The Headline is 80% of the Message

According to “The Father of Advertising,” David Oglivy, five times as many people are likely to read the headline of an article or advertisement than the content it introduces. This was true during Oglivy’s “Mad Men”-era of advertising, and is even more relevant today, with publishers and content marketers competing in digital environments where an abundance of material is always present.

The power of the headline is enough to make any marketer scurry after the latest trends and hottest buzzwords. But while overly sensationalist headlines may initiate clicks, such tactics do little to drive your broader marketing goals, and can immediately undermine any foothold of trust with consumers.

Content marketing is a way to build your brand’s reputation, so think of headlines as a means by which to make a first impression to your readers – and making that first impression a good one requires catching readers’ interests. Headlines should make consumers curious about topics or introduce them to new ones.

So, how can you generate successful headlines while maintaining the trust and respect of your market?