A few weeks ago, I guest posted on LoriTaylor.com.
Thank you Lori, it was fun!
Many of you seemed to enjoy it…it was tweeted over 200 times!
Tweetreach showed 399,000 impressions from the first 50 Tweets
(I was too cheap to pay for the full report).
However, except for a handful of friends, the tweets didn’t mention my twitter handle. The tweets and re-tweets, as well as many of the comments seemed to be directed to Lori, as if she authored the post, even though I mention my wife several times in the article.
(I don’t believe Lori has a wife—LOL.)
Before I continue, let me clarify my point:
I’m not upset, ranting, or disappointed.
On the contrary, Lori is great for allowing me to “borrow” her blog.
This caused me to wonder, though. Considering the post’s reach had referrences to Lori, instead of the actual author…
Did people read the post or ONLY the headline?
I’m certain some of the tweets and Likes were automated, but not all of them were, and certainly the comments weren’t.
So…I ask again, “How important is the headline?”
IMHO, it is far and away the most important piece of writing in the post.
One of these days, I’m going to experiment with a great title like, “10 Ways to Convince Your Boss He Wants to Give You a Raise.” Then fill the body with Blah blah blah! Blah blah? Blah blah blah blah; blah blah blah.
(Did you notice the proper use of the semi-colon?)
Do you think I’d get a few tweets?
So what makes a great headline?
Here are a few headline ideas with examples:
- Ask a question. (I like open-ended questions)
- Solve a problem or offer a benefit.
- Jump into a debate or controversy. (What’s on your audience’s mind?)
- Use appropriate humor. (This isn’t as subjective as you’d think, btw.)
- Include keyword phrases. (Don’t be Captain Obvious with this one.)
I read a great post from Problogger on this exact topic and here’s what it said…
What You Can Do To Get Your Blog Read
If you believe your blog is receiving some attention, but not being read (lack of comments may be an indication), you must consider what can be improved to make it easier to read, before you do anything else.
- Be brief
- Format to make it pleasing to the eye, use bullet points etc.
- Talk like… you. Be yourself—it will come through
- Be funny, engaging and/or informative—hold your readers’ interest
I hope this has given you some ideas to consider.
Let me know what you would add, and watch for my next post—How Math Whiz Predicted Lottery Winner!
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