in titles. For example, which of the following headlines is more compelling?
- ‘How to Learn to Play Guitar’
- ‘5 Hints on Learning to Play Guitar in 7 Days’
Most readers prefer the second title because the first one doesn’t say very much. The second one contains numbers and is more specific, which gives the reader a sense that the writer knows the subject. Tip: Use odd rather than even numbers for more clicks. If your content contains even numbered items, delete the weakest, or add a plus sign (e.g. 12+) in the title.
3. Use Brackets, Parentheses, Hyphens and Colons
One way to elicit more click-throughs is to create more engaging titles using colons, hyphens and brackets or parentheses, though not all at once. An Outbrain(2) study found that click-through rates can be increased by nine per cent by using colons and hyphens, and titles using parentheses performed 38 per cent better than those without them. Parentheses, colons, hyphens etc. create visual variety and tend to engage readers. One way to take advantage of colons and hyphens is by using your search engine optimisation (SEO) keyword phrase like: ‘Write Amazing Headlines: 5 Ways to Get More Click-Throughs’. Or, you can practice hard, write multiple titles, and create your own formulas.
4. Consider Asking Questions
People can rarely resist a title that asks a question. They become curious and will want to know the answer so they’ll click on the headline and read on. But don’t frustrate the reader by dropping hints and not answering the question until the very end or until they pay or subscribe. Nothing puts people off more when they feel they’re being baited or conned. Also, as most bloggers are aware, you need to research keywords to find out what people are looking for so you can include them to ensure continual SEO and increase traffic. The main thing is to write titles that are better than those of your competition.
5. Suggestions on ‘How Best to Do Something’ Are Effective
Successful titles will address a target audience and connect with searches for the most effective ways to solve a problem. Content that begins with ‘The 5 Best Ways to…’ can convince readers to click on a link, or scroll down the page and read the post, which could even go viral. People searching on Google ask questions and a question in a title is an invitation to engage in a conversation. Questions ignite a reader from passive to active reading providing the content is something they care about. Your target audience must want an answer to your question.
If you’re looking for a professional copywriter to create compelling content for your website, or to write press releases or blogs, Adelaide-based writer Doug Phillips is a man who listens and understands what you want to achieve and what’s most important to you. Doug can use your goals and desires and turn them into professional copy that will draw your clients in, and help them to understand, see and feel exactly what you want to convey. Copywriting isn’t about magic tricks and shortcuts. It’s about effective communication. Doug’s focus is on communicating with his clients so he can communicate their message to your target audience. Contact Doug today on 0415 585 553, email firstname.lastname@example.org or complete an online form.
Alex Morrison has worked with a range of businesses giving him an in depth understanding of many different industries including house cleaning, financial support and health care. As the owner of Integral Media, he is now utilising his knowledge and experience with his rapidly increasing client portfolio to help them achieve their business goals.