Post Titles That Attract More Clicks
How much time do you invest in creating titles for your company’s blog posts? More or less than the time to write all the rest of the post?
Most people answer that less, much less time. Writing a title line seems to be a lot simpler than writing the various paragraphs that shape the text. However, the responsibility of the title in the results of a post is incredibly disproportionate to its size.
There is no doubt that only good text retains readers, but there is no retention without initial attraction. Many great blog posts are not read or spread for this reason: it lacks a catchy title.
The Importance of an Attractive Title
We live in an age of information abundance. If this is good on the one hand, for those who work in marketing there is an important warning: the competition for attention has never been so great.
When writing for a loyal audience that already knows and admires the authors, the title is less important. Just keep the quality of the texts and the readers will come back. Less concrete titles can work, even if they don’t look very attractive or indicate the topic being addressed.
As for people who don’t know the blog yet (probably most of its potential customers), there is an unconscious suspicion: with so much to do and so much information available, is it worth spending my time reading this article? What does this have to do with me? How much does the content add to me?
Think about how many emails you get daily and how many links your friends share on Facebook or Twitter that you simply ignore.
It’s usually the headline that appears as the subject of an email, text in tweets, or highlighted when someone likes or shares a post on Facebook.
Types of Titles that Work
1. Theme + Decoy
One of the headline styles we like the most is the one that highlights and explains the theme first and then uses a more flashy phrase.
This type of title also helps a lot in organic searches, since the most important words of the theme are presented directly at the beginning of the title and even so, they are still interesting, since there is a call-to-action in the sequence. Examples:
- Inbound Marketing: is it good for your business?
- Content production: the best bet in Digital Marketing
2. Open-ended Questions/Answers
Your post must have been written to present some problem or solution, and normally this problem or solution can be expressed with a sentence that starts with “How”, “Why”, “What”, “When” or “Who”, as in the posts below:
- What can a development company gain from a private cloud
- When your company can (or can’t) automate social media posts
3. Lists and Numbers
Posts with lists of items are impressive for their effectiveness. Although simple, it’s amazing how well they always work.
The number is concrete and conveys the idea of great benefit in reading. List posts also implicitly indicate content broken into topics and easy to read, and attractive format for Internet users. More examples:
- 5 tips to keep your accounts payable in order in your business
- The 10 Most Common Twitter Startup Mistakes
4. Provocative or Controversial
Anything a little more controversial ends up drawing attention. Posts that follow this line always tend to receive more clicks. The counterpart is that this requires a broad knowledge of the subject so that your company can sustain the vision and avoid the dislike/criticism of some people. Disagreeing with an expert or a company are common ways to do this. Teasing the reader itself can also work. Example:
- “Storytelling” may not be what you are imagining!
- 3 mistakes you are making in Digital Marketing
Use Some Magic Words
There are common titles that, if added with a few words, become fantastic. Some words highlight the article and somehow end up arousing desire, expectation, or curiosity.
Common Examples: Free, awesome, perfect, new, better, complete, essential, easy, simple, guaranteed, unusual, surprising, ridiculous, idiotic, unknown.
Mix the Different Techniques
In many cases, it is possible to use several of the techniques at the same time. For example, you can use a list as a decoy in the Theme + Decoy template, and you can be provocative using open-ended questions and answers.
Each combination can offer a more attractive possibility, so don’t be afraid to take a risk.
Always Analyze in the Keyword Tool
Google offers a tool to estimate how much a keyword is searched for: the Keyword Tool.
A simple search in the tool before writing the headline can be of great value to understand what people are looking for. If you were writing about the subject, a search might reveal, for example, that the word “car” is searched for 20 times more often than the word “automobile”. Brutal differences like this occur in a myriad of other cases and most likely in the topics of your posts as well.
Write Several Options
If we consider the title so important and difficult, it makes no sense to leave it for the end and write it in 2 minutes. It’s worth spending more time creating several versions of it and looking for one that stands out.
– Is the title well out of its original context?
– Would someone who doesn’t know your company or the subjects you write identify with the topic of the post?
– How attractive is the promise made? Does it seem to speak to a real problem/interest of your audience?
– Could the title benefit from list numbers or the magic words we indicate?
– Is the title compatible with the content of the post? Won’t it cause any disappointment in continuing reading?
– Does the title use words relevant to the company’s SEO strategy?