For a change, we will start our topic with a small quiz! What’s the name of the first person who received the Pfizer vaccine?
The majority wouldn’t probably know, all you can recall is the fact that she is a 91-year-old grandmother from England.
But if we ask you about the name of the second person who was vaccinated, you will surely not hesitate and say William Shakespeare.
Why did you remember the second person’s name and not the first person?
You remembered the name because it was in all the headlines on social media, but this is not the reason, because you thought Shakespeare, the English playwright was still alive.
Pages and websites like 9Gag, Buzzfeed, BBC, CNN, and many other well-known pages received a huge engagement on their posts. Pages are used having many likes, but this time, the comments were overflowing, as well as shares. On the opposite side, the page CGTN didn’t get that much attention or comments as the other pages.
Why did the same information get a lot of attention on a page, and a simple engagement on another?
The answer is very simple, it’s the used headline and the way of presenting the information.
William Shakespeare’s Engaging Headline
CGTN wrote a basic headline: The second person to receive the vaccine is an 81-year-old man named William Shakespeare.
Meanwhile, other pages and websites wrote: William Shakespeare is the second person to receive the vaccine.
Not a big difference, but still we have two different meanings.
The New York Times went a little bit far and wrote: William Shakespeare has been vaccinated against the coronavirus. (Yes, you read that right.)
These kinds of headlines made people engage more, and comment even more saying that they didn’t know that Shakespeare was still alive, and some said they went to Google to double-check and found that the playwright passed away 400 years ago. The comments weren’t relevant to the real information, but people focused on the double meaning sentence.
What made people interact with the headline, it’s the fact that it gave people a reason to read the post. It also opened up the curiosity gap and appealed to people’s emotions. Emotions are not just love and anger, it can be being surprised, and that’s what people felt, they were surprised that Shakespeare was vaccinated.
It’s true the headline is quite misleading but succeeded in making the reader curious.
There’s a thin line between a misleading headline and a good headline that makes the reader curious. Copywriters and Content Writers should keep in mind that most people don’t read the whole post or article, they just read the headline. The headlines shouldn’t have information that may start rumors. For example, all pages and websites wrote that 6 people passed away because of the Pfizer vaccine. People only read the headline and started claiming that the vaccine kills.
The role of a headline is very important and huge. It can make a person skip your post and read the competition’s articles and ignore your hard work. But if it’s done well, it can push someone to click on your article and read it.
How To Write a Good Headline?
To write good headlines, think about adding:
- A sense of urgency
- Curiosity and Mystery
- Funny or strange idea
- Bold statement
The headlines can determine how many people will read your content, so you need to pay more attention to creating attention-grabbing headlines. They may be small content, but headlines sometimes take longer to write than the actual content.