The Art of Writing Great Twitter Headlines
If you have established a Twitter account and amassed a group of followers, congratulations. Hopefully, your followers are real people and genuinely interested in what you have to say (otherwise, this is a moot point). Assuming your audience is listening to you, figuring out how to appeal to them is another key strategy. While many may initially find your content to be intriguing, they will not necessarily follow and view every tweet your make without some reason. Learning how to make the most of your Twitter headlines can make the difference between a click and no response.
Know Your Environment
Many legitimate Twitter users are subscribed to and following many different users. This means that whenever they check their feed, there could be an array of different tweets from a variety of Twitter users, each perhaps covering a different subject. In traditional media, four out of five people read any given headline and one out of every five people will read the headline of an article and then proceed to read the content. In the world of social media, these stats are even more skewed. Just because you have 100 followers doesn’t mean that anywhere near that number of people are going to read every tweet of yours.
Keep It Short
Many age-old pieces of advice tell us to keep things short and simple. This could not be truer with Twitter headlines, which goes to show that some advice is timeless. Twitter does a good job of limiting our expression, but you must go above and beyond that and really determine how to motivate people in approximately 150 characters or less. If you can make it shorter, go for it. Each headline should accurately describe the subject or content, while also being impressive and intriguing to the reader. Saying “Click here for info” simply will not suffice. We recommend using detailed verbs that grab the reader’s attention; you can be both intelligent and flashy at the same time – and keep in under the character limit.
Tips for Your Headline
There are several individual criteria that you should strive to meet in every headline. While it may seem like a lot for just a hundred or so characters, aiming at the hearts and minds of your readers is crucial if you want your content to stand above the rest. The headline should display a sense of utility, making it seem informative and purposeful. There is also a sense of urgency that you should convey in each headline, making it seem like a “read now or never” story. You will also want to make the headline and content seem unique to the reader, all the while combining the aspects mentioned above into one easy to understand headline.
Tracking Your Virality
Pingler offers a simple tool, the Twitter Links Finder, which will show you all the mentions, re-tweets and comments associated with any given URL. If a recent headline of yours links to a specific page, simply input that URL and you will be able to see all the related tweets that mention this URL. This is the best tool to use if you are trying to track down how far your website’s mentioning has reached, and whether or not your tactics are working.