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Use Sharp Headlines To Hook Readers – Or Else

I just sent an email to a very talented blogger who often buries some very good stuff. This is an expansion of that email I just sent.


Dear [Blogger]:

You write some great stuff.

I’d like to use more of it.

But many of your headlines are not descriptive. You need to grab readers immediately.

Contextual, specific,  intuitive information allows your site visitors to decide whether they should spend time to read it. Cute, obtuse, vague, long and rambling don’t work.

Readers are pressed for time and you need to let them know immediately that you have something that’s valuable enough for them to spend time with.

  • Focus on a single topic, 500 words maximum. Attention spans are short.
  • If you have more than one topic, make more than one post.
  • Write sharp, descriptive headline for each of them.
  • Use active voice.
  • Keep the headline short … 50 characters.

Otherwise, your good information gets passed over.

I’ve often re-written headlines so that they’ll attract News Fetch readers. But, I visit 200+ web sites every morning and my time — like that of News Fetch’s 19,400+ subscribers — is limited. I can’t do that very frequently.

In many ways, my attention span is much like the average web surfer’s:


First paragraph?

Set the hook isn’t set early and often.

And if your reader gets annoyed by flashing, twitching sliders, Flash, pop-ups and auto-run videos, they’ll click away to somewhere else.

And you might as well not have written it at all.

Food for thought.