January 31, 2013
Do Your Blog Headlines Suck?
Posted on the Arketi Group blog on January 30th by Mary Rose Macaranas
Your first impulse might be to say, “No, my headlines are great,” and I don’t blame you. If you’re getting comments, visitors and interacting with your readers—that’s great! But if you’re writing lengthy sentences and intentionally stuffing your blog headlines with keywords, hashtags and big names—not so great.
While there is a fine line between including keywords for SEO purposes and writing for humans who need something catchy to grab their attention, most of us fall closer to one end of the spectrum or the other. After reading a recent Ragan article listing 12 tips to writing snappy headlines for your blog, I used a fine comb to review a few of my favorite and more popular blogs. Here are the top three rules in headline writing I’ve found broken the most.
- Be creative – Boring headlines just won’t cut it anymore. People are constantly scanning their emails, social media feeds, RSS feeds, advertisements, etc. and the first thing that has to catch their eye is your headline. Be creative and note that if you don’t give them a reason to read your blog, who else will?
- Be tastefully raucous – This is a tough one that is completely up to the discretion of the writer. But think of the magazine headlines at the cash register that catch your attention such as “Easy abs diet” or “How to avoid vacation perils & pitfalls.” Your headline must offer the reader something he/she wants or needs, but keep it simple. If the thought makes you uneasy, run a few tests by including racier words and see if traffic or comments increase.
- Know your audience – Are you writing for small businesses that require a more professional tone? Or, are your readers mommy bloggers who are conscious about brands, details and active on social media? If you want your blog to be a part of the community, write relatable headlines in the community’s language to attract and engage.
These top three rules to writing better headlines for your blog are simple and easy to implement if you aren’t already doing so. This way, the next time someone asks you how your blog is doing, you can hopefully say that traffic has increased because of your snappy headlines.