A Complete ClickBait Headline Break-Down: Tips To Improve.

Clickbait Headlines can be elusive, learn how to write powerful and decisive clickbait headlines that serve the purpose of copy be read.

Over the past few years, the visibility of Clickbait Headlines has exploded. This statement is partly true and partly false: Clickbait Headline has been always around, it’s only since the rise of digital media the spread of Clickbatty Headlines has grabbed readers as well as the researcher’s attention.

Above is an example of a Clickbait Headline with only one intention, getting readers to click. But the problem here is that it fails to do the magic. Read on you will find out what is missing.

Misleading Headlines may be catchy, attention-grabbing but it doesn’t deliver the promised result; a copy that doesn’t deliver would certainly contribute to bad brand reputation. A great Clickbait Headline should always follow up with a great copy, but they don’t have to be spammy.

Clickbait Headline is like curiosity inducer, they create an illusion that the reader is missing out on a piece of information and this creates a gap. The informational gap causes discomfort or the need to know more about ‘it’. The need to gather information is a primal human behavior, and a headline is well-crafted with good copy can tap into the emotions that reward the readers with mental pleasure and knowledge will always make an article read more and a product to sell.

A list of reasons are behind a well-crafted headline, let’s explore them one by one:

· The Headline that starts with a number or has a long number in them is a great Clickbait Headline. It is easier to read 7 than seven it is more structured. Your reader doesn’t have the time to go through every word keep your writing organized for quick reading.

Example: 7 Reasons why a long-distance relationship is a failure among millenniums.

· The Headline that is more personalized to the reader that can entice the feeling of implied upon is also a great Clickbait Headline.

Example: 7 Reasons ‘you’ should know before getting in a relationship with a narcissist person.

· The Headline using already established brand/personality recognition to take advantage of their identity to establish authority would attract more visitors to your content.

Example: 7 Tips for success you should know by 25Under25 Awardees.

· The Headline which intrigues the information gap in readers to keep reading to know more about the secrets in the copy is a Clickbait Headline. The downside to such headline is that they are obscure which might frustrate the readers.

Example: ‘This is why’ you are not seeing results with your Facebook Ads campaign.

· The Headline with a motto of achievement for the readers, where it serves as information that would give the readers a sure shot result of the desired goal is a catchy Clickbait Headline.

Example: ‘You can Now’ gain more followers on your Instagram with these 7 hacks.

· The headline which offers an advantage over others when compared. This headline works well with products where the reader is looking for something possible that everlasting/ “if only that was true” high yield.

‘The last’ vacuum cleaner you will ever need.

· The Headline is misleading most of the time yet is most effective in getting more clicks. These headlines conspire a feeling of surprise for the readers is a Clickbait Headline.

Example: 10 Women ‘you won’t believe’ exist.

· The Headline with a dominating tone also with helpful insights can also term as Clickbait Headline. This headline commands the readers with an authority that they must read on to fill the information gap.

Example: 7 reasons ‘why you should’ go to college.

An appealing Clickbait Headline might lure a reader to get more clicks for a headline but it would certainly disappoint the reader if the content fails to deliver the promised solution. But a good copywriter must remember that they don’t just have to please the readers but also the search engine too. Ignoring any one of the prospects will determine the success and failure of your copy. How to rank in search engines is a different topic and a mighty one which I will discuss later in a different article.

Now that we have discussed the best tips for writing a good Clickbait Headline, let us discuss the common mistakes you should know while writing a headline.

· The Hook — This can be described as the benefit the readers get for spending their time on your copy. The Headline should give a glimpse of the copywritten without giving away everything. It should act as a hook for the visitors to grab their attention and make them click on your copy. A Headline that doesn’t imply providing benefit for the reader might get ignored by a reader.

· The Connection — The Connection — As humans, we seek to connect with interesting topics that can be relatable to us personally. Every one of us is looking for answers we ourselves are unable to provide. This is whereas a copywriter your command of words comes into play. A crafted Headline that establishes a connection with the reader with a promise to a solution is also a Clickbait headline.

· The Language — It is been observed that using big words and complicated sentence structure in the headline confuses the readers. Avoid using complexity; know your readers, and the language they use resonates with their communication style and use of simple words.

· The Rush — If the headline has been written with a sense of abundance it will always be tagged as ‘read later’ these headlines fail to create a sense of urgency. The headline should prompt the readers to act upon immediately on reading the headline; it entices a sense of urgency to fill the information gap.

· The Point — Be specific to the topic you intend to write your headline, absence of specificity would create untrustworthy-ness and lack clarity in the reader’s mind which will not result in a favorable outcome for your copy.


· Practice, Practice, Practice. A good copywriter isn’t born with good writing skills practice is what makes them skilled.

· Use split testing to test out each variation. It is advised and practiced by seasoned writers to write a minimum of 10–15 variation and split test each variation until one performs best.

· While writing a Clickbait Headline always make sure your headline is relevant to the actual copy. You don’t want to misguide your audience to ignore your copy with false commitment/promises.

· A Reader will only click through your headline if the headline gives your readers a clear establishment of understanding of the benefit/benefits they will get for their time.

· Know your audience. It is very important as a copywriter to know who is going to read the copy, what are they looking for in the copy, and what tonality and vocabulary would they prefer.

· The Headline should be the last piece to be written after the copy, this way it will provide a better understanding of the points to be included in the headline and helps you write different variations.

· Use the headline formula to write your headline.

(Read my article on “How to Grab Reader’s Attention with Proven Formulas.” to know how the headline formula works and enable yourself to write 10–15 variations.)

· The Human touch is very essential; after all, you are writing the copy to be read by another human. This is also the ‘hook’ for your headline adds some personal touch, something that fascinates the reader’s interest.

· Clickbait Headlines are meant to exaggeratingly entice human emotions to be it positive or negative. Make high claims and back up with a good copy.

· We as Human beings have an eagerness to fill ourselves with information. The lack of information creates a gap that makes us feel deprived include the ‘fear of missing out’ of information in your headline.

· Number and list create mental trust. Readers are more inclined towards digits than alphabets as proven by hundreds of researchers done over the years. Numbers and lists help in eliminating the ‘Paradox of choice’. It is like a guided tour for the mind where there is no heavy lifting, our brain hates heavy lifting.

A good Clickbait Headline should be the actual source of pleasure ‘release of dopamine’ than the copy itself. It is the anticipation of pleasure with getting your headline more clicks.

Share your thoughts with me below in the comments or email prosenjeetdeb@gmail.com.

Copywriter | Social Media Strategist | Business Development | Consultant | Community Evangelist | …………………………. LinkdeIn -linkedin.com/in/prosenjeetdeb