Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Kate Middleton is Expecting
by Gary Fearon, Creative Director
I know. Your reaction to that title is either "Who cares?" or "Have I got the right blog?"
Purely to make this point, I chose a title from today's headlines that a lot of people are searching for. (It was either that or Shania Twain's catsuit.) To satisfy anyone's curiosity, or to make things worse, I've included appropriate photos here as well. However, I've tagged the picture of Kate with the words "Lindsay Lohan" and "IRS", inviting further googling mayhem.
If your goal is to attract new visitors to your blogpost, the title can make all the difference. What title will draw people in? The best answer to that question is: What will people be typing in their search bar when they're looking for the kind of content you've just written?
Perhaps you've written a post on fiction writing. You could title it "Fiction Writing", but it will get lost in the sea of (literally) 361 million other results for "fiction writing" on Google.
Get a little more specific. Does your post offer "fiction writing prompts"? Title it thusly and you only have 3 million other sites as competition. (Hey, you've narrowed it down to a tenth of what you started with!)
Get even more specific with "Creative Fiction Writing Prompts" and there are just a half a million results competing with yours.
Clearly the more descriptive keywords you get in your title, the more likely someone searching for your info will find you. Adding a "How to..." or "10 Tips for..." often doesn't hurt, and might make your title stand out. Nothing wrong with being emphatically literal in an instructional post title.
But maybe what you've written is of a more creative nature. For this, clever is good, if it at least has some clear correlation to the content. "It's Christmas Time" as a title just sits there, but "Why I'm Afraid to Look in My Refrigerator" is a guaranteed hit. In fact, if you wrote a post by that title right now, you'd be the first one online. Hurry up, 'cause I kinda like it.
Of course, people aren't specifically googling "afraid to look in my refrigerator", but if you promote an irresistibly intriguing blogpost title on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest, people will find you and recommend it to their friends.
Instructional bloggers needn't feel left out of the creative loop. Combine creativity with description if you like, and come up with "Deal or No Deal: 10 Ways to Pitch to a Publisher".
These suggestions are just the tip of the titling iceberg, and can readily apply to book titles as well. If you'd like us to address this topic further in a future post, simply leave a comment below, preferably one that has nothing to do with this post, but rather refers to something straight from the celebrity gossip columns.
Shania thanks you!