With close to three million blog posts published each day, getting content in front of the right reader is a challenge.The key is a juicy, eye-popping blog post title that compels the reader to pay attention and take action.While content and title are equally important, a catchy title is what gets them in the front door.It gives them a sneak peek into what they'll find once inside.Without a compelling title, your content is for naught.Below is my three-step formula to crafting incredibly catchy blog titles and that perfect headline every time!
3-Step Blog Title Formula
Step 1: Create a Swipe File
A swipe file is an easy way to capture ideas, thoughts, and inspiration for future blog posts. It can also provide much-needed motivation on those days when you feel less than creative.As Copyblogger says,
"Smart copywriters use good tools to make themselves more productive, and one of those “power” tools is the swipe file."
Not familiar with a swipe file? It's simple!As you peruse the web, pay attention to blog post titles that make you take notice. Now add that title to your swipe file.Whether you choose to create this in Word, Google Drive or Evernote, make it simple and easy to access.The key is tocreate a running list of potential blog titlesthat you can use as creative inspiration on those days you suffer from writers block.
Swipe File Formula:
- Revisit your swipe file for creative inspiration.
- Play around with keywords or phrases and work it into your topic.
- Run your blog post title through the "Advanced Marketing Institute Headline Analyzer" to grade your title. Not familiar with it? Learn more in "8 Ideas to Boost Your Latest Blog Post."
Step 2: Know the Rules
There are simple rules I follow when creating blog post titles.
- Simple wins! Keep your titles short and to the point. My goal is seventy characters or less.
- Make them clickable! Inject humor, draw on emotion or solve a problem. You want the reader to immediately relate and understand the purpose behind and value in your article.
- Include your keyword or phrase in an organic and natural way.
- Never ever mislead the reader with a title that has nothing to do with the content.
- Communicate a benefit that your reader cannot live without.
- Have fun! Add your personality to the title. Just because it needs to be search engine friendly doesn't mean it can't be playful.
Let's break down the blog post title below.
- 3 (how many tips the reader can expect)
- Smart (who doesn't want to be smart?)
- Google+ (specific)
- Strategies (what the reader will receive) to
- Grow Your Online Community (what the reader will learn)
Step 3: Get Writing
Now that you've created your swipe file and know the rules behind a blog post title that pops, it's time to get writing.Below are eight blog post title ideas to light your fire and help you craft a perfect headline!
1. Make it Personal
A blog title that speaks to a personal need or situation can be very effective.For example, "How You Can Put the Love Back in Your Relationship" not only solves a problem, but relates to readers on an intimate level.
2. Make Life Easier or Better
Think about your product or service from the consumer's perspective.What problem does it solve and how can you best get that point across in an easy and efficient manner?
3. Encourage Action
Blog post titles should encourage action and inspire your reader to click-through. Know what triggers that action and how you can best position your content.
4. Lose the Jargon
Just because you speak in industry jargon, doesn't mean your consumer will understand it.Lose the jargon and focus instead on making your title reader and consumer friendly.
5. Be Interesting
What makes your blog post intriguing?Being an avid reader myself I can tell you how disappointing it is to read a compelling blog title only to find the content lacking. Keep you title interesting, but true to what they'll find once inside.
6. Be Original
You put your own unique spin on blog content, so why wouldn't you do the same for your title?Remember: there may not be any unique ideas left, but there's always room for your unique perspective.
7. Be Honest
I mentioned this point above, but it's important enough to repeat. Always make sure your blog post title is in alignment with your content.Misleading blog post titles create distrust and frustration, two lasting feelings that no blogger wants their reader to walk away with.
8. Speak Directly to Your Audience
Know your audience and do your research. Ask yourself:
- Who am I trying to reach?
- What problem does my post solve?
- Is this topic valuable?
- Would I click-through if I was the consumer?
One Last Thought
There is a lot of talk about keywords "being dead" lately. I totally disagree. While I'm no SEO specialist, I do know enough about keyword research to understand that they're still extremely powerful when used correctly.Insert them into your title when appropriate, but maintain the readability. You're writing for people, and people want a title that makes sense. Not one that looks like a bunch of gobbly gook. And yes, that's the technical term.
What's your secret to catchy blog titles? I'd love to hear it!
About Rebekah Radice
Rebekah Radice, co-founder of BRIL.LA, has traded narcissism for purpose. When not driving growth, you'll find her tricking family into thinking she's Emeril Lagasse - likely covered in marinara. The spotlight was fun, but impact is better. These days she's using 20+ years of brand brilliance for good.