With a scant 1-3 seconds to catch a prospect’s attention, your goal is to do so long enough for your prospect to decide to continue reading all of your content. As advertising guru David Ogilvy said,”On the average, 5 times as many people read the headlines as read the body copy.”
So how do you create a killer headline? One way is to focus on the single strongest benefit you can offer your prospects (aka the USP – unique selling proposition), but here are a dozen other pointers to consider:
1. Ask a question in the headline. “With 1 in 2 people getting osteoarthritis in their lifetime, can you afford to ignore your joints?”
2. Give news using words such as “introducing,” “announcing” or “new.” “Announcing 10 remarkable ways to stay in shape without exercising daily.”
3. Address your prospects’ concerns. I call it pushing their buttons so when they read, they think “yeah, I need/want this. I gotta have it.”
4. Promise something wonderful, but do not lie. You’ll lose more customers than you gain that way (bad news travels fast). “For deep-clean, oil-free skin, Noxzema has the solution.”
5. Be specific. This well-known Rolls Royce headline did the job: “At 60 miles an hour, the loudest noise in this new Rolls Royce comes from the electric clock.”
6. Give the reader a command – tell him/her to do something. “Go ahead, throw away this free offer.”
7. Promise your prospects helpful/useful information. “How to avoid foreclosure,” or “4 tips for losing weight without feeling starved for your favorite foods.”
8. Promise to reveal a secret. “Discover the secret to writing thought-provoking, compelling copy,” or “Explore the secret to effective nutritional supplements.”
9. Give your prospects good news. “You’re never too old to be in great shape.”
10. Target a particular type of reader. “Do you aspire to write children’s books?
11. Tie in to current events. The most well-known example of this is the “Official car (camera, airline, beverage etc.) of the Olympics.”
12. Highlight your guarantee. “Lose 10 pounds in 10 days or your money back.”
So, are your prospects reading your headlines? What’s the best one you’ve used to catch their attention successfully? Please let me know because when I’ve gathered enough “winners,” I’ll share them here.
This is an excerpt from Chapter 18 of my book, Millionaire Marketing on a Shoestring Budget™.