The Word Factory team produces upwards of 50 articles most months. That's a boatload of headlines. And at that volume, it's easy to lose your motivation to write super-good ones. And unlike an old-school newsroom, we don't have a copy desk with primarily responsibility for crafting attention-getting heads. Like every busy content producer out there, we have to sharpen our own axes. So just like my 36 ways to start any piece of writing, we now have 6 kinds of awesome headlines:

  1. Answering a question? Ask it in the headline: Can you really afford to put off that visit to your tax accountant?
  2. Got some kick-ass data? Mention it in the headline: 53 percent of employees say well-stocked breakrooms make them more productive.
  3. Promoting a product? Hit me with a benefit: BilgeVAP evaporates away the water portion of oily bilge water, gray water and even treated black water
  4. Sharing a list? Put a number on it: 4 ways to write better headlines

I can hearing you saying, "But, Margot, what about SEO keywords?" Look, some SEO keywords make sense in headlines, like "breakrooms" or "bilge water" in the examples above. But remember that relevance drives more sales than robots, so write heads that attract human readers, not algorithmic ones. Thus, semantical key words and phrases have more value than low-competition key words favored by some of our friends on the SEO team.

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