4 Insider Tips for Crafting Killer Headlines

January 23, 2024

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Are you struggling to get your content noticed? You might have an amazing blog, but without a killer headline to grab readers’ attention, it might never get the clicks and conversions it deserves. That’s why it’s absolutely vital to write killer headlines that sparkle on the page and make people want to click.

4 Tips for Writing Magnetic Headlines

Of course, writing a great headline can be just as challenging as writing a great article. It takes time, experience, and a little understanding of consumer psychology. Fortunately, there are quite a few go-to techniques you can use to write headlines that almost guarantee clicks. 

Here are four tips for writing compelling headlines that will supercharge your blogs.

1. Include Numbers

As much as people like to complain about math and how difficult it can sometimes be to learn, that doesn’t stop them from engaging more with numbers in their headlines. And if that’s surprising, the actual stats might stagger you. Studies show that featuring a number in a headline can improve engagement and clickthrough rate by up to 36%

Here’s an example. “10 Influencer Tips for Creating Engaging TikTok Content” vs. “Make Your TikTok Videos Go Viral: Here’s How!” The second headline conveys the topic well and indicates that the blog may contain valuable information. But it still isn’t as engaging as the first option.

Why? Because when you include a number in your headline, it conveys length and brevity. It lets readers know your content is scannable before clicking on the blog. It also indicates that the blog will be much easier to read, which is super important.

Remember that when people search for things online, they usually look for quick, easy-to-read answers. So, as silly as it may sound, they love blogs that don’t require extensive reading, which is why they go for scannable content (if they leave the Google search page at all). Also, when you include a number in your headline, you should always use the number format; don’t spell it out. 

2. Ask Thoughtful Questions

If you want readers to engage with your content, you have to give them something to engage with. That’s why headlines with thoughtful or thought-provoking questions that concisely convey your article’s topic without getting verbose are super successful. Now, that’s a complicated sentence, so let’s break that down a little bit.

  • Ask Questions: People are naturally curious. Most likely, if anyone comes across your blog, it’s because they’re on a search engine asking questions. That might even be how you found this blog in the first place! So, if you want to pique a reader’s interest, you have to appeal to their inquisitive nature.
  • Convey the Topic: When you ask questions in your headline, they should be super relevant to your topic. Don’t try to get tricky or defy reader expectations. 
  • Have the Answer: Also, if you ask a question in your headline, you should also provide the answer in a clear, concise way. They’re clicking on your blog because they want that answer, so it’s your responsibility to provide it.
  • Keep it Short: Research indicates that headlines perform best when they’re around 60 characters, which is generally between 8 and 14 words. The longer your headline, the more people have to read, and the less likely they are to engage. So, no matter the type of blog you’re writing, your goal with your headline should be to capture your reader’s attention quickly and concisely. 

3. Target Emotion

Emotional marketing, also known as “emotional advertising,” is a marketing strategy that aims to create an emotional connection between a brand and its customers. It essentially involves targeting people’s emotions by using things like humor, nostalgia, empathy, fear, or anger to elicit engagement.

And the crazy thing is – it works! People are emotional by nature, and this type of marketing utilizes an aspect of consumer psychology to essentially manipulate people into responding a certain way. So, when we suggest that you target a reader’s emotions with headlines, that’s exactly what we’re talking about. And from a statistical standpoint, the effectiveness of emotional marketing is absolutely staggering:

Also, it’s important to note that the type of emotions that trigger the best results aren’t usually positive. In fact, research indicates that headlines with just a single negative-oriented word can increase the clickthrough-rate by 2.3%. So, if you want to improve your blog engagement, try writing headlines that evoke a strong emotional response.

How to Effectively Use Emotion Marketing

Before we continue, we’d also like to point out that while negative-oriented words can effectively grab attention and elicit an emotional response, it’s important to use them appropriately. If you overly rely on fear or negativity to engage with readers, you’ll create a reputation centered around fear-baiting and negativity. 

So, even though the science behind negative orientation is strong, we do not recommend making that your platform. Instead, when you target your audience’s emotions, make your intentions clear. You’re addressing a problem, not fanning the flames. In fact, you should also try to provide actionable solutions or positive perspectives that leave the reader feeling empowered and inspired.

Unless your brand profits from anxiety, fear, or anger, you shouldn’t center your blog strategy around those emotions. Otherwise, readers will start associating your brand or business with those terms.

4. Imply Urgency!

In our high-tech, fast-moving world, people are constantly bombarded with new information and dazzling distractions. So, it’s not easy to grab their attention. But similar to emotional marketing, people are also highly motivated by time, scarcity, and urgency. And when you imply a sense of urgency in your headlines, you can immediately catch a reader’s attention.

How much time do I have left? If I wait too long, will I miss out? Is something happening right now that I don’t know about? These are the types of questions you can pose to your audience to imply urgency and make them more likely to engage. 

Scarcity Implies Urgency Because Scarcity is Scary

Dr. Robert Cialdini talks about this when he discusses the “scarcity principle of persuasion,” which refers to people’s likelihood to assign value to products that are rarer or more difficult to obtain. According to a survey conducted by HubSpot, 45% of respondents report that scarcity makes them want to learn more about a product. 

The same principle applies to headlines. Whether it’s information, deals, products, or exclusive offers, people simply don’t want to miss out. So, if you can make your audience feel like they’ll miss out on something if you don’t engage with your blog, you’ve done your job!

To accomplish that, we recommend using time-sensitive language in your headlines, like “limited time offer,” “act now,” or “don’t miss out.” You can also create a sense of scarcity by mentioning limited availability or high demand. Or you can use numbers to indicate some sort of limitation, whether that be time, quantity, or availability.

Start Writing Amazing Headlines Today

It’s not easy to write killer headlines. But if you use the techniques outlined above, you can create headlines that jump off the page and drive people to click and interact. So, what are you waiting for? Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to enhance your blogs with magnetic headlines proven to drive clicks and conversions!