So you’re finally here, you’re about to write your first blog. If you’re following a content calendar, you’ll likely have an idea of what your theme is going to be, and as such a topic should already be with you right now. However, as with any other writer struggling with writers’ block, sometimes making the perfect title for your blog post can be difficult. This much is understood, and we’re here to help.
Why dedicate an entire article to writing a title, you ask? It’s important to take note at this point that page titles are actually the most important element of a page, second only to content. If your title isn’t appealing to the reader, it’s likely they’ll skip your entire article. This means you have almost a second to make sure your titles are appealing to your readers.
1.) Make sure it’s engaging and it catches the attention of your readers. A good title should be empathic, intriguing, or actionable. This is challenging to do at first, but try to check your titles the way a reader would see them: is it interesting? Is it something they are willing to read because it answers their problems?
- An actionable title is something you can act upon after reading. For instance, “How To Write Essays… Even If You Hate Essays” is actionable because it provides a solution to a problem (in this case, writing essays). “How To” articles are normally safe for these types of situations, though some titles can offer “How To” angles without aiming to use “How To” in their titles.
- An intriguing title is something that sparks curiosity. When something is intriguing or sparks your interest, it can motivate you to pursue it out of sheer curiosity. “The Stalker’s Guide To Social Media Metrics” can be intriguing because “stalkers” are normally associated with creepiness, and not something you’d expect to appear in a topic like social media metrics. So how exactly is a “stalker” going to do social media metrics?
- An empathic title is something you can relate to, or want to relate to. When something is empathic, it’s something that catches your emotions. “Content Marketing: Master It With This F***ING EASY Trick!” In this case, it’s not an ‘easy” trick, it’s a “F***ING EASY” trick. The emotion is evidently there, and it’s intriguing because you have no idea what that trick is – but it’s certainly supposed to be surprising.
2. ) Set expectations properly. Don’t write an eye-catching headline that wouldn’t deliver the kind of content it promises, as it can put your blog in bad light. Try to find a point in your article that is worth a “Wow!” moment, and try to leverage your title from there. Setting the right expectations from readers can help you engage with them much better.
3.) Short is great. When you make a title, try to make sure you keep your titles within 70 characters. This allows the title to appear in its full length to search engines. If you do have to exceed 70 characters, try to make sure the main point of the title is within the first few words. In the image below, all of the titles fit the space allotted by the search engine.
4.) Do include keywords, but don’t include too much of it. Keywords help give search engines that push to help them realize that your content is related to something people search in search engines. This is why titles with keywords can help you gain that kind of traction. However, try to use tools such as Google Adwords’ Keyword Tool and use keywords for your titles that have reasonable metrics.
The Bottomline: Punchy, Catchy, Entertaining
Remember that when it comes to titles, it’s not always about “capturing interest no matter what.” It has to be punchy, catchy, and entertaining, yes, but it can’t sacrifice its integrity and purpose. This means thinking about the title means assessing not just your topic, but the niche it’s in and your company brand in question. Will this title be the kind of title your readers will need but at the same time speak for your company? These are just two of the many questions you have to consider. Getting these two done, however, will likely give you that boost you need to come up with your perfect title.
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