If you pay attention to the gurus, you know that using attention-grabbing headlines and subject lines will get you more readers.
People will be coerced into opening your emails and will click to read your blog posts.
Because we all receive far too many emails in a day to read them all, we all face tough competition for readership.
Some of the bloggers here on Active Rain are masters at writing creative headlines that make the rest of us so curious that we have to look. I admire their imagination and creativity.
For those of us who aren’t so creative, there are other tactics. For instance, we can write “How to …” articles and lists of “X ways to…” Beginning a headline with “Why…” is also a curiosity grabber.
Those are what we might call the “White Hat” attention grabbers. They’re usually truthful. The information to follow actually does keep the promise made by the headline.
And then there are the others…
Faced with tough competition for readers, many are turning to subject line words that pack more punch.
Those are words like:
- Jaw dropping
They would be fine, but for one thing. Much of the time, they’re not true.
The articles that follow attention-grabbing headlines / subject lines using these words are often a tired rehash of old information. Or – in some cases, they have nothing at all to do with the headline.
In fact, that happens so often that most of the time I delete those messages without reading them. In other words, their effect on me is opposite from the intent. I expect that I’m not the only one with that reaction.
So be careful.
If you really do have something shocking, startling, or amazing to reveal, do shout it from your headline. Then pay attention to your open rates to judge whether or not to continue using these words.
You don't want your own readership to suffer as a result of other people writing misleading headlines - but it could.