Archive for July, 2008

It’s been said that the job of a headline is get propect  to read the next line. That is true, but even better is to get the prospect to read the next line with a feeling of anticipation. Here are some headlines that do exactly that.

1) Discover the _____ hidden in your_____

(Discovering something good that is hidden, especially when it is close by, is a powerful incentive to find out more)

(example) Discover the fortune hidden in your backyard

2) Do you have what it takes to____________

(When posed the right audience, this kind of challenge is intriguing and hooks them in to reading the text.)

(example) “Do You Have What It Takes To Be A Day Trader In The Hottest Financial Market In The World?”

3)(a person, expert, book, report, etc. ) reveals ________________

(The word reveals in the headline is a classic. It increases the engagement factor by implying  that a secret is about to be shared.)

(example) Free Report Reveals Little Known Secrets Overweight Women Use To Look 15 Pounds Slimmer Than They Really Are
 

4)  Are you tired/ fed up with_______?

(taps into genuine frustration and desire for a change)

(example) Are you fed up with waking up tired every morning because you didn’t sleep well?

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Looking for headlines and copy that can bring more leads and bring more sales to your business? Click this link

Want to learn how to write business-boosting headlines and copy?
Then click this link

© Altman Communications 2008

 

Here are some more proven headline constructions you can use to boost response rates. Notice that many of them have an editorial feel. Skepticism has soared as people get bombarded with sales messages in all directions. This is particularly true on the Internet, so most people browsing today have a finger on the trigger (the mouse) ready to click away in a nanosecond if they sense another hype-driven message.

They will read your copy, but they first need to be enticed or seduced into spending the time to read your message. They need to feel they’ll get something out of it.

One of the best ways to work around that skepticism and resistance is to provide a more editorial approach – a headline that clearly indicates there is valuable information in the text below (but make sure to pay it off with real value in the copy).
1) What [ different kinds of people ] need to know in order to accomplish something

(example) What everyone needs to know about getting their first job

(example) What entrepreneurs need to know about succeeding on the Internet

(example) What investors need to know about the gold market today
(“today” adds topicality and urgency to the information you are delivering)

2) [number] signs you’re [something negative]

(example) 8 signs you’re headed for financial disaster

(example) 4 signs you could be headed for a heart attack

3) Asking a provocative question with dire consequences

(example) When are you most likely to have a heart attack?

4) Little known or hidden ways _______
(another way to tap into the desire to know what others don’t know)

(example) Little known ways to win at negotiations

(example) Hidden ways to lower your pay per click costs

5) If you think [assumption]
(makes people examine their assumptions)

(example) If you think your computer is free from viruses, wait till you read this

6)Give me ____ and I’ll give you_____
(Quickly shows the reader that there is a quick way to achieve the benefit

(example)Give me 1 hour and I’ll set you up with a money-making website that runs on autopilot

7) If you have _____________ then [benefit]
(“If you have” lends a reasonable tone to big claims. Helps overcome skepticism and resistance because it asks something of the reader in order to achieve the benefit)

(example) If you have 30 minutes a month, I guarantee to make you feel 10 years younger

8) Test the reader
(classic engagement device)

(example) If you fail this test, you could have gum disease
(adding a visual element as I did in this ad makes this construction even more compelling. Visual showed a model’s teeth. Around the teeth were captions in the form of test questions witharrows pointing to gum disease symptoms in the teeth.)

(example) Test your market savvy with this quiz

To read the rest of this article, click copywriting headlines

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 Looking for headlines and copy that can bring more leads and bring more sales to your business? Click this link

Want to learn how to write business-boosting headlines and copy?
Then click this link

© Altman Communications 2008

Headlines are the single element that can do the most to improve response in all your marketing. According to David Ogilvy, founder of ad giant Ogilvy & Mather Advertising, unless your headline really works, “you have wasted 90% of your (ad) money.” Headline opportunities abound, including the top of direct mail sales letters, the front of brochures, ads, web sales pages, landing pages, opt-in pages, emails, and more.

Context is important in creating the right headline. Website sales pages, opt-in pages, direct mail, ads, are all somewhat different. Tone must be aligned with the target audience. Here is a group of headline structures that with a little work have proven to be exceptionally effective in many different marketing contexts.
1)I call them the “How’s”
This is one of the most effective and versatile headline structures. The How’s can be arranged in many different ways. For example:

[How I……..] tells a first person story. The testimonial slant of the approach adds to its power.

“How I was able to retire to a tropical island at aged 35 by creating one website”

“How a simple idea led to a promotion and a 50% salary increase…
and how you can do the same”

[How to…………]
How to turn the oil crisis into a personal windfall
Add a preceding address:
Stock market investors: How to make money in a bear market

Add a double benefit:
[How to ____ and _____ ]
How to increase traffic to your website and lift profits 155%

Add a triple benefit:
[How to ____ and____ while_____]
How to increase traffic to your website and lift profits 155% while working less

2) Something is missing approach:

The idea of missing out on something is a very powerful motivator. This naturally evokes curiosity – “what am I missing out on?” and even stronger emotions, such as anger, “Why haven’t I been told such and such.”

Here are two good examples. The first one uses the “Do you know what is missing” construction. It’s from a Nightingale Conant direct mailing talking about the controversial book and video “The Secret.”

You know of The Secret.
But do you know what it’s missing?

By the end of this letter, you will…

The next “missing” headline capitalizes on a 60 Minutes feature story on oil.

Missing 60 Minutes Oil Sands Story gives you a chance to make 575% over the next 12 months

You mean 60 Minutes didn’t tell me the whole story. And the missing part of the story can make me money? I’m all ears.

3) Mistakes Approach:
No one wants to make a mistake that can cost them dearly. That’s why the thought of avoiding costly mistakes is often a more potent motivator than taking advantage of an opportunity. Some examples:

This investment mistake could ruin your retirement

The biggest mistake average golfers make on their pitch shots

The 3 worst mistakes you can make on a job interview

4) Going against the big guys or the Common Enemy approach:
(you and I against the people/institutions that are trying to hide something from us.) In this age of increasing skepticism (often well-founded) of corporations and institutions, this can help get the reader on your side.

The investment secret superrich hedge fund managers pray small investors never find out and use for themselves

What pharmaceutical companies don’t want you to know about B-complex vitamins

 

These are just a few very powerful, proven headline structures that can boost response to your marketing. Stay tuned for more powerful headline structures.

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Looking for headlines and copy that can bring more leads and more sales to your business?
Click this link

Want to learn how to write business-boosting headlines and copy?
Then click this link