5 Ways to Write an Attention-Grabbing Headline
From the moment we open a web browser or mobile app, we’re constantly bombarded with information in a digital sensory overload. Emails, social media posts and search results all vie for our attention, which means we have to be very selective about the links we click on, and the ones we ignore. That decision-making process boils down to one piece of content: the headline.
A headline sets the tone of an article or blog post. Its role is simple – to convince readers to read further. It’s the ultimate content sales tool, and it’s vital to get it right. Without a strong, attention-grabbing headline your words will likely go unnoticed, so here are 5 ways to get it right.
1. Allow your headline to stand alone
Your headline is rarely read in context to its story. That means it must stand-alone – explaining exactly why your article is worth a read and luring your audience in, without the need for a lead-in paragraph Your headline appears on its own merits as a link on social media, in search engine rankings and on blogs, so make sure it is clear and easy to understand, summing up your post while building intrigue.
2. Pique your reader’s interest
Great headlines tackle a question that is relevant to your audience. Use your headline to explore a subject, promising answers within the body of your content. Why should a user click through to your website? Offer something different in your title – whether that’s an interesting viewpoint, unique insights or new statistics.
3. Keep it short
Your headline should be brief and to-the-point, or risk losing the reader in reams of text. By removing unnecessary words, you’re not only holding the attention of your audience but reducing the risk of truncated text when the link appears on devices with small screens.
4. Be plain speaking
When writing your headline, choose your language wisely. Steer clear of jargon, and get straight to the point with clear, plain-talking words. Niche language will work if you’re appealing to a niche audience. But as a basic rule, only use a word if your entire reader base will understand it.
5. Add keywords
Put keywords at the front of your title to get straight to the point. Your audience spends milliseconds scanning headlines, so the meaning of your headline should be clear with a momentary glance.
Don’t fall short at the last hurdle…
There’s no point in writing a great blog post or article without a strong, attention-grabbing headline to lure readers in. So be concise. Address a relevant, interesting topic and make sure it stands alone. Your headline is the first piece of content your audience will read, so don’t make it the last.
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