Your headline is the first, and perhaps only, impression you make on a prospective reader.
Without a compelling promise that turns a browser of your content into a reader of your content, the rest of your words may as well not even exist. So, from a copy writing and content marketing standpoint, writing great headlines is a critical skill.
Here are some interesting statistics.
On average, 8 out of 10 people will read your headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest.
This is the secret to the power of your headline, and why it so highly determines the effectiveness of the entire piece.
Remember, every element of compelling copy has just one purpose — to get the next sentence read. And then the sentence after that, and so on, all the way down to your call to action. So it’s fairly obvious that if people stop at the headline, you’re already dead in the water.
The better your headline, the better your odds of beating the averages and getting what you’ve written read by a larger percentage of people.
This blog will provide you with concrete guidance that’ll have you writing better headlines in no time.
Why You Should Always Write Your Headline First
Want to write great headlines, and even better content? Start with the headline first.
Of course, you’ll need to have a basic idea for the subject matter of your blog post, article, free report, or sales letter. Then, simply take that basic idea and craft a killer headline before you write a single word of the body content.
Your headline is a promise to readers. Its job is to clearly communicate the benefit you’ll deliver to the reader in exchange for their valuable time.
Promises tend to be made before being fulfilled. Writing your content first puts you in the position of having to reverse-engineer your promise.
Turn it around the other way and you have the benefit of expressly fulfilling the compelling promise you made with the headline, which ultimately helps to keep your content crisp and well-structured.
Trying to fulfill a promise you haven’t made yet is tough, and often leads to a marginal headline. And a poorly-crafted headline allows good deeds to go unnoticed.
You know, like your content.
“But that still doesn’t tell me how to write a great headline,” you’re saying.
No worries. That’s what this Magnetic Headlines blog is all about.
Do Keywords in Post Titles Really Matter?
It’s an epic battle of biblical proportions in the blogosphere.
The search engine optimization camp says keywords are the most important aspect of a blog post title.
How else will you rank high in the results and get clicks by searchers, they say, if the right keywords are missing from the title?
On the other hand, you’ve got the purist “write for humans” camp, who collectively scoff at the notion of keyword research for headline writing.
What’s the point of search-optimized post titles if no one reads or shares in the first place? And search engine traffic isn’t really all that important to most bloggers anyway, they vehemently maintain, especially compared to high-quality referral traffic from links.
Well, here’s the verdict.
Keywords matter, but not necessarily for the reasons the SEO folks think.
Doing keyword research is a magical thing. It’s a free or low-cost window into the mind of your target audience.
Keywords matter, because when you speak the language of the audience you attract more readers, more links, more retweets, more social bookmarks, and yes… more relevant search traffic. Both camps are right, for different reasons.
Now that we’ve negotiated a temporary peace in the blogosphere, let’s look at one of the most effective headline types in the world — the “how-to” headline.
Blog to be continued…
Alright folks! Keep posted for the continuation of this blog!
Don’t forget to follow me!