Is it so hard to think of a headline?

Man working at office desk, looking at computer and scratching head

I’ve been working on an article for my blog for over a week. Normally I don’t do that I just write something quickly and post, like this one. But for once I thought I would write what I hope is a more thoughtful piece. This isn’t it by the way, I’ll probably post it tomorrow or the weekend when I am finally happy with it.

To help me with the article I’ve been reading a lot of advice blogs particularly about the headline. One particular blog that gives excellent advice is Mostly Blogging . If you don’t follow her I would recommend you do, her advice is fantastic on lots of aspects of blogging. When it came to finding a headline I used two sites she recommends the first one portent is supposed to come up with snappy headlines. I tried it, it made me laugh but wasn’t much help. It might have been because of the subject of my article that it didn’t work. My favourite suggestion was ’10 ways the Beatles cured Dyslexia.’

Leaving that site I went to another which analyses your headlines coschedule . T

his was much better and made you really think about the composition of the title. I played around with this for a bit trying to get a better score. I followed a link from this site which suggested you write 25 different titles for your article and eventually you will come up with some very good ones. I tried this analysing each one, it became another computer game trying to get a high score, and mine was 76 if you’re interested. Once I had written my 25, I highlight those scoring 70 and above. I then asked my wife and two boys to independently read them and pick their favourite, I didn’t explain what the highlighting meant. All three independently picked my favourite one which had scored quite low. My 15 year old even described it as ‘click bait’ (I know teenagers, what can you do?). So I went for that title. I think it’s catchy. It is slightly misleading but ties in with my post’s graphic (another tip form mostly blogging). Which goes to show the tools can be very helpful but nothing beats human intuition, although once you read the article you might all tell me my headline was rubbish.

What is this headline? Well you will have to wait until I’m finally happy with the article and post it!


13 thoughts on “Is it so hard to think of a headline?

  1. Earlier this year I started using a tool like the one you mentioned to grade my headlines as a joke only to see it resulted in a huge jump in clicks. I was forced to come to the realization that I am terrible at headlines. There goes my promising career at the Daily Planet.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This is something I often struggle with. Especially for my Writing A Book? series. At first I wanted to call it ‘On Writing’ but it would get lost in all references to Stephen King’s book of the same title. I think what I ultimately decided works, but it could probably be better. I’m hoping that once all the articles are finished and I combine it into a free ebook, that I’ll come up with something a little more fitting by that point.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi there,
    Firstly, I didn’t even know these things existed (although my other half has just informed me I could pay a fiver and get 5000 Twitter followers too – websites for everything!)

    Goodness knows what one of these tools would think of my headlines though – I’m sure I go for dafter, the better. But then that reflects my personality more than something that was generated by an algorithm! So I think you do right to go with your favourite regardless of where it ‘ranks’. I guess they are a great starting point to generate ideas but I think it has to feel right at the end of the day.

    P.S. Thanks for following 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I never even thought about grading my headlines. What you said makes a lot of sense! I definitely need to start putting a lot more time into my post headlines.

    Liked by 1 person

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