7 Quick Tips on the Best Performing Article Titles
In response to a members question:
“Any tips on subjects that catch your eye? Or how you work out what subjects are of particular interest to your audience apart from gut feeling or trial and error?”
The best titles are ones that capture the attention of your target market.
In todays world when scrolling through the vastness of the web, there is no time to waste on reading pointless articles, or anything that will waste your time. You need to know just from the title if there is any value in reading that article. Will it interest me? Will I be able to use the information to make money, or boost my social status or appearance? How will it help?
It is hard to compete for attention these days and if your titles aren’t up to scratch then your articles will never get read! That’s a big shame! No doubt you have put a lot of effort into the article, and the time it takes to write and images to go with it and so on.
So it’s down to your title… and honestly, how much time do you spend on it? Not much in comparison to the article most likely. In essence however it is the most important part, because the Title is the first interaction, if it is no good, nobody is going to click through to your post, let alone continue to click through to your website and buy from you. So you see the title IS rather important and you need to spend some more time on it! It’s well worth it. So here is our top tips on how to improve your title and get your articles read.
1. Know your audience. Do they like long articles, short articles, do they only want to know about one thing, do they like a bit of humour, or a more professional tone? The more you know about them, the more you can write a title to appeal to them.
2. Solve a problem. Give them a reason to read your article. By reading it, what will they learn? What problem will go away? Tell them in the title! Think about the top problems; saving money, saving time and also status.
3. Write your title first. Before you set off to writing your article, give yourself some focus, write a dummy title or summary first. Then when you have finished go back and adjust your article title. This is a great way of making sure you stay on track of giving people what they want. All too often an article you start to write goes off on a tangent and ends up as something else completely. At this point you cannot then re-write your article, and as a result the title changes to something less appealing to match the article.
4. Write a good article. Your title will inevitably have to describe your content, so in effect it too must hit the spot, you don’t want to lying or exaggerating about what’s in the article. Don’t just write about what you want either, write about what your audience wants and needs to know. So as best you can know your audience, their questions, their problems. Give them answers and they will just keep on reading all day long.
5. Play on time. Why do you think all those articles that start with, ‘7 tips on…’ or ‘5 Great Ways to…’ are so popular, it’s because they give the impression that it will be a quick read. Buzz words that are similar include; easy, quick, fast, simple, this one thing, and so on. Think about how you can incorporate them into your titles.
6. Proof read. Same goes for your article.
7. Change it. When you post out your article, for example on Twitter, you can see how many people click on your links (just go to analytics.twitter.com). This way you can try several different variations of the same title, and see which one gets the most clicks! Over time you will get to know what works best for your own audience.
ACTION: On your next article, we challenge you to spend the same amount of time on the title as you did the article.