Did you know that you have a higher chance convincing a gold fish to browse through your site than doing the same with your target audience or prospective customers? This is because a gold fish has a longer attention span (9 seconds) than an average internet user (8 seconds).
But of course, selling to sea creatures is not an option. This is where the importance of head-turning headlines comes in. You literally have milliseconds to convince your site visitors to browse through your content and later on, respond favorably to your call-to-action.
If you think your headlines need a makeover, here are five tips to help you craft headlines that hooks and persuades customers to read on.
Say it with Specificity
Your customers just don’t have the time and the patience to figure out what you’re trying to say. Vagueness is your enemy. When your write your headlines, be as specific and as concrete as possible. The rule of thumb is that headlines should be specific enough that your readers can actually form a mental image of what you are trying to say.
State a Value or Benefit
What’s in it for me? This is the question your visitors have when they go to your site. That being said, it is important that your headline contains a value or benefit statement to entice visitors to read on. Your headlines should convey the message that if they read on, they will find solutions to a relevant problem or concern.
Create a Sense of Urgency
Needless to say, good headlines need to be interesting. Great headlines however, are not only interesting, they are also irresistible. What this means is that your headlines should prompt a sense of immediacy among visitors to read your content now. Not later. Now.
According to experts, two of the strongest psychological and emotional motivators are curiosity and desire. Combine these two in your headlines and you’re leaving little room for your customers to repel your content.
Offer Something New
They say originality is overrated. To some extent, there is truth to this statement. Unless you’re talking about proprietary information, almost everything and anything has been written about. Your task – albeit not an easy one – is to write a headline that presents something as if you’re offering something new. You may be rehashing an already existing story, but through your headline, you can create the perception and impression that what you’re going to talk about is being told for the first time.
Don’t Be A Snooze
Lastly, great headlines are not lullabies. To say this more bluntly, boring headlines won’t cut it, especially because internet surfers have tons of content options at their fingertips–hilarious videos, great stories and captivating images. Engaging headlines should have a dash of entertainment value which does not equate with gimmicky and nonsense copywriting techniques. Amuse readers without being a clone. A little bit of humor and great storytelling will definitely elevate your headlines to more engaging and attention-grabbing.
Unless you would rather market to goldfishes that to prospective customers, headlines that hook are essential to your business’ success online. Keep these tips in mind and give your site a headline makeover.