Years ago an article in The Atlantic called “Google Doesn’t Laugh” addressed the dying art of making witty titles in this age of SEO. As printed magazines and newspapers became digital, their titles became monotonous.
In order to captivate an audience, clever titles are necessary. Unfortunately, finding the balance between literally titling your piece for Google rankings and actually using an interesting headline is about as easy as juggling greased melons.
How to Write Badass Blog Titles
Lists Don’t Lie
When all else fails, make a list. Everyone loves lists—it’s not rocket science. Why? Well, firstly, we have small attention spans, we hate fluff, and just want that meaty good stuff. The easier to digest, the better.
Use a Balance of Word Types
Be sure to use a variety of word types in your titles. Mix common words, power words, emotional words, and uncommon words.
Emotional word examples: horrific, crazy, deadly.
Power word examples: amazing, surprising, wonderful.
Most of us have huge egos whether we like to admit it or not. So when we stumble across something online like “12 Reasons You Should Eat More Pizza,” we tend to want to know why we, personally should be eating more pizza.
Ask a Question
When we see an article title that poses a query, it’s natural for us to want to answer it. That might be why “Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?” was such a hit show. It made us really stop and wonder if we truly were more or less intelligent than a child.
The simple formula is “5 common something mistakes and how to avoid them.” People read that and they instantly want to know how to improve themselves. Instant clickbait, right?
Tie in Pop Culture with Personal Connections
We love knowing about celebrities. We love ourselves. What better way to create a catchy title than by mixing the best of both worlds?
Make Us Cry
English 101 told us that appealing to pathos, emotion, was one of the ways to be a successful writer. Titles are no exception.
Humor and weirdness will do a lot for you in this world if you do it right.
Even better than one of these tactics? Using them in conjunction with one another. Happy blogging!