It can’t be said strongly enough the subject line of your email and social media post headline is what prompts a reader to click-through and read.
You’ve spent time and energy brainstorming ideas and writing stellar content. But if the audience isn’t tempted to click on your links or read your articles, all of the effort has been for nothing. Your message can’t get through to your audience and you can’t get the traffic you need to get the sales you need to support your family.
While article content and subject matter are important, you’ve probably realized by now that the headline/subject line is what really snags attention. But writing a good headline isn’t always easy.
Here are some simple tips to help you create dynamic headlines that get the right kind of attention:
Concentrate On The Headline / Subject Line
Drayton Bird, a top marketing expert, notes that while 80% of viewers will read a headline, only 20% stop to read the body copy.
So, why is it that most companies are spending the majority of their time crafting the content? It seems only reasonable that more time should be spent in creating a title that draws attention and results in an increase of readers.
Swap Overused Words for Power Words
There are a lot of adjectives and verbs that are overused in advertising today. If you want to get attention from your audience, you need to make your articles stand out.
Writing headlines/subject lines with overused words will make your content seem generic. Some of these common words include:
On the other hand, the power words that will evoke more feeling in your audience include terms like:
Deliver On Your Promise
In social media the top posts are short, engaging, and valuable. Usually top posts will include a short quip with a follow-up link.
Your post titles and email subject lines should similarly captivate your audience and give them a taste of what to expect from the content. post titles and email subject lines should appeal to your target audience and push them to want more without overselling the content.
If your headline states a claim such as “World’s Greatest Marketing Tips,” then you’d better back it up with something fantastic and unexpected.
Your audience is going to build a mental reputation for your brand based on how you title and advertise your content.
It helps if you avoid subjective terms in headlines (“Number One…” or “Best”), sticking instead to objective, quantifiable language. Talk directly to your reader and be honest about what your content can do.
Don’t under-deliver or over-promise. Anyone can make claims that their list is the best or their newborn baby is the cutest – these claims get little credence, and for good reason.
Play On Emotions
There are certain emotions that evoke a strong response. These emotions are deeply rooted in each of us and are often what draws us to continue reading an article. Interestingly enough and contrary to how most of us like to do business, negative emotions in headline/subject line’s get more opens than positive headline/subject line’s. If you speak from a pain that people want solved you’re more likely to get click-through’s.
Some of the top emotions you could draw upon in your headline/subject line’s would include:
Avoid Looking Like Spam
It’s especially important for email purposes that your headline/subject line don’t look spammy. People tend to ignore spam as the worst form of advertising.
This means using spell check to catch typos as well as avoiding symbols in the headline (*%@!$). It also means you should never use all uppercase letters, as that APPEARS TO BE SHOUTING!
Keep It Short And Simple
Always remember SAS (Short and Simple) when writing your headline. Usability research has shown that most people scan headlines and only absorb the first three words and last three words.
On a mobile device you have about 30 – 35 characters in a subject line to grab your readers attention. That’s pretty tight especially when you consider that personalized subject lines get more opens.
This doesn’t mean every headline/subject line will be under 30 characters, but every word should count and readers should be intrigued.
Part of keeping the title simple means using language your audience can understand in a flash and being specific with your title. Sometimes specificity will push your title past 30 characters, and that’s okay. Use the pre-header area of your email to get even more attention for your email. This gives you up to an additional 80 characters for “subject line” content.
Short only means cutting out the unnecessary fluff of your subject line to increase impact.
Today’s headline/subject line’s are like a billboard – you only get a few seconds to make an impact and slow the driver on the virtual highway of their newsfeed or inbox.
What are you doing to make sure your headline/subject line’s are everything they should be? What headline/title/subject line have given you the highest click-through’s and engagement rates? Please share we’d love to hear your results!