There are over a billion people connected to the Internet and many fall into the category of “your ideal clients,” but it’s not likely they go online looking for you, your business or your blog. Using keywords in your blog posts will certainly help the search engines find you, but only by clicking on your headlines will your prospects get to know you—and contact you. Here are three proven headline tips for coaches and consultants.
#1: Compelling Headlines vs Clickbait
Compelling headlines grab a reader’s attention and compel them to click to the content in order to read more. Pretty straight forward. Clickbait is a bit more complex. Depending on who you ask (or how you’ve been lured into reading something that didn’t meet your own expectations), most people agree that clickbait is a headline that is dishonest about the content. (Facebook defines clickbait as a headline that encourages a reader to click on it, but doesn’t indicate what they will see.) We define clickbait as a headline that over-promises and under-delivers. Not good if your goal is to offer solutions your readers can rely on.
#2: 5 Classic Headline Samples for Coaches and Consultants
The last headline you clicked on was a classic list headline (this article). Why did you click on it? Was it just curiosity, or were you looking for tips to save you time and effort? Research has found that the most compelling headlines gratify our:
- Goals (save time, money or effort)
- Desires (lust, greed or comfort)
- Curiosity (controversy)
In addition to this blog post title, here are five samples of classic list headlines that fall into one of these categories:
- 10 Ways to Beat the High Cost of _____
- Free Book Tells You 12 Secrets of _______
- Do You Recognize the 7 Early Warning Signs of _______?
- Five Familiar ______ Troubles
- Six Types of _________ — Which Group Are You In?
#3: Test Your Headline
Assuming you are offering quality content—content written to solve a problem for your readers—your headline should reflect that. Test your headline with these questions:
- Does it have a news element?
- Is your headline specific?
- Does it provoke curiosity?
- Is your headline unique?
- Does it touch a nerve?
- Is your headline credible?
- Does it offer a compelling benefit for reading?
Remember: the purpose of a headline is to get people to start reading, so that they can get to know you. Your headline is a reflection of you, and the solutions you offer.
What’s your visitor (or click-through) rate? How much time do people spend on each post? We’d love to hear from you; send us an email. If your numbers aren’t where you like, give these tips a try.