How To Write Better Blog And Social Media Titles In 3 Easy Steps

February 19, 2014By
Dayne Shuda 2013

Change your titles just a little to get a lot more social media interaction.

There are a lot of variables that go into how many clicks you get from tweets on Twitter and shares on other social sites.

A few years ago there was a great study put out on YouMoz that gave some insight into click behavior on Twitter.

The study found that the click-through rate for a tweet that included a link was 1% on a click to follower rate. It varied by the number of followers you have, but basically if you have 1,000 followers on Twitter you’ll get about 5-10 clicks for your tweets that contain a link.

That’s not a lot of clicks, but there are some ways you can improve your odds.

Many of the tweets shared on Twitter that contain links are simple shares of content where the tweet has the content title and a link to the page.

This is where the title becomes very important. If the content you share in that tweet isn’t enticing you’re not going to get clicks and traffic.

When it comes to blogging and sharing your posts on Twitter it is all about the title of your post or the content you share in your tweet.

At GBW, we’ve been testing different titles and social media content to see if we can get more clicks.

Here is the process we’ve used to improve the titles.

Step 1 – Statements Should Be News Or Studies

One thing I’ve learned over the years about blog titles is that statements generally don’t entice the most clicks. The content might be great, but if you word the title as a general statement it usually won’t make people want to click.

So we try to stay away from statements and instead opt for lists and questions, which we’ll see below.

If we use statements we make sure they’re studies or news items.

Here are a couple examples:

General Statement Title (Avoid This): Any Business Can Start A Blog

News Statement (Do This): [Big Brand Name] Launches Exciting New Blog

Studies (Do This): Study Finds That Businesses That Blog Get 59% More Traffic

Step 2 – Turn Statements Into Lists Or Steps

If our post topic isn’t a news item or study we try to turn them into lists or at least a title with numbers. There is just something about numbers that seems to get more clicks from social media. Another way to make the change is to use steps. This gives the potential reader clear action items to follow. People like to read news, but if you give them a pathway to success they’ll be more likely to read.

General Statement Title (Avoid This): Any Business Can Start A Blog

List Title (Do This): 10 Lessons From 10 Startups That Have Launched Great Blogs

Steps Title (Do This): Follow These 10 Steps To Launch Your Business Blog

Step 3 – Flip Statements To Ask Questions

Finally, the other thing we do is turn statements into questions. People seem to like the idea of finding out the answer.

General Statement Title (Avoid This): Any Business Can Start A Blog

Question Title (Do This): Are You Following These 5 Easy Steps For Starting A Blog?

General Statement Title (Avoid This): Identifying Your Blog Readers

Question Title (Do This): Have You Identified Your Ideal Blog Reader?

Final Thoughts

There are lots of ways to do titles. We stick to the formulas above, but we also experiment with different styles.

A few last thoughts…

Titles with “How To” in them usually do well. They do even better if you include a number or two numbers. One of our most popular posts was How To Turn 1 Blog Post Into 20 Unique Social Media Shares.

Using words like “secret”, “mistake” and a few others also seem to do well in titles.

Conclusion

Social media is a big part of any blogging strategy. It’s good to have search engine traffic, but you can’t rely on Google to always send you traffic. They’re doing things to change the amount of traffic they send to websites for free. So it’s good to get traffic from a variety of sources and because there is a variety of social media sites it’s beneficial to get clicks from those.

Follow the steps above to improve your blog and social media titles and you should see your social media traffic increase.