On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy.
David Ogilvy, father of advertising
Too often, those of us in public relations are asked to send a media release – usually on a subject that is not newsworthy.
We struggle to write the release, and we struggle to write the headline. A speaker I recently heard said, “If you don’t know the headline, and it’s not good, you probably don’t have a press release.”
That’s sound advice.
What makes a good headline? Here are four tips:
- Focus on the most provocative part of the story to pull in readers.
- Use numbers. The posts in which I use numbers in the headline typically have more readers.
- Be specific and concise.
- Use question words, such as why and how.
If you want to learn more, check out Poynter’s post on headline writing.