Why You Should Use Captivating Blog Titles & Why Bloggers Love Them

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Captivating Blog Titles

Are you a blogger or freelance writer craving to learn how to create exciting articles and surprising guest posts that create stir and debate?

I’ve been in the online marketing game for more than 10 years now, and I’ve seen dozens of different types of articles, such as; how-to tips, resource type articles, ultimate guides, top lists, interview style content, you name it.

You’ve seen them before, right? Did you also notice how most of them are quite boring?

Let’s face it! How often can we read the same “how to generate traffic to your blog” or “how to get blog comments” type of articles? They are predictable, just like a boring movie. There’s nothing exciting or new about the topic for the reader.

You can usually tell if an article lacks a fresh scent just by reading its title. If it doesn’t pull me in and grab my attention, I just skip it altogether. It’s like when you read a newspaper. We skim titles and headlines until one lures us in. You do it, everybody does it!

The first lesson you have to learn before writing captivating types of articles is to make your title unique. It has to stand on its own and get visitors curious about the content.

Think Of Your Title As Cheese For The Mice

captivating blog titles

Image by ‘AlicePopkorn’

This does NOT mean you have to fake your title. You’re not allowed to create titles for the sake of getting readers to read your content, or you’ll lose them forever.

A few months ago, I remember landing on a blog featuring eye-candy posts; 9 out of 10 posts were luring me in. The bad part though was that out of those 9, maybe one had substance, if ever. The blog owner knew how to write “killer” titles, but the content failed to deliver.  I am not reading his blog any more!

Captivating Blog Titles Should Always Under Promise and Over Deliver

Take this post for example – “Make More Money with The Affiliates Guide to Blog Commenting for Traffic and Leads”

I wrote it last month. It went viral: 77 comments, 51 tweets and 236 stumbles.  The promise I made to readers was simple and subtle – (you’ll learn how to) generate more money (traffic and leads) via blog commenting.  They’d expect some how to information and nothing else.

Later down the article, loyal readers stumbled upon a little treasure (this is where I over delivered on my initial promise). I included a list with 30 top industry blogs to comment on.

I spent a few days building the list, which featured 10 blog links, in 3 separate categories:

  • Health & Nutrition
  • Marketing & Blogging
  • Productivity & Self-Help

I made sure all links were valid at the time of writing the article. Readers found this part of the article the most valuable, as I’ve helped them skip days (if not weeks) of struggling to find these blogs on their own.

Someone with experience and the right eye can create such a list within days. For a beginner, it may take weeks.

Include A Free Treasure

captivating blog titles

Image by ‘Falashad’

You cannot imagine how appreciated are links that will save your readers (a ton of) time, money and frustration.

And speaking of treasures, here is a list with 24 of the most captivating blog titles that I’ve read recently and which I hope you’ll find useful and practical for your content writing and blogging activities.

You can tell these articles aren’t your average post, yet they have something in common:

  1. They stir your curiosity and urge you to click. True eye-candy!
  2. They connect unrelated topics, individuals or activities. Captivating!
  3. You can read them 5 years later and probably still find them relevant. Ever-green!

Before writing your first controversial article, ensure it packs the ingredients above.

Add Information That Comes From Personal Experiences About A Topic, Skill Or Activity

Let me give you a quick example.

What most people don’t know about me is that I’m a big NBA fan; so I thought how interesting it would be if I wrote an article on affiliate marketing and connect it with basketball.

That’s how I brought into existence: “A Big Lesson I Learned from LeBron James about Making Money Online (that Made Me a Top Affiliate Earner)”.  If you want to know the answer, then you’d have to read the article. Its title is quite irresistible, isn’t it?

The sad reality is that most content writers (even the veterans in the game) don’t know how to bring life to an article.  They lack the proper knowledge on making old topics exciting, they aren’t even dreaming about connecting two unrelated ideas in a new way.

Using Case Studies

This is where you’re sharing with the audience how you got a specific result or solved a challenge, usually after (countless) trials and errors.

What you’ve read so far is one such example.

If there’s something you should get out of this article, remember this:

An article in case study format that features an eye-candy title can captivate audiences for ages. Hide a treasure within, and you have a high chance to make that article go “viral”.

If you have something to ask or share about this post, then I’m waiting for your input in the comment section below. Let’s take the discussion further.  I’d like to know about other captivating blog titles that you’ve stumbled upon (maybe some of them are yours, so feel free to mention their link and title).

About John Gibb

John Gibb runs an affiliate marketing blog, HealthyWealthyAffiliate.com teaching content writing and product reviews. He wrote a free affiliate marketing guide - "The Road to Success" - detailing the free methods that he used to generate a record breaking 109 affiliate sales in a single day. You can learn more by following him on Twitter, Facebook or Google+.

  • Andi Leeman

    Hi John and Matt, a very interesting post, article headlines are very important but as you say they still need some relevance to the topic otherwise you will do more harm than good.

    I don’t mind when people use unrelated topics to create a post if they gel well, I wrote a few posts about a couple of documentaries that discussed some extreme hobbies which used modern technology and how that technology could be used for similar less extreme hobbies which gelled well in my opinion.

    I do struggle though when I see posts where the writer has tried to create a ‘5 Marketing Tips I Learned From Daffy Duck When I Was 5′ kind of thing because they work. they seem to be everywhere and often are poorly put together.

    There is a lot to consider when writing good articles isn’t there? :-)

    • http://twitter.com/JohnBanksBlog John Banks

      Yes – Andi I agree. There is a lot to think about. In fact, I would say Titles are probably one of my weakest strengths. I tend to worry about the content rather than the title. But, its the title that is arguably just as important if not more so. If readers are not drawn in by the title then they will not even read the post.

      People judge a book by their covers. And a blog post by their titles……

      Excellent post John, well put together Matt.

      • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

        Cheers John!

        Think titles are so important for bloggers. That (and your featured image) is what will catch your readers eye and encourage them to click on it. You could have the best post in the world, but if nobody clicks on it, then it will go to waste.

        Having said that, I know I could improve on some of my titles, don’t always come up with a decent one.

        • John Gibb

          hi Matt,

          Right! When it comes to blogging, or content marketing, the image is as important as the title itself… I often didn’t give much though to images, but now I come to the conclusion that they go hand in hand with the featured article title, and it’s something one can ignore at their own peril.

          Thank you for commenting on this aspect, much appreciated!

          P.S. One way to improve your titles, is to come up with a dozen of variations, and go with the one that you feel works the best. You might also want to show them to others (friends, contacts, readers) and get their opinion, or do a survey/pool or something…

          I feel like there should be a WP plugin where we can “split-test” 3, 5 and even 7 headline variations, and see which gets the most clicks.

          What do you guys think about such? Am I a dreamer? LOL

          • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

            That would be a great plugin to use, though I don’t know whether that would be feasible as your title gets shown on Google. May be one to keep an eye out for though

      • John Gibb

        hey John,

        I used to think titles as not as important as the content itself, but after reading more posts on what makes an article great, I’ve realized the true meaning of a title.

        If you’re into Google rankings as much as I am, you know that the title is as important as keywords in the SEO game.

        hope you got some value from the post, and the additional links I’ve shared.

        thank you for the feedback, appreciate it!

    • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

      I know what you mean about the Daffy Duck example. Though you only have to change it to something (or in this case someone) that is related to your niche.

      But even then, the whole point of adding a title like that is to get people to notice it. I love film, so if I was browsing a blog and saw something like “10 Marketing Tips I Learned From Watching Fight Club”, I’d be intrigued. (that’s not a real post as far as I know)

      Of course, you’d have to follow up with a good post, but I would have clicked on it and that is the point.

      Daffy Duck would certainly be an interesting one to try to put together :)

      • John Gibb

        Good! I’d make that title even more specific like…

        “10 Marketing Tips I Learned About Doubling Your Clientele From Watching Fight Club”

        Why? Because “marketing tips” is too general and doesn’t promise a benefit dear to readers like “Doubling Your Clientele” for e.g.; just my 2 cents, hope it helps.

        • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

          Hi John,

          Yes, adding some specificity to the title can definitely help.

          Thanks again for the great post John! :)

    • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

      I know what you mean about the Daffy Duck example. Though you only have to change it to something (or in this case someone) that is related to your niche.

      But even then, the whole point of adding a title like that is to get people to notice it. I love film, so if I was browsing a blog and saw something like “10 Marketing Tips I Learned From Watching Fight Club”, I’d be intrigued. (that’s not a real post as far as I know)

      Of course, you’d have to follow up with a good post, but I would have clicked on it and that is the point.

      Daffy Duck would certainly be an interesting one to try to put together :)

  • http://www.giftsspace.com/blog Online Strategies

    This is very true. Considering the less time a new visitor is estimated to spend in your blog reading your content, it’s very vital that your blog should have captivating titles so that they are helped to appreciate the rest of the content.

    • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

      I always think of it like walking into a book shop for the first time. You have all of these excellent books to choose from, but can’t read them all. So you end up choosing one based on the title (and cover).

      The book with the dull boring title/cover may end up being a better book, but you will never know because you picked the interesting one that caught your eye.

  • https://www.facebook.com/MissClairT Clair Trebes

    Hi John & Matt

    This is such a great post, I read a lot of posts that focus on writing “killer content” and then people often forget to make a title as compelling – and that really is the shop window – if it’s not appealing people won’t enter.

    I’ve had to book mark this as the post is incredibly valuable because of the links to some really great sounding posts :)

    Lots more adding to my reading list to be done!

    Clair

    • John Gibb

      Clair,

      I’m glad you’ve found this post useful, and like the links I collected inside. Those are really great articles you should bookmark and read often…. then implement the tips exposed into your writing/business.

      Would you mind asking you: what do you write/blog about? And what keeps you awake at night? :)

      I sometimes find myself skimming through great content, but not take notes. I highly recommend you take notes, and re-read them particularly if you’re reading posts late at night when your attention span is probably low (as in my case)

      You’ve made my day, thank you!

      • https://www.facebook.com/MissClairT Clair Trebes

        Hi John,

        Sorry for late reply, I’ve been away on a tiny island and had LOADS on!

        I blog about Social Media mainly as thats my speciality (and my business) but I also LOVE to write about music and the things I do socially in that environment – I guest write at a few different sites on that level.

        I also look after my family business site which is in printing and design so invariably I blog about that sector too!

        I enjoy writing a LOT so that tip you’ve given re the note taking has been absorbed :) Thanks again John!

        C

    • http://onlineincometeacher.com/ Matt Smith

      All the posts John linked to are great! Read through them before I published this. Thought that was one of the best things about this post. Not only do you get great info, but links to even more great info. Win – Win :)