Headline Tip #15: Amuse, Don’t Confuse

by Wes Hanson on May 4, 2012

The confused mind says “no.” Depending on your audience, client, and purpose, a dash of wit, a soupcon of wordplay can be just the thing to reel in your readers. Writing them usually involves more creativity and effort – and makes not just the reading more fun but the writing too. But keeping it simple […]

Headline Tip #11: Twitter Invigorates Headlines

by Wes Hanson on April 30, 2012

With its severe space restrictions Twitter is actually a headline enthusiast’s dream, and a throwback to the earliest days of journalism where short headlines ruled. A well-written short headline puts you ahead on a level playing field where everyone (even the establishment pros) has the same constraints and opportunities. The headline is tailor-made for the […]

Headline Tip #9: Make Dysfunction Function for You

by Wes Hanson on April 19, 2012

Obsessive compulsiveness is rational? Are you crazy? Yes, and no. It’s only logical to fuss over your headlines and opening statements. Look at advertising legends like David Ogilvy and Gene Schwartz, who worked and reworked (and reworked) their headlines and copy openings, devoting at least half their writing time to just the first few words. […]

Headline Tip #8: First Impressions Count

by Wes Hanson on April 18, 2012

Psychologists and emotional intelligence experts warn us to watch the impression we make on people the first time we meet them – these impressions, however fleeting, rarely change. Nor are they wrong. Surprisingly people make accurate snap judgments in a fraction of a second. In a Princeton University study subjects could predict with 70 percent […]

Headline Tip #6: Curiosity Is Catnip to Readers

by Wes Hanson on April 16, 2012

Curiosity may be deadly for felines, but it’s lifeblood for headlines. An intriguing headline can pull readers in like a ball of string. There are endless ways to accomplish this. Your headline might ask a provocative question or make a counterintuitive or even outrageous statement. You’ve got to get readers interested in reading more. Beyond […]