If you've ever found yourself needing to write a headline it can be a daunting affair. There's a blank page staring back at you challenging you to fill it. It can be a really frustrating experience as you wait for inspiration to strike so, to oil the wheels of creativity, I’m going to give you five approaches that create interest and intrigue – enough for your prospect to be magnetised by your message and motivated to act.
How to X Without Y (or How to Yay! Without Boo!)
This is a brilliantly simple method to describe a better future for your prospect and handling their biggest objection to getting there. So, “Yay” is the future and “Boo!” is the objection. Another way of looking at this is to say how to achieve result X without negative repercussion Y. Here are a few examples.
- How to be a great salesperson, even if you're painfully shy.
- How to be successful at X, even if you've failed in the past.
- How to sell high ticket consultancy services, even if no one has ever heard of you.
- How to get more clients to your business without spending more money.
- How to get as fit a professional athlete, even if you don’t have time.
- New eBook reveals how to create internet campaigns that sell without costing you a penny.
- How to sell your house quickly without having to drop the price.
- How to make your dog super obedient, even if they’re not a puppy.
What to Do If…
This headline allows you to focus in on the objections and negatives a prospect may be experiencing. It really homes in on pointing out the pain of someone’s situation whilst underlining a solution using the phrase “what to do”.
- What to do if you’ve got an amazing product but can’t find buyers.
- What to do if you’ve tried everything and still can’t lose weight.
- What to do if there’s an enormous vault of knowledge in your head but you can’t get it to the market.
- What to do if you can’t get through to your teenage kids.
The Truth About
The word “truth” is powerful and is one of those words which we seem wired to pay attention to. The reasoning goes something like this: Our brains are predisposed to believe in conspiracy theories or more specifically the belief that there is something going on we should know about but don’t. Using “truth” suggests that some preconception we may have about something is wrong and, therefore, we’re on the outside of an important circle of knowledge.
Whilst this is a deeply powerful approach you must have something which delivers on the promise. You would feel duped if you clicked on “The Truth About Elvis’s Death” only to find its pretty much his Wikipedia entry.
Another take on this headline would be to use “The Myth About”.
You Need X, Right? Wrong!
This one is a variation on the headline above and challenges preconceptions but in a very direct and clear way. Here are a few examples:
- You need millions of followers on Facebook to succeed on the Internet, Right? Wrong!
- You need to eat a low-fat diet to lose weight, Right? Wrong!
- You need a business degree to run a company, Right? Wrong!
The Pain Question
Another headline approach is to focus in on the pain your prospect is trying to escape from.
- Are you tired of doctors who can't find out what's wrong with you?
- If you have trouble sleeping read this and discover how to fall asleep naturally... without pills or medicine.
- Are you tired of internet gurus who can't actually help you succeed online?
- If you have trouble making sales online, please read this…
- Are you tired of Facebook strategies that work for a day and then die?
The answer to the question is always “yes” which indicates two things; first, it acknowledges their pain and second, it subliminally proposes that you have a solution to it.
So, there are five headline approaches you can use to pep up your advertising and marketing. You can also use them as titles for almost any marketing asset you create, like eBooks, articles and blog posts, social media and more. These are versatile approaches you can deploy throughout your marketing to great effect.