Do “Huh-Oh” Titles Work for Marketing Blogs?


One important purpose of marketing blog titles is attracting online shoppers. So, catchy and engaging as a title might be, it won’t serve the purpose if the words in it don’t match up with those searchers used.

After all my “reading around” – magazines, books, blogs, textbooks – you name it, I’ve come to the conclusion that there are two basic title categories: the “Huh?s” and the “Ohs”. The “Huh?s” need subtitles to make clear what the article is about; “Oh!’s” titles are self-explanatory.

“Huh?-Oh!” combo titles seem to be increasingly popular, I concluded after a recent visit to my local Barnes & Noble the other day. Here are just a few of the dozens of Huh?-Oh! titles I found on the shelves in the sections on business, psychology, and self-help:

  • Seeing Around Corners (Huh?): How to Spot Inflection Points in Business Before They Happen (Oh!)
  • The Communication Clinic (Huh?) 99 Proven Cures for the Most Common Business Mistakes (Oh!)
  • Getting to Yes (Huh?) Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In (Oh!)
  • When (Huh?) The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing (Oh!)
  • The Storyteller’s Secret (Huh?) Why Some Ideas Catch On and Others Don’t (Oh!)

We blog content writers, of course, don’t have the luxury of using such long subtitles, as the search engines will use only a limited number of characters for ranking. Still, the beauty of the “Huh?” is that it’s a grabber, so the compromise might be to include category-based keyword phrases early in the subtitle.

The other way to “sneak” in the “Oh!” material is the meta-tag, the 160 character snippet of text that describes a page’s content. The meta tags don’t appear on the page itself, but readers can see them on the search engine page and they are scanned by search engines.

Huh? In writing engaging business blog content, it can pay to try two-tiered titles.

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