Just one little line can help bring your blog significantly more traffic. That's the post title.
Joyce from Joyful Outfits commented:
Adding numbers to the title definitely made a difference! I started writing the post by centering around making an outfit quickly but after I read through the articles you linked, I changed it to making outfits under 5 minutes so it’s less vague. And after doing so, this post was pinned and repinned on Pinterest more than usual.
Focusing on the Fashion Blogging niche, this would be a perfect opportunity to discuss our culture of post titling as it relates to our content and our marketing efforts. In my previous posts, I said I would review 5 “great post titles” and 5 that “needed work” but looking at the submissions, I've decided to categorize them, and give feedback on each of the 10.
The “How to”
This post title from Joyful Outfits does three things, 1.) It makes a promise, “under 5 minutes” 2.) It's a “How to” with “5 Steps to Making an Outfit and 3.) At 43 characters, it's short and sweet.
I was doubly delighted when I clicked on the link and found the “How to” clearly laid out, easy to follow, and since it took under a minute to read, she demonstrated a sense of speed and clarity.
The Thoughtful Outfit Post
I call these, “thoughtful outfit posts.” They're when the blogger puts their outfit into the context of a personal experience and/or a trend. I really enjoyed this post.
The post title: Alliteration is great, clever, and it's short and sweet. However, I wasn't sure exactly what I would be clicking on. “Lessons in Lingerie” could be a lot of things. Would it be about bra sizing? Functional versus pretty? Whale tails?
Suggestions: Clarify the post with the subject and preferably a verb to give it more punch. “Forget the Etiquette: Bare the Bra,” “Hey Bra! Should it show?” (guess this only makes sense if you're familiar with Hawaiian Pigdin)
The Culturally Relevant Title
When I saw this post title, I was instantly intrigued. Everyone loves talking about Michelle Obama's fashion choices, and with the trend of elites wearing high street fashion (ahem Kate Middleton) there could be a post that was a great commentary.
The post title: Uses brand names, cultural icons, and stirs a controversy “Why J. Crew isn't…” It could be very juicy!
Suggestions: There appeared to be only one line about Michelle Obama in the post. I felt the post title was a bit misleading, because it suggested it was more J. Crew and Michelle Obama, not J. Crew and the blogger. While the post title is great, a misleading post title can turn off new readers. I would suggest personalizing this post title, “How Michelle Obama turned me onto J. Crew”
I love puns! They're fun, clever, and this one delivers. The post itself was loaded with clear clutches, which to the readers it would be a delight to click on title to find such an array.
The post title: The great thing about this post title is that incorporates two keywords, “clear” and “clutch” and it's a pun.
Suggestions: Not to use all caps. It kind of looks spammy… We get it just as well in regular caps. But otherwise, nice!
The Personalized Tutorial
Whether it you wear plus size or not, spicing up the LBD is an issue for us all.
The post title: This post title addresses a problem we all face, and how to fix it. It's specifically about the little black dress, and is telling us that the post will deliver tips on how to make the classic wardrobe stable stand out.
Suggestions: I found the usage of “Dressing up the…” to be a bit passive. A stronger post title would be “Dress up the…” but then it would be using two of the same words (even if they have different meanings, “dress” the verb and “dress” the noun). I would use a different word, like, “Glam,” or something along those lines to differentiate. The post was good, but it could become an evergreen post, if she ad incorporated several ways to make that LBD pop.
The Pop Culture Posts
These two posts both address different aspects of pop culture, fashion on television and music in film. They take two very different approaches to the same thing, how to get a piece of pop culture in your hands.
The post title: “Buy It Now! Clothes Featured on The Carrie Diaries” has a few key points in the title to make you want to click. If you're a Carrie Diaries fan, you want to know what she is wearing, and how to buy it. I liked the “Buy It Now!” portion, as it's a call to action, surpisingly I did not see one so blatant in the submissions. It's effective in catching your attention.
Suggestion for “Buy It Now!” Believe it or not, this can be made more specific. I would add in a numbers to hone this in. “Buy It Now! 3 Carrie Diaries Looks Under $70.” It's pretty compelling to find accessible clothing on TV for that price, no?
The post title: “The Glittery Great Gatsby Soundtrack Drops uses two keywords, “Great Gatsby” and “soundtrack” to make this post searchable. Alliteration is always catchy, so I can see where this would be appealing.
Suggestions for “Gatsby” Make it punchier by shortening the post title. Also, I don't really know what “Drops” means, guessing it's another word for songs and I'm just old. Looking at this post I see a great opportunity to add in a number. It's good to be clever, but you don't want your readers Googling your post title just to find out what you mean. “Hear Now: 14 Songs from the Great Gatsby Soundtrack” might be a better fit.
Getting advice from the experts is always a compelling read. Post titles that divulge secrets from the experts, even more compelling!
The post title: This post title suggests there will be something racy in the content. It uses power words like “Top” Experts” “Secrets” all to pique our interest.
Suggestion: This post is both descriptive and vague. It tells me I will be accessing secret information about “racing fashion” but I don't know what “racing fashion” is right off the bat. A quick Google search informed me of two things… Racing Fashion is what you wear to horse races, and that it's not what my middle-class family wears to go bet on the horses. I'm so embarrassed.
The Product Review
You can do Ombré at home now? For a klutz like me that's big news! Product reviews are a great way to build in evergreen traffic, especially when it comes to beauty products. Because each beauty product says it performs magic, and well, without reviews it's hard to find out if they're telling the truth.
The post title: Has keywords, DIY and it's short and to the point. The readers will know exactly what they are clicking on with this post title!
Suggestion: Add the word, “Review” in the post title, and the exact name of the product. Believe me, there will be people at the drugstore with their smartphones checking the reviews on this before buying. Either that or I'm the only one actually showrooming. “L'Oreal Paris Wild Ombre Review: DIY Hair Trend” could work.
The Controversial Post
Getting controversy right is difficult. While getting controversial on your blog is an excellent way to get your readers talking and to get blood pumping. When addressing a tough topic, you run the risk of not communicating exactly what you mean, coming off the wrong way, missing the point, offending, etc. Here, post titles are especially important. Often times because with controversy often attracts trolls, and if your post title doesn't exactly reflect your point, you run the risk that the trolls will bomb your post with nasty comments without actually reading the post, or worse, looking for a way to twist your words. This post, when I read the title, I took a deep breath. Knowing how hot this topic is, and also knowing how the body image conversation has focused on a particular body type in the past few years, I could see frustration.
The post title: It uses some powerful words, Proud, Hypocrisy, Bashing, Weight, etc. No matter what your leaning is, you know it's going to be controversial.
Suggestion: This post talks about the difference between being thin and being anorexic, about how we should reevaluate what “healthy” body image means. Saying “Thin & Proud” may ruffle feathers, even if all women should be proud of their figures. I would focus on examples of how the press/media/culture is confusing anorexia with natural thinness, and reflect that in the post title.
I found that reading through all of these… three things successful post titles have in common:
The rest are little tricks to get more clicks! Which isn't a bad thing, no?
What do you think? What would you suggest to make the post titles pop?
[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]