What Is Behind a Great Headline

The headline is what drives people to want to read your copy.  It is the hook that pulls the reader in. It grabs the attention of your visitors and forces them to read further. The headline should also express relevance to the copy itself. If your visitor clicked on an ad from a website, AdWords, or banner ad, they expect the headline to introduce what they clicked on. If it doesn’t, they will go elsewhere. Headlines also help to overcome objections.

When writing good headlines, keep in mind that you are getting your visitor to read your copy. The best way to do this is to avoid using words or phrases that may cause the visitor to react negatively to it. Basically, if the claims you make in the headline are too big or outrageous, it  makes the headline not believable enough. The best way around this problem is by avoiding such phrases as “get rich quick,” “lose weight fast,” and “make money instantly.” These are phrases that have been used by scammers for many years.

Instead of using phrases that can trigger a bid response, use a headline that can trigger a good response. Many copywriters call this a “conditional” headline. You start out the headline with an easy requirement, then finish it with a strong promise. If you are a programmer, you may be familiar with the IF… THEN statement. If this happens, then something this happens. If you are not a programmer, however, you are a copywriter, you may have seen this format in headlines.

An example is like this: “If you’ve got 5 minutes to spare, then I’ll show you how to lose weight quickly, using only natural means.”

By using the IF…THEN format in your headline, it makes it more believable.

Now, you may be wondering what is behind creating a great headline, besides what was talked about above. There are three methods you can use that will help you learn to write great headlines. These methods are practice, read, and swipe file. I’ll look at each one below:

1. Practice

The old adage is that practice makes perfect. The more you practice writing headlines, the better you will get at it. Before you know it, you will be churning out great headlines every time you try.

2. Read

Let me stretch this a bit and say it involves reading anything that contains a headline. The more headlines you read, you lean how to recognize the good ones and their structure. This will help you develop great headlines you can use for your copy or your client’s copy.

3. Swipe File

What does a swipe file have to do with great headlines? If you keep a swipe file, you can always go back to those headlines when you need inspiration to write one. You can use the idea and structure of such headlines, while constructing your own.

If you take to heart what is said in this blog post, you will be on your way to creating copy that will sell.