How To Write Killer Headlines…
Killer headlines. You will probably want to keep this next to your computer and
refer to it when you need to get the “creative juices” flowing.
Don’t get trapped in a box by thinking that this is just
intended for sales letters. This is a cheat sheet for all
headlines (blog post headlines, article headlines, etc…).
NOTE: You can also use this cheat sheet when you are looking for
subjects to write about.
Coordinate your writing with breaking news whenever you can.
Doing this will undoubtedly attract more attention.
Speak directly to the reader and call them out. Those who may or
may not be guilty of something are both going to be intrigued by
your view or the information you have concerning that type of
Put forth a proposition. For example, If you give me 7 minutes,
I will show you how you can lose up to 17 pounds.
Be shocking! This always comes with a risk, but every once in
awhile the benefits can be enormous. Just remember that the
usage of shocking material should tie into your core message in
Use sex to captivate your viewer. It might sound shocking, but
men want to know about women, women want to know about men, and
so on and so forth. So include sex whenever you can. Just make
sure it does not get too dirty.
Try to find common ground with your reader. It may be hard to
know exactly what your reader believes, however, you can
anticipate a reader’s opinion on a subject based on the article
they are choosing to read. For example, if you are writing about
100% natural remedies for acne you can point out the greedy or
unsafe tactics of the prescription medication companies.
Inspire curiosity. Everyone has the feeling that they just need
to KNOW once you have sparked their interest. In other words, if
you spark the interest of the reader in the headline then they
will proceed to read on until they find the answer they are
Outlandish cause and effect. For example “increase your income
by spending MORE.” These are perhaps some of the best and most
popular headlines in history so do not shy away from them.
Make a deal. If you are offering extremely valuable information
to the reader or if you feel as though you are providing
tremendous benefits for a very small investment then you need to
incorporate that into the headline.
Empower the reader. Promising the reader that they can pay back
the person or business that has wronged them. This is extremely
powerful in today’s society and will often lead to a lot of
Tell a story… Obviously, you cannot tell an entire story in a
headline. However, you can certainly begin a story in the
headline and capture the reader’s attention. Just think about
what goes through your mind when someone says “once upon a
time…” Obviously, a story is about to unfold, but you begin
thinking about what it could possibly be about. This is
precisely why this tactic is extremely valuable.
Ask a question
A Question is worth a thousand words. Ask a question that gets
the reader thinking and inquiring. For example, “Do you know how
you can make $500 in 50 minutes?” Questions like that will give
you complete command over the reader.
The new causes and effects. Create a sense of instantaneous
gratification that leaves the reader wanting to act accordingly.
A prime example of this is using the x and y strategy (if you do
x then you get y).
The If and when phenomenon. Predict what the reader might need
or want by saying if you like or feel ____ then you will really
enjoy _____. Or even leave it open ended by asking when you do
_____ do you feel ____?
Express genuine anger. These are perhaps some of the most viewed
articles because the headline leaves the reader curious,
empathetic, and introspective. For example, spending hours on an
email and never getting a response. Virtually everyone has
experienced this painful situation, and they want to know how
you dealt with it and what they should have done about it.
The power of the name drop. Throw out the name of a celebrity
and something that was not obviously associated with them. For
example, John Travolta says the best membership site on the
planet is ____.
Make an emotional connection. This can be anything that you feel
passionate about. Just remember to use authentic emotions. For
example, “Ignoring the bullies 101.”
Mystery in killer headlines
Solving the mystery. This is very valuable in a particular niche
because it gives you the freedom to introduce a
mystery/phenomenon or to give your opinion or answers about an
The real attention grabber. People often say “ a picture is
worth a thousand words,” but that is not really proven to be
true unless you use that picture at the beginning of a blog. By
doing that you can expect to get more than a thousand words in
feedback. You can even double the amount of feedback or interest
you get by using a photo of someone famous or by using a picture
that is mind boggling. You can bet that people will read
whatever you write just to figure out the backstory behind the
Urgency! Saying something such as “World ends at 7 p.m.”
probably will lead to some negative feedback because people will
take it quite literally. However, that sense of urgency created
by the headline will undoubtedly produce quite a lot of views
and feedback and may even go viral.
Everyone loves a scandal. This is a dangerous tactic especially
if you are making up a scandal about someone in your niche, but
it has proven successful in virtually all niches.
Validation works everytime. If you are in tune with the feelings
of those in your niche or your viewers, then you likely know
their fears. Don’t be afraid to agree with them and write an
article that speaks to those concerns. You will probably get
quite a bit of valuable feedback.
Debunking a myth. These are some of the most popular headlines
because they interest everyone and touch on things people have
heard for years. For example, “finally debunking the string
Predicting the future. Use a headline that speaks to something
that has not happened yet. This will leave people wondering if
you have evidence to support your claim and it will perhaps lead
to a lot of agreement. Even if you are wrong people will not be
Tossing out breaking news. People love to hear about anything
new and exciting so do not shy away from sharing some
Going into attack mode. This should be rather obvious, but it is
not a bad thing to attack something you do not like. Those who
feel the same way will defend you, and those who disagree will
express their opinion. Either way, it is a win-win.
Faster, cheaper, and easier. People love things that are easy,
quick, and inexpensive, which is why a headline that touches on
any of these three topics is always a killer headlines.
The power of a quote. Any quote will, for the most part, attract
attention. The more controversial, thought-provoking, and known
– the better.
To Your Success,