Writing Headlines is a skill and you can get better, find out how.
A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet, but what if they were called “Stenchblossums”?
Maybe you got the Simpsons reference, maybe you didn’t, that doesn’t matter. The point remains that the language we use is just as important as what we’re talking about.
Headlines will be seen more than the body text that you write. That’s why you should give headlines more of your time and attention. Additionally, if you are like most bloggers, you rely on organic search visits for your blog’s popularity.
Crafting better headlines will result in higher CTR (Click Through Rates) and will improve your SEO.
When it comes to web headlines you’ll want to think of it as a blend of art and science. It takes creativity but you can also measure your creation.
If you aren’t familiar with CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer you should definitely check it out.
What is your Headline’s Word Balance
If you followed the link and entered a headline from one of your articles, Word Balance was the first thing you saw.
This site breaks your title into four types of words. Learn about these word categories and start creating a balance in your headlines.
These words should make up 20 to 30 percent of your headline. Some examples of common words are:
Common words are just that, you commonly use them.
These types of words are the attention getter of your headline and they create the core of your headline. Some examples of these words:
These types of words should make up between 10 and 20 percent of your headline.
People relate to emotions much more than they do to statistics and facts, which is why you should always attempt to inject some emotion into your headline and your body content. 10 to 15 percent of your headline should have emotional words. Emotional words have been proven to help increase clicks and shares. Some examples are:
These words charge the expected content with related memories and prime readers to better relate to your content.
Advanced Marketing Institute Emotional Marketing
Try out this emotional marketing value headline analyzer to get a sense of the emotion your headline communicates. They cut your submission at 20 words but your headline should be much shorter than that anyway. After all, people only really read the first three and last three words.
Paste in your headline and pick the category that your headline pertains to. Choices are:
- Arts & Automotive
- Business & Professional Services
- Clothing & Accessories
- Community & Government
- Computers & Electronics
- Construction & Contractors
- Food & Dining
- Health & Medicine
- Home & Garden
- Industry & Agriculture
- Legal & Financial
- Media & Communications
- Personal Care & Services
- Real Estate
- Sports & Recreation
- Travel & Transportation
You will then receive an Emotional Marketing Value (EMV) which is a score based on the use of emotionally significant words. This database of impact words was gathered in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Dr.Hakim Chishti led this team through a deep analysis of various languages: Persian, Aramaic, Hebrew, Arabic, Urdu and others.
The copywriting pros often will have a score between 30% and 40%. The cream of the crop will have between 50% and 75% EMV words in their headline.
Your emotional words are grouped into three categories:
- Intellectual – These work best when extending a product or service that your prospect will evaluate.
- Empathetic – People resonate with these words and experience profoundly strong positive reactions.
- Spiritual – These are the most effective words and influence at a very deep level.
Along with your EMV percentage, you will see which group your words align with. For example – The headline “Be Happy and Understand How You Got That Way” got a score of 44.44% and aligned with intellectual. Since this headline deals with psychology and self-help I would want it to align with Empathetic and Spiritual, so it will need some work.
You should have at least one of these in your headline. These words grab attention and drive readers to action. Often times these are intense trigger words that a reader will have a strong connotation with.
Headlines That Work Well
It has been proven that certain types of headlines convert better than others. Headlines like:
- List posts
- Numbered lists posts work especially well. The more time you put into your list the more likely it will get shared by readers.
- Become a Search Engine Pro with these 20 Search Tips
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- How To’s / How Not To
- People often turn to the internet to learn how to accomplish something.
- Alternatively, people want to know how to avoid something undesirable and get confirmation that they know the right way to do something.
- How to Get More Relevant Traffic for Free
- How to Avoid Google Penalties with 3 Simple Tricks
- How to Stay Healthy without Breaking the Bank
- How to Get Out of Debt and Keep Your Sanity
- Self-Actualization AKA Get What You Want
- People want to be healthy, wealthy, and happy. Write an article that highlights these life goals and get massive click-through-rates.
- How to Stay Healthy without Going Broke
- Get Out of Debt and Stay Happy
- Get Healthy with these 10 Diet Tips
- The Warren Buffet Way to Wealth
- Stop Stressing with These Mindfulness Techniques
- Be Happy and Understand How You Got That Way
- Warning headlines
- Secret revealing headlines
- Controversy – ex – Why Google Doesn’t Want You To Know This
- When you write about a controversial topic you can draw people in by creating an air of mystery. These types of posts can lead to great comment discussions and encourages social sharing.
- Facts, Stats, and Infographics
- Trends and Predictions
- Use Wacky Adjectives
- Emotional headlines
- urgency – ex – 9 Powerful Statistics Every Business Owner Should Know
If you want your whole headline to be visible on the search engine results page, make sure your length is less than 65 characters. From those 65 characters, it has been shown that the ideal length for a headline is 6 words.
According to authoritative sources, people read the first three and last three words of a headline. So if you choose to make headlines longer than 6 words, make sure your keywords are in the beginning or end of your headline. Remembering this will help you increase your click-through-rates (CTR) on organic search results. This is specifically a user experience (UX) concept.
When it comes to SEO, the first words in the <title> tag are viewed as more important by search engines. For this reason, you should put your targeted keywords as close to the beginning of your headline as possible.
If I’m targeting SEO tools, the headline “10 SEO Tools Every Marketer Needs” would work better than “Every Marketer Needs These 10 SEO Tools“.
CoSchedule WordPress Plugin
This WP plugin enables click-to-tweet boxes for your website. Check out the plugin by visiting the link for CoSchedule’s Twitter WordPress Plugin page. Additionally, CoSchedule created an editorial calendar for WordPress which you could also investigate.
As of Sept 28th, both plugins have not been tested with the most recent version of WordPress so proceed with caution. Make sure to backup your site before installing any new plugins, especially ones that are untested.
Here is an example of the Click to Tweet with Call to Action Box used on Jon Loomer’s Facebook Marketers website.
The other plugin is all about scheduling your content publishing and enables an easy management interface for WordPress. Here is a quick example of how it works.
This plugin is ideal if you manage a large content marketing team and you want maximum productivity.
CoSchedule Offerings and Integrations
The main goal of CoSchedule is to help you streamline your content publishing process. Along with their Two WordPress Plugins, their product features include:
- Marketing Calendar
- Social Media Scheduling
- WordFlow Management
- Google Docs
Here are some of their other partner integrations, which all happen to be at the top of my digital marketing list.
From left to right the icons are:
- Google Docs
- Google Calendar
- Google Analytics
- I think you know the rest – Just in Case – Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Tumblr
They offer a 14 day free trial without the requirement of a credit card so you can try risk-free.
An editorial calendar with sophisticated integrations is just what a content publishing team needs to be more productive.
Just remember to give plenty focus and thought to your headlines. They are vital because if they don’t convert, the dilgently created content won’t get read.