No matter whether it’s a sign in Times Square or a fast-paced social media network, headlines compete for attention in a crowded landscape. Make sure your headlines grab more attention by breaking the worst headline habits.
Here are five terrible headline habits that may be hurting your bottom line, with expert advice on avoiding these mistakes:
1. Your headlines are too pushy.
The content aggregation service Outbrain conducted a study on headlines. The survey says headlines perceived by readers as pushy get up to 20 percent fewer clicks than those perceived as less pushy.
What makes a headline pushy? According to Outbrain, using words such as “you” or “your” or any verb that tells the reader they “must” or “should” do something is too pushy.
A study from MyPRGenie says journalists and bloggers are especially resistant to pitches and headlines that seem pushy. Although 66 percent of journalists and bloggers say they use press releases in their work at least once a week, more than 70 percent say pushy headlines and subject lines will earn a fast trip to the recycle bin.