Delicious Headlines: Basic Rules for Catchy Titles

Do you want to be a successful writer, who can create not just brilliant articles, but stunning headlines? Then hang the quote of outstanding copywriter and marketer David Ogilvy: “80% of success lies in unique title» on the wall.

catchy titles

You know that if the title is catchy, the reader will decide to dive into the text. Sometimes it is much harder to write catchy titles than the whole articles. After all, in the article, we are not so limited to the required number of words and symbols and can depict everything in bright colors, in an interesting and exciting way. But to determine how much the reader wants to read this article, he will first focus on the title.

How to write a good headline?

So let us take a closer look at what rules help the author to create catchy article titles:

  1. Plan. Come up with the title after writing the article. Note the strongest key points in the text, and try to reflect the essence of the article in the title. Do not try to come up with an interesting and catchy title, but not related to the content. The deception will be revealed after a couple of paragraphs.
  2. Brevity. Brevity is not only the sister of talent, but it is also a way to concentrate. Therefore, make titles as brief as possible, but informative – approximately no more than 8 words.
  3. Numbers. Readers love statistics and specifics. The number is a measure that allows a person to assess how much benefit he will take from reading a particular text, and how easy it will be for him to perceive the proposed information. The larger the number, the richer the material. It the result it attracts a wide audience. And the less number, the easier and more practical it will be. By providing such certainty, the writer can manipulate the audience, for example, mixing useful information with the commercial layer.
  4. Questions. People love when someone is interested in their opinion, asking them about something. Therefore, the question in the title is perceived by readers as an invitation to dialogue addressed to them personally. Subconsciously, they begin to try to answer it and are drawn into reading the article.  The question in the title makes the person answer it. Questions can be rhetorical, can be concrete, can be abstract. 
  5. Solution. Promise the person to solve his problems and he will read it with pleasure. The best word to start with is “How.” The trick is simple: choose the problem, give in the text its solution, and in the title give the reader to understand that the text is the solution. 
  6. Promise. A promise to share an experience, your own or some famous person, is usually very catchy and credible. People always have more confidence in those who have already done something, rather than those who just talk about how to do something. Also, the title may include not only the personal experience of the author but also of the third party. 
  7. Intrigue. Add intrigue to the title to make it catchy. Promise to reveal some secret, or reveal a carefully hidden secret that will help readers, or just satisfy their curiosity. People just love secrets and mysteries, especially if these secrets will allow them to get certain advantages. 
  8. Simplicity. One method of creating catchy titles is to focus on simplicity and lightness. Emphasizing that the posted materials help to quickly and fully understand the problem, you will achieve a strengthening of the emotional message and interest of the reader. 
  9. Negative side. Sometimes, to create good titles, readers need to scare or add a little negative. Instinctively trying to protect themselves from this, people are sure to read the article.
  10. Catchy words. To write spectacular article titles, you need to use the most catchy words that affect human psychology. It will be a great solution to use these words: stunning, unique, legendary, best.

We have reviewed 10 methods of creating spectacular titles, and we hope that they will be useful to you. But simply following the rules is not enough. You need to include your imagination, and based on templates to come up with something original. Creative title to the text, which stands out from the crowd, will attract attention.

The best formulas to create catchy titles

Formulas help beginners to apply fundamental marketing principles, professionals – quickly walk through the control points of the title:

  • The AIDA formula

Attention – miracles happen
Interest – what tea
Desire – to lose weight in 10 days on 5 kg
Action – find out
The result: Miracles happen! Find out what tea will help you lose weight in 10 days on 5 kg

  • Formula 4U

Urgency – only until April 
Usefulness – up to 50% discount
Uniqueness – unique Japanese cream
Ultra-specificity – anti-aging facial massage
The result: Only until April up to 50% discount on anti-aging facial massage with a unique Japanese cream

  • 4 principles of Bob Bly

Attracting attention — harm to health
Appeal to the target audience — cream yogurts
Exact sentence — the results of the test
Involvement in reading the text — why
The result: Why cream yogurts are harmful to health? The results of the test

  • Title-comparison formula: X vs Y

X — Lexus IS
Comparison — or (better, faster)
Y — Mercedes CLA
The result: Lexus IS or Mercedes CLA: an honest test drive

  • Numeric headline formula

Number — 17
Adjective — the most beautiful
Bugs/tips/ideas/examples — places
To achieve/avoid — honeymoon
Desired result/disaster — a budget
The result: 17 the most beautiful places for a budget honeymoon

article titles

Keep your options open! Use different formulas, that will help to create a unique title and provide with headline ideas!

Final word

Let us summarize all the information. When writing a title, it is necessary to highlight the real needs of the target audience and include them in the title. Also, it is important to determine the purpose of the title: problem-solving, benefit, motivation for action, curiosity, emotions. When using numbers in the headline, remember that odd numbers work better. Negative tonality increases clickability. Make headlines simple and clear, understandable at a glance. To quickly write a title, refer to the proven formulas and templates.

Leave a Reply