Written on the 3 July 2008 by Altitude Communications
As we saw last week, a headline can mean the difference between your business growing in profit almost overnight, or getting lost amongst everyone else’s messages and marketing gimmicks.
Interestingly, headlines can be placed into different categories. Knowing what they are and how they work can help you to formulate your headline.
1. The News Headline
Everyone wants to know what the latest news is. Appeal to your clients’ and prospects curiosity and thirst for knowledge by giving what you need to say a “newsworthy twist.” If your product is new or improved, this would be the headline for you.
Some examples: ‘New and Improved Formula for Weight Loss’.
‘Announcing Sugar-free Chocolate that Tastes Delicious.’
2. The Question Headline
This is a popular type of heading and one that is very effective. Ask the question on your client’s/prospects’ lips and let them read the answer for themselves in the advertisement text. But remember to ask a question that involves your reader and gets your prospect involved.
Some examples: ‘Do you want the secret to a healthier lifestyle?’
‘What is holding you back from reaching your full earning potential?’
3. The Benefits Headline
The key to sales and marketing success is that benefits sell, not features. So if you choose to talk up your exciting new product in your headline, give them the benefits, not the features. Yes, it is great your new toothpaste contains an advanced fluoride formula, but what does that mean for your prospect?
Spell it out for them; they will feel more compelled to read the advertisement text. But remember to first do your research to find out what benefit will make your prospect take action.
Some examples: ‘Advanced fluoride solution for whiter, stronger teeth.’
‘Get fit, strong and lean while having fun.’
4. The How-to Headline
It has been said that over 7,000 book titles start with the words “How to…” This demonstrates our desire for information that tells us, or shows us, how to do something.
Some examples: ‘How to speak confidently in public.’
‘How to generate more leads and grow your business.’
5. The Testimonial Headline
Often, we are more likely to believe in the authenticity and effectiveness of a product or service if it has been recommended to us by someone else who has tried it, and experienced satisfactory results. You can incorporate their testimonials into your headline too.
Some examples: ‘I lost 10 kilos in only 12 weeks using the new weight loss program.’
‘My business profitability grew by 50% within 2 months of signing up.’
6. The Command Headline
Don’t politely ask your prospects to take action, just tell them! Tell them what they have to do, and how they will benefit.
Some examples: ‘Sign up today and get your free eBook that shows you how to generate more leads and grow your business.’
‘Join today and save $90 off the membership fee.’
Whatever type of headline you decide to use, make sure you find out what is important to your prospects first, so they will be encouraged to read your advertisement and take action.
Copyright Altitude Communications 2008. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be used without the prior written consent from the author. See below for more details...
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