Do you Need an Effective Headline?


Do you Need an Effective Headline?

As you call the content, it will sell itself. Is there a perfect headline formula with 100% efficiency? Perhaps a recent study from Norwegian marketers will shed light on this pressing issue.

The title of this article is written in the form of a question with a direct orientation to the reader (you / you). Such headings have a greater response among users as opposed to affirmative or purely interrogative headings, devoid of direct or indirect treatment. Of course, the clickability of the heading depends on the topic, services, your target audience, so we are talking more about the trend than the notorious formula for success.

The statement builds on a recent study from the Norwegian business school in Oslo.
The task of empirical analysis was to find out which headings have the highest CTR indicators. Two sites were chosen as the test execution site: a social network for microblogging Twitter and FINN ─ a Norwegian site for the sale and auction of various goods and services.

4 Types of Headers

The auction site mainly used 4 types of headlines. Consider them on the example of sales of the 4th generation iPhone.

Statement of fact: Black iPhone4 16GB for sale
A question not addressed to the reader: Who needs a new iPhone4?
Question addressed to the reader: Is this your future iPhone4?
A rhetorical question: Is everyone sure that iPhone4 is the best phone?

Twitter experiment
Over the course of 4 months, Norwegian experts tested the effectiveness of the above types of headings on a Twitter audience. To avoid inaccuracies in evaluating the results, two heading options were undertaken:

A. Headings without addressing the reader, including type 1 and type 2.
B. Headings addressed to the reader, including only 3 types.

From rhetorical, hypothetical, dividing questions (Today the weather is fine, haven’t you? You didn’t write off the test, were you?) And questions that included the answer, you had to refuse.

Research results
The data obtained after the study cannot be called supernatural. To be as objective as possible, scientists said that “further research on this issue is desirable.” Depending on the product category, one and the same type of header was used differently. It is strange that the report did not say a word about the cultural background. A headline that worked in Europe does not necessarily prove effective in, say, Asia or Africa.

At the same time, the Norwegian initiative cannot be blamed for a waste of time and effort. Based on a variety of examples and product categories, they produced average headlines with potentially greater efficiency. Today’s users are more attracted to questions aimed directly at the reader. Perhaps this is how they feel that they are being addressed as living people, and not to some faceless target audience?

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