“Hello, Reader. I’ve been expecting you. You fell into my little trap, and now I have you just where I want you.” That’s exactly what you should be thinking when you’re writing each and every one of your blog post titles.
More than likely, you’re reading this article because you were specifically interested in its content as I conveyed it to you through its title. Would you be as inclined to click the link if instead the title read Attracting potential readers to your blog, or something arcane like, Blog Lessons from Obvious Adams?
People have short attention spans. We skim first, and then read the details. That’s why it’s important to have descriptive blog post titles to hook peoples’ attention.
Here are two variations of some blog post titles that I’ve encountered in the past, along with my impressions of them.
- Foolproof Ways to Improve Your Writing
I might attempt to read this article as I’m always interested in improving my writing. But where’s the sense of urgency? You know as well as I that articles on improving writing are a dime a dozen.
- 100 Tips for Writers
Possibly a great resource, but I don’t have the energy to read one hundred tips right now. Will there be tips to tell me how to grocery shop for writing-appropriate snacks? If so, I’m probably not interested. But if there are tips on improving character dialog, then I’m definitely interested in reading more.
Now here are a two blog titles I’ve encountered that I consider top-notch.
- Five Tips to Make Your Synopsis Stronger by Casey Herringshaw
Five tips are short. That’s good. But more importantly, I just happen to be struggling with my own synopsis, so the finding of this article is timely. I’m clicking the link to read more.
- 5 frequently misused punctuation marks by Rob Reinalda
What exactly are the five frequently misused punctuation marks? Am I misusing them? I’m clicking the link to read more.
This same guidance applies to posting article links on Twitter via your tweets. Here’s a great example.
- Quotation Marks: When to use doubles (“) and when to use singles (‘) tweeted by Louise Gibney (@MissWriteUK)
What Louise did here was take a web page simply titled, Single or double quotation (speech) marks, and make it more relevant to a potential reader. Clearly she could have tweeted the web page title as-is, but instead chose to engage potential readers with a more descriptive title.
As you can see, there’s really no trick involved in writing descriptive blog post titles to attract potential readers. The answer is obvious, even to Adams.