Let’s face it, if the titles/headlines of your blog posts, newsletters, or emailing marketing campaigns aren’t catchy—no one’s going to click through and read it. Did you know that copywriters spend about 25% of their time writing the content itself, and about 75% of their time brainstorming, crafting, and testing titles? *That’s* how important titles are to getting readers to read your stuff!

Wait! Don’t leave yet.

I know you are not a copywriter (most likely), and I know that you don’t have that kind of time to invest into the art of title writing. No worries, I’ve got your back…errr, or should I say…I’ve got your blog? I’ve developed a list of headline and title tips below so that you, a business owner,  can increase your open rates and captivate your readers from the very beginning.

Best Open Rates By Title Types

Copywriting Tips for Headlines and Titles

Image credit: Yesterdays news by (Mick Baker)rooster at flickr.


Not all titles are created equally. In the image above, you can see that titles which contain numbers far outperform those that don’t. Likewise, titles that directly address a reader’s problem outperform “How-To” posts.

I don’t want you to get too caught up in the stats at the moment. Instead, I want you to focus on the following tips. These tips will assist you in combining the art + science of titles, without you having to enroll in copywriting school.

Write Headlines and Titles Like a Pro

It’s time for you to learn a few little headline hacks that will increase your open rates. {sandy, can we do a tweet this here with link back to online NL)

Keep your titles to 55 characters or less. Google rewards you for this.

Brainstorm at least 10 titles per writing piece. Once you get going, you will find that this is easier than it sounds.

Readers are influenced by the first 3 and last 3 words in your headlines—so make those words count.

Let’s pause for a minute so you can see this in action…

  • The title of this piece is “5 Tips for Becoming a Pro at Writing Headlines and Titles”.
  • The first title for this piece was “5 Tips for Writing Headlines and Titles Like a Pro”. In the 2nd version, I changed the title so that the first three words “5 Tips for” and the last three words “Headlines and Titles” caught my reader’s attention from the front of the title until the end.
  • This title weighs in at 57 characters. (And I’m okay with that!)

4. Avoid the frequent advice you’ll find online to write sexy, spicy, or outrageous headlines—unless these topics define your brand. Keep your headlines and titles on-brand.

5. Don’t mislead your readers with false promises. Have you ever clicked on a title, really excited to read the content, and then the content was nothing like what you expected? I call this sleazy marketing. Don’t do it.

Two Title Formulas You Can Master Right Now

1 – The Emotion Formula:

  • ____ (number) Ways to ____(topic or outcome)
  • How to ____
  • Never Be ____ Again!


  • 5 Ways to Have Better Skin Tone
  • How to Write Better Titles
  • Never Be Scared of the Dark Again

2 – The Tell a Secret Formula:

  • An Insider’s Guide to ____
  • My Secret Formula for  ____


  • An Insider’s Guide to Elephant Care
  • My Secret Formula for Keeping My Business Expenses Low

You now have everything you need to go write on-brand, catchy titles to go with all that lovely content you are creating. You are creating content, right? 🙂