Post titles are essential to promoting your blog content. Believe it or not, it really makes the difference when a you carefully craft post title to work well, social media, in SEO, and most of all, with your readers. But how do you do it? Actually, it's not as hard as you think. With just a few tips to keep in mind writing posts titles that get people to click on your links is as easy as pie.
If you don't believe me. Give the tips a try, and test them. You can use tools like bit.ly to track the post titles, and you can see which post titles get more clicks. If you're using a newsletter service like Mailchimp, you can test with A/B split testing to see which headlines get more opens. While each person's blog is different, I've found the tips below to increase click rates quite significantly, sometimes as much as the difference between 100 clicks and 1,200 clicks.
Make sure the post title reflects the content of the post:
Fashion bloggers love puns and cute titles…hey, the fashion industry does that. But when it comes to the digital world where people scan and search (using keywords) people are not going to find your post if the title doesn't reflect the copy. But don't worry, there are ways to be creative when it comes to writing titles!
Keep titles short and sweet:
Twitter, Facebook, short attention spans… You want your readers to get your post title in the glance of an eye…yes, a glance. Even shortened links take up 20 characters, and if you include space for a RT and your handle, you'll have less than 100 characters for your title.
Go beyond labels… Include a verb:
Merely labeling your post gives your readers an excuse to pass on clicking through. “Awesome Shoes” is ok, but “Awesome Shoes You Can Wear This Summer.” Is better. People respond to actions, even better a call to actions.
Use “power words” to grab attention:
Words like “free” and “easy” work for a reason. People are always looking for free and easy ways to solve problems, and if you can help them out, they'll be enticed to click. But it doesn't stop there, any word that provokes emotion or urgency in your title. Other power words include: best, top, reasons, worst, now…
Make a promise with your title (and keep it in the post):
“Get rid of muffin top forever” and post about how you can really get rid of muffin top. DIY posts are a good example of promises and delivered promises. Making a promise in the post title implies the post is going to help the reader, giving them a reason to click through.
Include keywords in your post title:
A vast majority of traffic still comes from search engines, and post titles that contain keywords not only make sure your post comes up when people are looking for content that's in your post, it shows the users that your post is exactly what they're looking for. Your post might be about summer shoes, but if it's titled, “What I Wore to the Beach” it may not show up in search, and even if it did, someone who has never been to your blog before may not click because the result did not show what they searched for.
Ask a question:
Asking questions is a great way to pique someone's curiosity. It also opens up your post for discussion.
Solve a problem:
Say you have the answer everyone is looking for… where to find the best deals, how to find the perfect fit of jeans, if your posts solves a problem, reflect that in the post title.
Stir a controversy:
People love drama. While this can be great for your blog, or blow up in your face, if you have a controversial point of view it will get people talking. Yesterday, I read an post on Fashionista about how Debrorah Neeldman at T Magazine promoted a post by Suzy Menkes as the end of “slut clothes” being as the word “slut” is highly charged, Faran Krencil gives her reasons for why it's not ok to use that term.
Include a number:
List posts work. But then again, any number works, a percentage works as well. Numbers give your readers a sense of reality to your post, even if it's “7 Reasons Why Unicorns Rule” they know they'll find seven reasons why an imaginary creature has garnered positive opinions. If you have either conducted a study, or found a study, finding a statistic to put in your headline ie. “Bloggers Influence 31% of Online Purchases.” instead of “Bloggers Influence People to Buy” something I did last week, but looking at the difference in the Tweets that included the number as opposed to the ones that did not, I should have went with the number:
31% of consumers say blogs influence what they buy. Yet, brands spend a sliver of their budgets on blogger campaigns. bit.ly/10dsK6t
— IFB(@_IFB) March 25, 2013
— IFB(@_IFB) March 25, 2013
Most of all, give your readers a reason to click. While your readers do care about you, but they care more about themselves, and how your post can improve their lives in some way. Whether it be 10 things to brighten your day, or how to wear vertical stripes without looking like Beetlejuice, including some compelling reason for readers to click will get them to your site. Now, they just have to read your post!
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