7 Things You Get Wrong About Clickable Headlines

You read the blogs on how to write headlines that will make readers click. You took their advice to heart but somehow didn’t get it quite right. Writing headlines is a tricky business and it’s really easy to go astray.

Here are some possible things you’re doing wrong in your headlines:

1. You Used Clickbait

It’s become common practice to write alluring headlines just to drive traffic to the site and then fail to deliver on the goods once the reader clicks. This is the worst type of marketing and the fastest way to make sure readers will hate you. If your headline reads “100 Best Movies for Teenagers” and the article is about a new app for watching movies on your laptop, you have committed clickbait.

2. You Tried To Focus On Benefits But Ended Up Sounding Salesy

Instead of focusing on the company, you’re supposed to focus on what the company can offer to the client. Okay, no problem. You did that. But somewhere along the way, you ended up sounding too much like a used car salesman: “Our Product Guarantees You’ll Lose Ten Pounds in 2 Weeks! Trust Us!” It’s a fine line between offering forth the gems of your business and looking like you’re dealing in rhinestones.

3. You Went Overboard On The Polemic Side And Now People Might Want To Sue You

You’re supposed to shock and awe the reader by picking polemic topics and weighing heavily on one side. But don’t go so far out there that you end up in a smear campaign. Avoid headlines like “Donald Trump is a Sexist, Racist, Moronic Pig”. Possible libel suit aside, ruining your reputation by being offensive and tacky aren’t worth headline clicks. Instead write something like, “Why Donald Trump is The Absolute Worst Choice for President”. Okay, now you’re talking about his qualifications for the position he’s running for. That’s fair game.

4. You Simplified Too Much And Now Your Headline Sounds Generic

You’re supposed to write a headline that’s simple and gets to the point in six words or less. But instead of sounding punchy and exciting, it fell flat and doesn’t give enough detail. For example, “Pasta – It’s For Dinner” which leaves the reader with no clue as to what the article is actually about – could be a study on how many people are eating pasta or a recipe or a guide for students on a budget. Instead, try something like “Live for Pasta? 8 Irresistible Recipes”. This headline will draw in the readers looking for pasta recipes which is what your post is about.

5. Your Headline Is Great But Your Content Doesn’t Match It

The statistics about headline importance certainly put the pressure on to write a great one. You’re supposed to spend half the time you spent writing the article coming up with the perfect headline. So, you did it. You wrote the absolute best headline ever. Except, you worked so hard on your headline that you forgot to write a great article. You’ve basically wasted the headline then, as people will be disappointed that the article doesn’t match the expectations created by the headline. Keep the content quality high and follow through on the promise of the headline.

6. You Used An Open Loop For Something That’s Dull

You’re supposed to drive readers wild with curiosity by stating something crazy. So, of course, they have to click. The worst thing you can do after leading them to click is to let them down with some boring information. If you write a headline “You’ll Never Believe What This Naked Man Did At the North Pole” and then write an article that says he got dressed, your readers may possibly litter your comments section with personal threats. Don’t take precious clicks for granted by disappointing your reader. Deliver on the goods in a spectacular way.

7. You Used Questionable Stats

Stats and numbers give credibility to your article and make you sound like an expert on the subject. But if your stats are actually from a dubious source or, even worse, they’re made up, then you really messed up this headline type. Make sure your stats are reputable otherwise you run the risk of destroying the credibility you were trying to build.

About The Author

Janice Kersh is a dedicated blogger, professional writer at EssayWriter.Pro and passionate content examiner. She provides writing assistance to blogging newbies, students and young authors. Circle her on Google+.

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7 Things You Get Wrong About Clickable Headlines was first posted on September 8, 2015 at 1:55 pm.