5 Bitchin’ Headline Rules to ensure some eyeballs

You can’t talk about social media, or any media for that matter, without talking about news.  Disseminating news and information is the primary function of the media.

In the previous post, we figured out how to write posts for Facebook, twitter, and social media in general. These rules more or less apply to all writing for the internet, but what changes when it comes to news is the headline.

The headline is the disclaimer – it is what decided whether or not the reader is going to click on your story or not. More importantly, the headline is a minefield of SEO potential. Keeping all of that in mind, here are a few rules to keep in mind while writing a headline:

  1. Make your headline as interesting  awesome as possible! Headlines that include awesome adjectives tend to attract a lot more interest / clicks / retweets / links than those that avoid them. Adjectives are big time influencers!
  2. Google everything – look before you leap into the headline. What do you want to rank well for? What does the competition look like? What’s the search volume looking like for the query you’re aiming to reflect? How can you stand out from the noisy crowd?
  3. Keywords are key.
    Optimize your headlines around key phrases, rather than individual keywords. Front load key phrases for maximum impact.
  4. Don’t cross the ‘one line’.Use maybe six to eight words in a headline, to try to keep it on a single line. Nothing is worse than overdoing it by one word, which appears as an ‘orphan’ on the second line. This is mainly for aesthetic reasons, but think about retweets too (you want to leave 30-40 characters of extra space for the tweeter to add a comment).
  5. Give your headline an SEO UpliftAfter saving a post as a draft, you can change the headline without changing the URL. So it’s possible to write a long keyword-rich headline to start off with, only to chop it down after you’ve saved or published the post.

Try these out, and tell me how they work out for you! I’m also going to be trying them more actively on my page. I’ll share the results.

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