Do you know how to write effective PR headlines? A headline is the shortest element of a press release, yet it plays the most crucial role. In fact, your headline could be more important than the press release itself because it’s what convinces a journalist to open the press release. Unfortunately, many people treat the headline as an afterthought instead of a major aspect of an effective PR headline.

Out of 10 people, 8 are bound to read your headline. However, out of 10, only 2 will click the link to access the entire content of your document – whether it’s a press release or blog post. These 2 people will only read the rest of your content if the headline is captivating.

Writing effective PR headlines is an art. Luckily, it’s not rocket science. You can write powerful headlines by simply remembering the fundamentals. In this guide, we will share the best tips and tricks for effective PR headlines

How to write effective PR headlines

1) Pay attention to the language you use

When you are writing a headline, avoid long sentences and complex words. Additionally, do not use uninspiring and bland words. Simplicity is usually the best course. Yes, it’s true that you need to be creative, but don’t use overly extravagant phrases that most people won’t understand.

Adding a call to action (CTA) to your headline gives it incredible power. CTAs encourage readers to follow a particular direction. They address the reader directly to prompt immediate action and create an element of intrigue. They also leverage relatable language to hook the audience and encourage them to read the entire content.

In a nutshell, you need a headline that’s relatable, conversational, and powerful.

2) Make the reader a priority

When writing your headlines, it’s important to think about your reader. Once you’ve identified the kind of person who would read this content, then you will have a better idea of what they need. With this knowledge, you can create a headline that speaks to them directly. This kind of headline will also boost the chances of your audience reading the rest of the release.

3) Stick to high-volume keywords

If you’re writing a headline without keywords, then it’s a waste of precious time. Nowadays, keywords rule online space and help you capture the attention of relevant audiences. For instance, high-volume keywords will capture the attention of your target audiences. These are readers with an interest in the specific topics outlined by your keywords.

Picking the right keywords increases the probability of these readers clicking through and reading the rest of your content. That said, you should target people with an interest in a specific topic. Unless you do so, your article will never get noticed. Before you begin writing, you can do research on keywords with top performance and identify those you’d like to incorporate into your topic.

Luckily, there are multiple free tools you can access online for keyword research. When you’re choosing your keywords, focus on those with high search volume. Or at least pick a few with medium search volume. At the same time, you shouldn’t focus on those with a very high search volume. They have stiff competition and may not benefit your headline that much.

4) Highlight what’s in the content

Leveraging mystery to inspire curiosity is undoubtedly an effective way to grab the reader’s attention. However, if you’re writing a headline, you can’t use your headline to create mystery. Leaving readers on a cliffhanger with a vague headline creates a situation where they’re guessing what your story is really about and wondering if the rest of it is really worth reading.

Instead of leaving readers guessing, highlight what’s in store for them in the rest of the article. This will encourage them to click through and access the rest of the content.

5) Use figures and listicles to capture attention

We all love a good list. In this day and age, many readers are drawn to texts that mention lists in the headlines. Therefore, to attract the audience, you should include lists in your headline. Oftentimes, the presence of a listicle headline promises brief contents that are easy to digest. And that’s what many readers are looking for.

Therefore, where possible, include list words or numbers in your headline. Sharing ideas, strategies, facts, secrets, reasons, tricks, ways, and tips within your area of specialty is a good way to create lists.

6) Offer informative content

Your readers don’t want sensationalism. Instead, they would love insightful content. They want to learn something new. This is the basic reason why people go online to do searches. It gives them a chance to learn something new about specific topics.

You can use your headlines to demonstrate that your content is insightful. In this case, you’ll need to use words like “quick fix”, “strategies”, “methods,” and any other educational words to evoke interest. Meanwhile, avoid “how to” starters for your headlines. The “how-to” headline is overused and is therefore not as effective these days. Other starter words for your headline include “a complete guide,” “beginners guide,” or “101”.

7) Add some juicy details

In the current age, a good fraction of global readers loves drama or some hint of feuds in articles. On that note, many people are drawn by headlines with elements of drama. Without being over-sensational and dramatic, you can leverage the same concept and create a juicy headline.

8) Demonstrate that your content is worthwhile

You should be using your headline to demonstrate the significance of the contents of your article. The headline simply highlights why the reader should read the rest of the article. It’s more of a sales pitch that promises great things ahead if the reader opens the press release or article.

At the same time, you should avoid being salesy or pushy. The best course of action is to demonstrate the value of the content using easy language. For example “The Best Tips and Tricks for Effective PR Headlines”, features a list format and promises resourceful information.

9) Cover as many of the 5Ws as possible

The 5Ws are fundamental principles in writing both articles and effective PR headlines. They will help you in defining the headline and enable the readers to understand it. At that point when you’re struggling to find ideas for your content, they can even be inspirational. That being said, the 5Ws include Why, Where, When, What, and Who. These questions are engaging guides that will help you focus on the most crucial details and create a headline that reels your readers in.

10) Use the second person

How you write your article or press release matters a lot. How you address the reader is especially important. Leveraging the second person in your headlines will make them much more powerful. That’s because it addresses the reader directly. As a result, it draws their attention and engages them.

You’ll need words like you, you’ll, your and you’re. Calling the reader out using the second person is even more effective if you’re using your content for marketing.

11) Avoid mystery

Mystery is a compelling writing tool that some of the greatest writers have used to keep people hooked but mystery has no place in your PR articles. If you craft a vague headline, people are unlikely to go digging in your article for the real story. Remember, people are not as invested in your press release as they would be in a novel. Either steer clear of mystery and be as clear as you can or risk losing a reader’s attention.

Do you need to hire a professional to write effective PR headlines?

Do you need help writing a headline that will make heads turn? Backed by a team of PR specialists, expert writers and creative designers, Pressfarm can help you do that. Beyond writing compelling headlines, the team at Pressfarm is skilled at developing professional press releases, compelling guest posts, and creative media kits. All of this content is designed to help you make a splash in your industry.

In addition to creating this quality content for your brand, Pressfarm’s content distribution strategy is designed to help you put your news in front of the right eyes. By submitting your content to the right media outlets and startup directories, Pressfarm can boost your online visibility and ensure your brand features in relevant search results across different search engines. Additionally, Pressfarm’s media database of over 1 million contacts is designed to help you to keep doing media outreach for your brand for up to one year after you sign up.

If publicity is what you need for your brand, then Pressfarm is the right way to go.