Headlines can make or break content marketing, pay-per-click advertising and social media marketing campaigns. The headline is the first thing potential customers see when viewing your content and marketing messages. If your headline doesn’t grab their attention and compel them to read on or click through to the main content, you have lost your audience. Here are four tips for creating clickable headlines.
Keep it Short
Succinct headlines are usually best, particularly when using social media to promote your content. Social media users scan content quickly, often reading only the first and last few words of a headline to see if it interests them. Long headlines are also difficult to read on mobile phones and other small devices, as the screen may not be big enough to display the full headline. Ideally, headlines should be between four and eight words.
Use Lists and Numbers
Lists and numbered headlines are among the most clicked and shared of all links posted on social media. One of the reasons that lists are still popular is that readers know what to expect. Lists can be easily scanned and skimmed through, enabling the reader to pick out specific parts of the article they want to read. List headlines should also state clearly what the reader will gain by reading your content.
Using questions, bold statements and poignant facts can help to arouse the reader’s curiosity, prompting them to click through and find out more. Understanding your audience will enable you to brainstorm ideas that will appeal to their interests. Adding a little suspense and mystery to your headlines is an effective way to boost your click rate.
Speak to Your Reader’s Fears
Fear is a powerful motivator used in many of the best marketing campaigns. People are often motivated to buy products and services in an attempt to alleviate their fears and insecurities. For example, advertisements for anti-wrinkle creams use the fear of ageing and looking older to help sell their products. Speaking to your reader’s fears and concerns can produce great results when used effectively.
The headline is the most important part of your content, as it will determine whether or not your audience reads the rest of your message. Using short headlines based around lists or numbers, arousing curiosity and speaking to your reader’s fears helps to encourage your audience to click through and read the rest of your content.