This post was originally published on Kenn’s blog Coaching Sites That Work.
When you title your blog articles, crafting a good title is huge. A bad title will turn people away from reading it and a good one will engage them right from the outset.
I don’t have to tell you that the more people read your articles, the more they become familiar with you, trust you, and see you as an expert coach. And clients love hiring experts!
So, if you’re actively blogging or putting out articles to draw attention to your business, here’s one thing to watch out for that reduces the number of people who read your writing – spilling the beans!
Spilling the beans means giving away the secret.
That is, in your article titles, you don’t want to give away the good stuff in the headline. This will cause you to lose the reader as he/she will either think she gets the article or will discount the article as “common advice”.
An example will help …
Let’s say you saw the following article out on the web, Lose Weight with Exercise.
This article title is problematic because it gives away the advice – to exercise. This title is a bland statement, and there’s nothing about it that says there’s good stuff to be read inside.
So, when someone comes across your article, they will see that you’re suggesting they exercise more. Since they already know this, there’s no need to read your article. Skip.
You’ve just lost a reader.
Now, your article may be amazing as it talks about how to find fun, easy ways to exercise that don’t take time. You may have some super tricks for motivating people to exercise more, perhaps by getting friends involved. Who knows. The point is that your title has spilled the beans and given the reader a reason to NOT dive into your content.
More not-so-hot titles that spill the beans (they are simply statements of advice):
- Set Goals to Succeed
- How to Destress – Take a Vacation
- Become More Enlightened with Meditation
Again, these titles, while they may have some unique, special or amazing content, cause the reader to lose interest.
So, remember to NOT give away the secret. Don’t include the beans in the title.
With our first example, Lose Weight with Exercise, we can hide the secret of the article by simply removing it and adding HOW TO.
Thus, our title will become How to Quickly Lose Weight.
We got rid of the beans (with exercise) and added “How to”.
This is a better title.
Even though it is a better title, unfortunately the subject of “losing weight” has been beaten to death. So, let me give you another move to make for additional enticement.
We can do this by making the beans into mystery beans – that is instead of giving away the secret, we can come up with a new phrase to describe the secret uniquely, like this …
How to Quickly Lose Weight with Ladies Night.
As you can see, instead of “with exercise” we now have “with Ladies Night” – a new, unique, interesting phrase that’s sure to get attention.
In your article, you need to explain this concept – Ladies Night. You can talk about your unique trick for getting exercise (I’m making this one up) which is about getting your female friends together for a long healthy walk with nuts and berries and fun chatting instead of the usual feasting at the diner.
What we have done is replaced the common “with exercise” with something mysterious and unique – Ladies Night.
In summary …
My main piece of advice is to avoid putting the “lesson to be learned” (the beans) into the title, so the reader can’t say, “Oh, I already know what’s in that article.” Instead, take out the beans and add in mystery.
Qs for U
Are you writing articles that spill the beans? Do your titles seem flat or uninteresting? Are your titles sounding like advice or cliches? Have you written a recent article that could use a tweak? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Just post your comments.
Kenn Schroder helps coaches create client-attracting websites. Get your free copy of “5 WEBSITE STRATEGIES FOR ATTRACTING COACHING CLIENTS” at http://www.coachingsitesthatwork.com