Download the worksheet here.
Hey, everybody. Today’s lesson is about writing blog headlines.
It’s similar to last week’s lesson, which was on subject lines for emails. If you missed that one, click here.
But today’s is all about blogs. I say that they are similar because they both really have the same purpose, which is to get people to click into what you’ve sent them and read it, right?
The blog headline is designed to compel people to read the blog. So, with that knowledge, what I want to say up front is that as good as your headline is, the blog content actually has to be even better.
Don’t lose sight of that. You can’t just write amazing headlines and then have an underwhelming blog when somebody arrives at the link.
Otherwise, it’s a bait and switch. It’s the Mayweather vs. Paul fight. It doesn’t live up to the hype. It disappoints. People are left with a bad taste after they interact with your content.
So, as important as the headlines are, keep in mind the actual content has got to support it too.
Now, over the next couple of weeks, we will be talking more about how to write those really great blogs, so stay tuned.
We are covering headlines first because it’s the first step. This is how you get people interested in what you’ve said and get them to come to your site and read more about it.
So, first things first. Let’s dig in.
There are so many different types and categories and general ways that you can talk about writing great blog headlines. We can’t cover them all in a short video, so I’m going to give you four.
As you might expect, this is telling someone how to do something. For example, “How to save for retirement without paying taxes.”
Make people feel like if they don’t read what you’ve written, they’re missing out. For example, “Nine out of 10 people don’t know this about investing in a 401(k).”
Give people something to ponder. “What’s the best state to retire in?” (I know some of you are having an aneurysm right now because I ended that in a preposition. 🤷🏼♂️ Deal with it.)
Use second person pronouns, which is the word “you.” It helps people to see themselves in what you’re writing much more easily. There have been studies done that show that second person pronouns contextualize the information that somebody is receiving and they apply it to themselves more easily. So use that when you can. For example, “Why you should start saving for your child’s college”
One thing that we didn’t talk about with subject lines, which is critical for headlines, is search engine optimization, which sounds like a big, scary term.
In a word, it’s not. Let’s dig into it.
What you want when you’re thinking about SEO for your blogs is to think about the keywords that you’re using that you want to rank for, that you want to prioritize in your content, but you don’t want to keyword stuff.
You just don’t want to just jam in your keyword in a weird way into your headline. It needs to be natural.
If there’s only one thing that you take away from this video, it’s always be thinking about your readers first. Good marketing is empathetic marketing.
Put yourself in your readers’ shoes. Put yourself in their place and think about how they talk about the issues that they are trying to learn about and write to that perspective. That said, if you can, it’s good practice to put the keyword(s) in your headline.
One thing to think about, though, as we’re talking through headlines and this is another reminder for you, keep your headlines under 70 characters.
While you’re thinking about those keywords, you also have to be thinking about keeping things short. The reason for this is Google shows a maximum of 70 characters in a headline in each search result, and so you do not want your blog headline to get cut off and have ellipses so somebody can’t read the entire thing.
You want to show as much as possible that full line all at once.
As Shakespeare once said, brevity is the soul of wit.
Another thing to know is most websites and content management systems will let you write a different on-page headline than SEO title. So, you can write one thing for the blog title when it shows up in search results and write another for the on-page headline that shows up on that top for when you share it on social.
One last thing about writing blog headlines. You’ll see some advice out there that says to spend 2-5 times as much time writing your headlines as you do writing the blog content, and that’s great advice for copywriters and marketers. It’s not always super practical for a financial advisor like yourself who has all these other things to take care of in their business.
So, instead of focusing so much on just the time, you want to spend as much time as you need to find a headline that you really like.
Our recommendation is to always write at least three options for your blog, all in a different style. Let them sit for a day, if you can. Hopefully you’re far ahead enough of your publishing schedule that you can do that.
Let me set for a day, come back to them, revise them if you still don’t like them, and choose your favorite from there.
So there you go. A quick, dirty lesson on writing headlines for blogs. The important thing is keep it interesting.
What you’re trying to do is capture attention and get people’s eyes to stick on what you’re publishing so they come to your site and read more and start to interact with you.
Always put the reader first and let that guide you, and you’ll be successful.
There’s a quick worksheet to download just to give you a couple of reminders of some of the tips that were used in this video so you can have those ready the next time you write a blog and are trying to write that great attention-grabbing headline.
See you next week.
Clickable headlines is just one of our areas of expertise here at Three Crowns. If you’re ready to start writing blogs that grab readers’ attention, reach out to a member of our team today.