“A good title makes all the difference in the world,” says Nolan Wilson of benchmarkemail.com. Included in Wilson’s list of tips for writing engaging blog post titles, (along with including keywords, being short and to the point, and using power words), is the warning to “Deliver on your promise in the body of the post.”
Friend and fellow blogger Michael Reynolds found out that sometimes speakers need to ‘course correct” when the talk fails to match up with the promise in the title. Well, as every freelance blog writer needs to remember, it’s the blog title that sets the online reader’s expectations, and that title needs to be in sync with the content to follow.
The temptation, of course, in selecting a title, whether that’s for a book or a business blog post, is to go for the “catchiest”-sounding word combination rather than the most descriptive. I was thinking about that dilemma the other day while leafing through Knopf Doubleday’s 2014 First Year Common Reading Catalogue.
I divide blog post titles into two types, “Huh?s” and “Oh!s”. The “Huh?s” are the attention-getters, but they need the “Oh!s” as subtitles to make clear what the post is actually going to be talking about.
The Knopf Doubleday catalogue list was chock-full of “Huh?”/”Oh!” combination titles:
Half the Sky:
Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
Women, Work, and the Will to Lead
The Astonishing Connection Between Human and Animal Health
Down the Up Escalator:
How the 99% Live
The title I chose for today’s Say It For You blog post is obviously a simple “Oh!”. With this kind of title, I instruct freelance blog writers to be sure and insert the names of products or services (in my case business blog posts). An “Oh!” title is intended as a direct appeal to searchers already interested in what you have to sell or what you know how to do.
I might have gone the other direction, calling the post “Double Whammy” or “Double Down”. Both “Huh?s” and “Oh!’s” can have a place in business blog post titles, I believe. ((I invite readers’ comments on the choice I made this time.)