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How To Write Catchy Headlines And Blog Titles [5 Easy Steps]

In this post, we’re going to illustrate exactly how to write catchy headlines and blog titles.

Using a simple 5 step formula, you’ll be able to craft unique headlines that make your articles stand apart from the competition.

If you’re ready to drastically increase the click-through rate of your content, then this post is for you!

Let’s get started..

Why Your Headline Matters

Before we get into some catchy headlines examples let’s talk about why your headline matters.

The decision whether or not to read an article is based entirely on the headline, and that decision happens in a fraction of a second.

It doesn’t matter how good (or relevant) your content is if your headline doesn’t grab the attention of a potential reader.

SEO might get your post to the top of the search results, but it takes a great headline to close the deal.

A great headline is clear, concise, and compels action. 

It’s your sales pitch.

Although this post doesn’t include a list of catchy titles for articles you can simply copy & paste, it does contain a 5-Step Formula you’ll be able to use as a ‘blog title generator‘ for every piece of content you create.

What is an example of a catchy headline?

A catchy headline is short (about 60 characters), easy to read (or skim), and includes your topic/keyword. It will also contain a combination of emotional and power words, and often includes a number (list posts).

How do you write a catchy blog title?

Take the above elements, and format them using one of the common blog title templates, such as:

  • a question
  • how-to guide
  • case study
  • controversial statement
  • list post
  • … and so on.

But this is only part of the story. To really stand out, your headline needs to be unique

How do you get a unique title?

If your headline is on a billboard or business card, the template above would be sufficient. 

But for most of us, our headlines and blog titles are competing in the vast sea of social media posts and search engine results. 

Each piece of content we create will need to be altered based on the competing pieces of content that surround it. 

And you can do this by walking through 5 Easy Steps.

How To Write Catchy Headlines And Blog Titles in 5 Easy Steps

This 5-Step Formula will have you generating unique blog title ideas, quickly and easily.

How To Write Catchy Headlines And Blog Titles Infographic

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Step 1. Define Your Topic

This step is where you decide on the general topic for your blog post. You’ll start with a broad concept, and then use your keyword research tool to narrow it down to a more specific topic, centered around your primary keyword. 

There are lots of great keyword research tools available, but this process is the same no matter which one you’re using.

Keep narrowing your focus until you decide on a primary keyword that has the right balance of monthly searches and competition in line with how established your blog is.

Now, we’ll use Step 2 to get a more complete picture of the topic for your article.

Step 2. Complete The Picture

You’ll get a more complete picture of how to position your blog posts using LSI keywords

While not exactly keywords on their own, these keywords will tell you what people are really looking for when they use your primary keyword in a search query.

These are the related questions and search terms that let you know if the desired content is:

  • Informational: They want a definition or more info about a topic
  • Navigational: They want to find a specific site, person, song, etc.
  • Transactional: They want to solve a problem (i.e. product or guide)

Now that you have the complete picture of your topic and understand the search intent of your keyword, you can start generating some blog title examples that will stand out.

Step 3. Make It Unique

When we’re talking about making your headline unique, we don’t mean different from everything else that exists. 

A catchy headline is unique from the other headlines and blog titles that are surrounding it. You just need to stand out from that small handful of other headlines.

If all of the results for your keyword have a number in the title, for instance “10 ways to… or 6 simple steps…” having a number in your headline won’t be catchy. 

In that example you might use something like “The most important…” or if a number is necessary, moving it to the end of your title. 

You’re really only competing with 9 other headlines.

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Step 4. Craft Your Headline

Now that you have the basic angle and framework for your blog title, you can begin creating lots of variations to contrast & compare.

Don’t skim over this step. 

Great headlines are rarely written on the first try.

Click to Post

Remember to include the elements of a catchy headline from the beginning of this post. Keep it short, skimmable, and specific. Make sure there is a good cadence and flow. 

A catchy headline is meant to grab the reader’s attention and compel them to click through to your article. 

Write it for humans, not a search algorithm. 

Step 5. Keep Your Promise

Step 5 is the most important step in this process.. You need to keep your promise.

If your headline says your article is the best resource, make sure it really is the best.

Don’t use clickbait.

A catchy headline will grab their attention, but your article has to work hard to keep it. Your blog post must deliver on what it promises, and it’s a good practice to over-deliver.

Build your brand identity around authenticity and integrity.

Remember, a catchy headline is not about tricking someone into clicking your link, it’s about positioning your content for success.

And in a way, Step 5 is really just the first step of creating great content.

Final Thoughts

In summary, most people will never see your headline. Which means most people will never read your article. 

When you write catchy headlines and blog titles, you give your content a fighting chance to be seen. Just make sure you’re backing up a great headline with a great piece of content.

What about you?

What kind of headlines typically draw your attention? 

Let me know by leaving a comment below.

  • Hi Patrick, headlines that tell me what the blog post is about are usually with “5 tips” or “how-to” tend to get me to open the blog post and read. If they make strange promises, most likely I won’t open it. I like headlines that say what they mean 🙂

    • Agreed, Lisa. I typically read posts to learn something, so I prefer a clear title that tells me what I’m getting. If it seems like they’re over promising, I’ll pass.

  • A headline will grab my attention if:

    1) It is offering exactly what I’m looking for
    2) It is specific, not nebulous
    3) It isn’t clickbait or overly hyped

  • I’m usually searching for “how-to” posts, but I like it when they are structured along the lines of – How [doing this] gives you [this benefit]. Those usually catch my attention better than a generic – How To [do this] in [number of] steps.

    • That’s a good template, Delia! Showing the benefit of the ‘How-To’ can be a powerful technique.

  • I agree with this very much “When you write catchy headlines and blog titles, you give your content a fighting chance to be seen.” Helpful blog post!

  • Konstantin says:

    I’m drawn to list posts that aren’t a nice round number like 10. It seems that writers shoehorn the content to be a top 10 post. When I see another random number, it seems more legit.

  • I’m less particular about the headline style, more that the post lines up with what I’m searching for. But I HATE it when the content doesn’t deliver. Being honest with what the reader will get is more important to me than a catchy headline.

    • Great observation, Brett! I think it’s better to turn away potential readers that aren’t an exact match for your content. Tricking people into clicking on your link is not a good strategy.

  • Your point of view is very interesting. I like the way your headline formula builds step by step. Thanks!

  • You hit the nail on the head with Step #2. This is probably the biggest mistake people make with their headlines; Search Intent.

  • How exactly are you using lsi keywords, Patrick?

    • Great question, Tara!

      First, I use them to make sure the keyword fits the context of my article (i.e. search intent).
      Second, so I can answer a few of the ‘people also ask’ questions to try for a featured snippet.

  • Do you think it’s more important that the headline fit the search results entirely, or to have a better sounding title that may be longer?

    • My preference is that it fits entirely, Eugene. I usually don’t click on a headline that isn’t fully visible, except sometimes out of curiosity..

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