Help Me Write Killer Titles

34 replies
Hi, I am looking for free web resources on writing killer titles as I have identified this as an area I could tighten up on. I am looking for article writing as opposed to sales letters. I would really appreciate your recommendations. Many thanks.
#killer #titles #write
  • Profile picture of the author AwesomePossum
    titles are really crucial so I'll give you an overall technique.

    Cut out the fluff....all of it. Be as direct and simple as you can....then you'll start to see your repeating yourself and attaching meaningless words that entirely undermine the concept of a title

    After that start using words that connect directly to your customer rather than you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
    Originally Posted by SharonaB View Post

    Hi, I am looking for free web resources on writing killer titles as I have identified this as an area I could tighten up on. I am looking for article writing as opposed to sales letters. I would really appreciate your recommendations. Many thanks.
    Hi SharonaB,

    Here's a good article on the topic ...

    Article Marketing & Copywriting Secret - How To Make Your Article TITLE Sell

    It was written by Christopher Knight, an expert on the subject.

    Alex
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
    Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

    Go to the National Enquirer website and learn from the best. The Sun is good, too. The magazine rack at your local supermarket ain't bad, either.
    Ken, respectfully, that's not a good idea. Article titles need to be constructed differently than those type of headlines.

    Alex
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    • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
      Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

      Respectfully, no, they don't.
      Ken,

      The purpose of articles is to rank high in the search engines and generate clicks for the writer. Therefore, the first 3 to 5 words of an article title should contain the search phrases people interested in the topic are likely to key in when they use Google search.

      That's much different than headline writing for the National Enquirer, the Sun, etc.

      Alex
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      • Profile picture of the author The Copy Nazi
        Banned
        Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

        Ken,

        The purpose of articles is to rank high in the search engines and generate clicks for the writer. Therefore, the first 3 to 5 words of an article title should contain the search phrases people interested in the topic are likely to key in when they use Google search.

        That's much different than headline writing for the National Enquirer, the Sun, etc.

        Alex
        Alex is right. But if you can combine the two techniques you've got it made.
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      • Profile picture of the author Obelisk
        Originally Posted by Alex Cohen View Post

        Ken,

        The purpose of articles is to rank high in the search engines and generate clicks for the writer. Therefore, the first 3 to 5 words of an article title should contain the search phrases people interested in the topic are likely to key in when they use Google search.

        That's much different than headline writing for the National Enquirer, the Sun, etc.

        Alex

        Alex,

        Thinking 'inside the box' you might be correct, HOWEVER...pulling ideas from those rags have put a decent amount of bank in my pocket...just one man talkin though'....

        For Example:

        Fictitious Rag Headline Reads:

        "Two Headed Bat-Child from New Hampshire Rakes in Millions from Article Marketing Techniques He Got Off a Nameless Hobo Living on the Dark Side of Town'

        can easily transfer into....

        IM'er 'Massaged' Headline Might Read:

        "Former Illiterate 'Two-Fingered' Typist (with a G.E.D) from New Hampshire REVEALS the True Secrets of Article Marketing Riches He was Literally Spoon-fed from a Skid-Row 'Good-for-Nothing' while Sipping Coffee in a Manchester Soup Kitchen..."

        (Now this is a quick knee-jerk response but I think you get the point....)

        Chris
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        .

        BTW Where was I from and who did I learn Article Marketing from? (Hint: If you can remember from the above it was effective...
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      • Profile picture of the author Penworthington
        Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

        No, it isn't. It's simply staying on topic.

        If magic formulas worked, we'd all rank 1 on Google.

        The purpose of articles is to be read.

        Of course your title should relate to the content.

        Damn.
        Of course the purpose of articles is to be read, but if they don't grab attention through the headline, they won't be.

        Relevance to the topic is of course crucial, but it is true that the keyphrase should be within the first few words of the title.

        This will help with being picked up more successfully by the search engines too.
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  • Profile picture of the author NetWorth
    It is all about writing editorial type titles. Sound like the Sunday News and not a sales person. I read a great book on writing copy I'll look it up and get back.
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  • Profile picture of the author malarky
    Hello first post-- just thought I'd share a bit of my experience with titles. While you want to grab the search engines as much as the reader I think a great rule of thumb is to try and have your vital keywords in the headline (obviously). But for your actual readers, it's a rule of thumb in news writing to make sure that each part of your headline (the headline and the subheading -- if you have one) is its own independent syntactical unit. It does wonders for comprehension and flow.

    Just my .02
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  • Profile picture of the author Irishcopywriter
    There are a lot of ways to write titles. If you want the titles to be of the "eyeball" grabbing type, you will have to work at it. I usually write 100 or more titles, before settling on a specific one and even then I do split tests to see which title outpulls the other. I have had a sales letter outpull another with a different title by as much as 1500%! There really isn't a shortcut, but a book called "Words that Sell" by Richard Bayan has more than 6000 entries for a starter. Sensational headlines like the ones at National Enquirer, et.al, are just that... Check out Amazon for titles, as well. When all else fails, acquire a "swipe file" of ads written by the best copywriters past and present, John Carlton, Michael Masterson, Gary Bencivenga, Gary Halbert, Clayton Makepeace, David Deutch, etc.
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  • Profile picture of the author Penworthington
    I wrote a blog post on this subject. Rather than just copying it all out here for you, here's the address:

    themightierpen.wordpress.com/2009/07/09/3-words-not-to-include-in-your-article-titles/

    I hope you find it interesting, and useful.
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  • Profile picture of the author dyadvisor
    I am a Platinum ezinearticles writer of over 300 not PLR articles. I get attention with multiple top (up to 20, #1 to #3) Google rankings per article, and bring in the visitors, unlike other writers who depend on readers already on the site.

    My secret, a combination of two 3 keyword phrases and power words for about a 75 word headline, and then the first 200-250 main characters in subject. An example:

    Killer Article Headlines: Power Headline Phrases Kill Competition Headings
    (letter count = 74, each word unique, "killer article headlines" & "power headline phrases" = keywords, no single word used in same format more than once-uses variations)

    Killer articles headlines is the power method in killing competition. The powerful headliners are down right phrases that killers use to eliminate competitors. Kill or be killed, article headings are over powering.
    (letter count = 215, each word used once with combination. Has SEO and tabloid mastered)
    Rules: 1.25 uses per 100 words, not counting heading. Kill, killer, killers, killing, killed ALL unique. In 400 word article all could be used a maximum of 5 times.

    Hope this helps. Will be writing an ebook on this technique, along with 250 interchangeable, 15-20 word motivating - yet meaningless-go anywhere-interchangeable sentences to insert in article. Then after, or before spinning, add 5-6 of these sentence motivators to make your article 20% longer and 20% more unique.... like this idea?
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    • Profile picture of the author enwereuzo
      Originally Posted by dyadvisor View Post

      I am a Platinum ezinearticles writer of over 300 not PLR articles. I get attention with multiple top (up to 20, #1 to #3) Google rankings per article, and bring in the visitors, unlike other writers who depend on readers already on the site.

      My secret, a combination of two 3 keyword phrases and power words for about a 75 word headline, and then the first 200-250 main characters in subject. An example:

      Killer Article Headlines: Power Headline Phrases Kill Competition Headings
      (letter count = 74, each word unique, "killer article headlines" & "power headline phrases" = keywords, no single word used in same format more than once-uses variations)

      Killer articles headlines is the power method in killing competition. The powerful headliners are down right phrases that killers use to eliminate competitors. Kill or be killed, article headings are over powering.
      (letter count = 215, each word used once with combination. Has SEO and tabloid mastered)
      Rules: 1.25 uses per 100 words, not counting heading. Kill, killer, killers, killing, killed ALL unique. In 400 word article all could be used a maximum of 5 times.

      Hope this helps. Will be writing an ebook on this technique, along with 250 interchangeable, 15-20 word motivating - yet meaningless-go anywhere-interchangeable sentences to insert in article. Then after, or before spinning, add 5-6 of these sentence motivators to make your article 20% longer and 20% more unique.... like this idea?
      Thank you for this post.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rezbi
    Originally Posted by SharonaB View Post

    Hi, I am looking for free web resources on writing killer titles as I have identified this as an area I could tighten up on. I am looking for article writing as opposed to sales letters. I would really appreciate your recommendations. Many thanks.
    I wrote an article a couple of day ago which might help. Check it out:

    Do You Make These Mistakes In English? | The Marketing Sleuth

    There's a few others on there. Just do a search with 'headlines'.
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  • Profile picture of the author gabriel moisescu
    Originally Posted by SharonaB View Post

    Hi, I am looking for free web resources on writing killer titles as I have identified this as an area I could tighten up on. I am looking for article writing as opposed to sales letters. I would really appreciate your recommendations. Many thanks.
    hi, try Advanced Marketing Institute - Headline Analyzer
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    Video Marketing Services
    http://gabrielmoisescu.com/

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    • Profile picture of the author Rezbi
      Originally Posted by gabriel moisescu View Post

      I just gave that a go and, like most things like this, it could be good to get the creative juices flowing.

      Having said that, check out this analysis:

      "Do you make these mistakes in english"
      Your Headline's EMV Score:
      42.86%

      This score indicates that your headline has a total of 42.86% Emotional Marketing Value (EMV) Words. To put that in perspective, the English language contains approximately 20% EMV words.
      And for comparison, most professional copywriters' headlines will have 30%-40% EMV Words in their headlines, while the most gifted copywriters will have 50%-75% EMV words in headlines.
      A perfect score would be 100%, but that is rare unless your headline is less than five words.
      While the overall EMV score for your headline is 42.86%, your headline also has the following predominant emotion classification:

      Spiritual
      Your headline carries words that have a predominantly Spiritual appeal. Words that resonate with Spiritual impact are the smallest number of words in the language. AMI research has found that Spiritual impact words carry the strongest potential for influence and often appeal to people at a very deep emotional level.
      Words with Spiritual impact are best used with people and businesses desiring to make an appeal to some aspect of spirituality. This does not mean religion specifically, but any product or service that resonates with "spirituality" oriented markets are appropriate. The clergy, new age, health food and related markets all respond favorably to sales copy heavy with Spiritual impact content. Women and children also respond strongly to words in the Spiritual sphere. Marketing documents with strong Spiritual impact content can make for the most powerful presentations in the marketplac,e but must be used with considerable skill.
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  • Profile picture of the author dyadvisor
    Gabriel: I looked at your suggestion. It sounds like it was made by a 3rd grade teacher. This is a WARRIOR forum, to get ahead, a warrior leads. The subject is effective marketing, not pleasing mom. Automatic machines often fail to match human minds. Creativity with the great ideas is what makes this forum great. Sorry, but I prefer to think for myself, look for a better idea, and then pounce on it.
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  • Profile picture of the author dyadvisor
    May the spirits be with you. Google and SEO techniques do not believe in spirits. Myself I feel spirited headlines work. Shock therapy, not meditation. I do not want to put the reader to sleep.

    Nothing wrong with counting sheep, but I would rather count hits. Each to their own.

    Reach your goals at age 100 or before age 50, the choice is yours.
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  • Profile picture of the author Penworthington
    I've just tried the headline analyzer. I entered the title of my most popular article which has regularly been receiving hundreds of hits every single month for the past year. Apparently the title only scores 11%. I think that says a good deal about automated analyzers - about as much use as article spinners.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rezbi
    Originally Posted by SharonaB View Post

    Hi, I am looking for free web resources on writing killer titles as I have identified this as an area I could tighten up on. I am looking for article writing as opposed to sales letters. I would really appreciate your recommendations. Many thanks.
    Sharona,

    Go to my site (in the sig) and type in 'Ted Nicholas' in the search box: You'll get a complete course on writing headlines.
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  • Profile picture of the author dyadvisor
    WHO THE HECK THINKS THAT CHRIS KNIGHT, chief Money Maker at Ezine Articles is a great writer?

    Check his wordage describing his book. The sentence is 40 words long! He is good at having enough buyers. However talking the talk is different from taking the walk.
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  • Profile picture of the author barrogz
    i use digg for ideas and spin from that

    look for ones that have been "dugg" more then 50-100 times
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  • Profile picture of the author KevinTorrence
    Just for fun, I thought I'd try out the Emotional Marketing Value tool ... kinda fun:




    Try that again:




    :-)
    Signature
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  • Profile picture of the author dyadvisor
    Keith: I reviewed your analysis. Then I did some simple checking on Google. Using one article, no tricks, here would be the results on Google.

    Virtually Guaranteed #1
    Little Known secrets revealed with 50% rating

    Obtainable, little skill, #3 Google position
    Closely Guarded Secrets Revealed with 100% rating

    Conclusion: If you do not give the searchers what they want, you will not get what you want. Mind vs. Machine. I am glad I still have my mind. Enjoyed the posting.
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  • Profile picture of the author waywardsister
    We demonstrated this 'tool' to a client once...basically, why it sucks. Here's my headline:

    "Do you eat poo? If not, you may be missing out on one of nature's greatest healing tonics."

    I can't copy/paste the page bc I can't post links (there's a link in there somewhere, I guess?) but I got 55.56% and a definite Spiritual emotional classification. Oh yeah.
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  • Profile picture of the author Len Bailey
    Clayton Makepeace and Bob Bly once did a Webinar on writing killer headlines -- I'll have to see if I can find it. But I just posted one of Clayton's best articles in my Warrior blog... and here's the link to the original article on Clayton's website.

    Hope this helps...
    Signature

    Len Bailey
    Copywriter/Consultant
    Feel free to connect on LinkedIn or Twitter

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    • Profile picture of the author Rikki_Fawkes
      For me, titles including "Top Three Ways" or "Five Best Tips" typically work pretty well. Also, titles that ask questions can catch a reader's attention more than a straight sentence or phrase.

      Hope this helps
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  • Profile picture of the author fingers4hire
    Headlines that are straight and to the point are the attention getters. You only have a couple of seconds before the reader clicks away to something else.
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