Is the copywriter an endangered species?
Do people still value a well-crafted headline that stops you in your tracks, grabs your attention and pulls you into the rest of the story?
Is it possible these days to get someone to read past the third sentence of anything?
I hope so, because this is the fourth sentence.
Originally, this post was going to be titled, “At a loss for words?” The premise was simple. If you were stuck with any creative challenge that needed some big idea thinking backed by some well-crafted, on target messaging, I had a very strong recommendation for you. Me.
But then I ran across an article on HubSpot about the value of keywords, particularly when it comes to headline writing. http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/common-keyword-data?utm_campaign=blog-rss-emails&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=19663780
I read through the article and it reminded me of John Caples and his tested, proven headline formulas that he published in his book, Tested Advertising Methods back in 1932. Back then, Mr. Caples came up with 35 rules to follow for headline writers. Those rules still work today – but anyone who strictly goes by the rules is doomed to mediocrity.
So now we get this modern day list featuring the most common keywords found in the top shared articles. It’s even broken down by where the keywords are appearing in different social media. What works for twitter, may not be right for Facebook or Pinterest or LinkedIn.
Not really. Nor is it really all that surprising to read that people sharing articles on, let’s say, Content Marketing react strongly to words like ‘Content’ or, ‘Marketing’. For science topics, we’re told to use words such as brain, smart, and future.
No wonder the role of the copywriter is being so devalued. When lists like these come out, it’s so easy to stoop to using keywords in your headline just so that the search engines can find you and your odds of being shared can increase exponentially.
So is it selling out when you include keywords like ‘keywords’ in your headline?
Yes, it is. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. After all, you are trying to get people to read what you’ve written. But the real key to using keywords is still creativity. It’s not if you use them, it’s how you use them.
And if you’re still reading this, congratulations. You made it past the fourth sentence.
If you’re at a loss for words for any of your advertising or marketing challenges, I’m here to help. To see some of my words in action, visit www.bloodlinescreative.com or wander amongst a few of my other blog posts and thanks in advance for reading.