Want More Followers? Write Better Headlines
There's a push around Hive social media to attract more traffic from search engines. I know of at least 2 examples:
At LeoFinance, @taskmaster4450le, @forexbrokr, and @hitmeasap (among others) are emphasizing the importance of SEO-- Search Engine Optimization-- to help articles get a better chance of being found by people using Google and other search engines. If we want our posts to reach Page 1 of any search engine (especially Google), SEO is vital.
At Loving HIVE-- by way of @taskmaster4450le-- @ryzeonline wrote about the importance of doing marketing right. While many of the people who make Hive blockchain and social possible in many ways are good or great at what they do, marketing Hive isn't it. That's just a fact, and even they will admit this is true.
SEO isn't difficult, but we need to be relentless in using it. Even older posts can benefit from SEO, especially if they provide content good for any time. Backfitting older posts to use SEO will take a while, but the increased traffic to Hive from search engines pays off big-time in increased ad revenues.
Covering SEO requires its own post or series of posts, but there is one item each of us can improve immediately: Headlines
Growing up in a bad neighborhood in New York City in the 1970s and 1980s wasn't fun, and much of the news reports on TV and in newspapers was about crime. The constant drip-drip-drip of those reports had a profound impact on children and young adults back then. Most of us turned out OK, but that drip-drip-drip had to have an impact on us somehow.
Back then, crime happened so often it was just background noise to us after a while. Yes, we took precautions to be careful, but it wasn't fun. After a while, reports on TV and in newspapers became one big blur; nothing to remember unless it struck home in a personal way.
Out of all the crime reports I encountered during those years, I only remember one just for the headline alone:
Image source: NPR.org
This headline became legendary:
- the headline itself was the subject of a number of TV reports and newspaper articles;
- it made its was into pop culture while WWW was over ten years into the future;
- it became a meme before we knew about memes;
- books about marketing and advertising refer to this headline.
I think I read about this event; I can't recall. I know it was on TV. I don't remember much if anything about the details of this killing.
But I remembered this headline far into my future.
Old Headline in Today's World
Had this headline appeared in this time, it would have been considered click-bait. By itself click-bait is neither good nor bad; it's just a tool like a computer or a hammer.
Bad click-bait makes you feel cheated when you click on the link and end uphaving to make 187 clicks befor you arrive at the content you wanted to see.
Good click-bait, on the other hand, delivers the goods. You would have been taken to the article about that event, and you would understand why the headline was perfect for that article.
The Power of Headlines
If that headline can have that much impact on many people who encountered it, imagine what a headline of that caliber can do for your posts here and elsewhere.
None of us should expect to win awards for the headlines we add to our posts, although winning lottery contests here would be cool.
However, we can improve our SEO game by making better headlines-- not just the H1 headline for post title but also H2 headlines for relevant topic subheadings.
Observed Characteristics of Effective Headlines
This is what I've noticed on high-traffic web sites:
- the headlines are similar to search queries any of us would make;
- the headlines are clear;
- the headlines make a point;
- the headlines are quick summaries of the content beneath them.
I don't claim to be an expert in SEO (yet), but I'm learning from role models I encounter in various tribes and communities.
How To Make SEO-Friendly Headlines
- Summarize the purpose or point of the post in one sentence.
- Remove excess words from this headline.
- Test the headline from 2) by using search engines to see what suggestions come up.
- Adjust your headline as needed.
- Include the headline (or some form of it) in the content below it.
One More Considration
Headlines need to be mobile-friendly.
When all we had for surfing the Web was a personal computer or a workstation, SEO wasn't a thing.
When SEO became a thing but mobile devices were still in the future, screens were big enough for most headlines as they were intended.
Once mobile devices became the rage, screen space was at a premium. That meant headlines needed to respect that space.
Some people may be using mobile devices to read your post after a search engine brings it to them. Long headlines on small devices make the reading experience a bit more difficult than expected. Even if they thought your post was valuable in some way, would they want to read other posts from you? If they encounter another long headline, they may pass on future content from you.
No one wants to hear that, but how often have we reacted in this way?
Other Benefits of Better Headlines
Just as better headlines help Hive social in the SEO game, better headlines also help us as Hivers.
Although there are some Hivers who don't have much of a presence because they truly don't understand writing or posting, many Hivers have lots to offer their tribes and communities...
... If only they could get noticed.
There are many reasons why this is the case for Hivers like us (I'm still in this group, so it's true for me, too). While I don't know enough to explain why this is so or what we can do to fix that, I know enough to say that improving our headlines should help us and can't hurt.
For some posts we write, effective headlines are a no-brainer. For other posts, it's harder to come up with them; it's our mission to find that effective headline.
If people are interested enough to click on our headline to read our posts, and they leave the post wondering about us, we didn't do the headline right. But if they leave the post feeling good about what we wrote and give us another look and they like that post, perhaps that's enough reason for them to follow us. I want to say "yes," but the fact is I don't know at this time.
When I find something which worked for me, I want to share that with my fellow Hivers so they can save time living the dream on Hive. New Hivers can benefit from that knowledge, and it's a way for me to use my self-interest in service of others.
Just as important is providing cautionary tales so that others can avoid those mistakes. If you've tried sending out for tokens for PIZZA, BEER, LUV, etc. when you weren't ready to do so, you know exactly what I mean.
Either way, better headlines and effective headlines make it easier for us to achieve whatever we set out to he when we post and when we post over time.
Many Hivers here, in a variety of ways, are finding ways to bring organic search traffic to their tribes and communites, and more broadly to Hive. Marketing as a whole is important in this push. Included in that push is SEO, and SEO is something each of us can do right now.
"Do it now!!
Image source: FourThreeFilm.com
One key piece of SEO involves the headlines we use. Headlines don't need to be memorable or legendary, but they need to be effective.
Effective headlines cause search engines to rank the post higher, and a higher search engine results page ranking give the post a better chance of attracting people to your post on Hive.
It's a numbers game, and SEO is a tool to put the numbers in our favor if we know what we're doing. Making effective headlines is vital in our SEO efforts not just for search engines but within Hive as well.
|My main focus is cryptocurrencies from a number of angles (educational, commentary, observations, even pop culture). A secondary focus is sharing my discoveries about the world of Hive social.|
Most of my posts can be found at these two locations:
* LeoFinance : https://leofinance.io/@magnacarta
* Proof of Brain : https://proofofbrain.io/@magnacarta
For posts I make at other tribes or communities, start by going here to locate them :
* Ecency: https://ecency.com/@magnacarta/posts
I also expect Festivus to take off in popularity in the coming years.
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Definitely I must add to it by saying it is not just all about writing content or posting post on the group chat alone,but I want to say the most important part of it should be putting a very good and educative one which will attract the attention of all individual on this platform and I must say that have comes across some individual whose content as really topped it and I must say we need more people like that in this community to help motivate others to do more
Educational and informative conent is good is important, but by itself is not enough. People familiar with someone's work understand that person's work. Howevver, what about people encountering your work for the first time? There are more of those people (for all of us) then there are regular readers (never mind followers) familiar with what they read.
Sadly, people need a reason to read our content when they have never read it before. For many people, the length of this post alone is enough reason for them to stay away-- even if they read it and agree with it, do they want to read more long content? Some will, some won't.
In many cases, the post's headline is the only chance we get to attract readers to a post, and we need to make it count. Boring headlines-- even if 100% true-- won't get that done for us, so boring headlines are failures.
The most important part of any post we write is the headline. That's what attracts readers to the post. Only after they reach the post by clicking the headline will readers give the post a chance for an upvote, a comment, a reblog, or even a follow. Average posts with superior headlines get more engagement than good posts with inferior headlines. We don't learn this in school, but it's as true as the sun rising in the east and settinng in the west.
Good content is what we want to offer everyone, but it's the headline which gives the content a fighting chance to be read. We need both.
Fantastic post, and I totally agree. Thanks for linking to my marketing post, and I'd like to point out that I've written about headlines many times in the 3 months I've been here, including:
Your post here is great because it puts more of an SEO spin on things than I did, and I love how you go back to pre-internet years to show just how deeply a headline can touch human beings. That headless body, topless bar line is pure genius, and I'd love to write headlines that good. Hopefully others who are reading this will be inspired to do similar.
Reblogging because Hivers needs this. Thank you so much for writing this, and wishing you a great day. (Also thanks to @taskmaster4450le , as it seems he funneled my marketing post to you?)
Anyway, wishing you and all involved a great day! 🙏
You're welcome. we need all the help we can get, especially if we want Hive to grow (and, as a result, our earnings and reputations here and elsewhere). Since Hivers are here for many reasons but with a few common goals, Hivers helping Hivers is the way to go.
We're at a point where many of us are getting the engagement we lacked before; the next step is for us to reach the next level and establish a readership with followers. Part of that depends on time, but part of it depends on changes or adjustsments we can make to shorten that time period.
@ taskmaster4450le is one of the most prolific writers on Hive, and people using search engines to find content encounter his content, and in the process generating organic search traffic. He has discovered SEO thanks to the more SEO-oriented people at LeoFinance, and he has been contributing to the shift toward using SEO. While people using search engines are more likely to find his content, each of us can use the same SEO techniques to help our content get discovered. Part of that involves making attention-grabbing headlines.
I totally agree, and my best to help however I can. Shortening the time is a great aim.
Yes, I believe he write mostly about crypto/Hive/finance, I've seen his name pop up often, and I'm glad he's increasing his SEO abilities. I wonder what people are 'googling' or what keywords are wise to aim for. Anyway, I'll keep turning up my headline game. Thanks for a great post and discussion!🙏
@ taskmaster4450le writes about the present situation as well as future trends. His writings involving crypto aren't about how the coins are performing , but rather how cryptocurrency itself is transforming everything it touches. Along the way he'll answer questions about things some of us don't understand.
Understood and appreciated, seems like a great guy! :) 🙏
Hey @ryzeonline , I didn't see that free clinic offer, otherwise you would have had me bugging you.😂
I'm going to read the articles you point out...I'm sure they'll be helpful to me.
Hey @ryzeonline , yo no vi esa oferta de clínica gratuita, sino me hubieses tenido fastidiándote.😂
Voy a leer los artículos que señalas...seguro serán de utilidad para mí
Todo bien, @sindetalles , estoy encantado de ampliar la oferta a ti, solo tienes que decirme un titular que te gustaría elevar y lo trabajamos. Y espero que disfrutes de los artículos, ¡los he escrito con cariño! 🙏
Great content. I like what you indicate here, because we are all consumers and we click on a publication precisely because of the headline or the image it presents, rather than the author (although there are some creators who are a must read and I have always said that @taskmaster4450 is one of them).
Excellent suggestions, thanks for sharing them.
I think I have a lot of work to do
Gran contenido. Me gusta lo que indicas acá, porque todos somos consumidores y cliqueamos sobre una publicación precisamente por el titular o por la imagen que presente, más que por el autor (aunque hay algunos creadores que son lectura obligada y siempre he dicho que @taskmaster4450 es uno de ellos).
Excelentes sugerencias, Gracias por compartirlas.
Creo que tengo mucho trabajo por hacer
I read this about a week ago and didn’t comment until I tried implementing all of your advice from this article on my post and it worked like magic