How to Write Powerful Headlines in Less Than 5 Minutes

Believe it or not, successful content marketing hinges on your ability to write powerful headlines.

Want to hear something shocking?

“Five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.” — David Ogilvy

Sure, a headline jam-packed with keywords might get Google’s attention.

But, above all, you want your ideal audience to click that link, and read all your juicy content that will engage, teach, and inspire them. You’re itching to build those relationships.

Let’s face it.

It doesn’t matter how good your content is.

If you don’t have a catchy and clickable headline, your content is essentially worthless.


In short, your content marketing will likely fail if you’re not writing powerful headlines.

To show you what I mean, consider this:

Which headline will get more clicks and shares?

(a) Useful Cooking Advice


(b) Discover How to Improve Your Cooking Skills in 5 Days

Full points if you chose option ‘B’.

So if you want to improve your headlines today and finally get the traffic your content deserves, read on.

I’m going to show you how you can easily write powerful headlines – using proven headline formulas that are catchy AND clickable – in less time than it’ll take to finish your coffee.

Let’s get started.


‘How to’ headlines

This is one of the easiest and most popular headline formulas.

And the reason is simple: because it works.

In fact, the ‘How to’ headline has been working well with audiences in every industry since the dawn of marketing.

It’s effective because it focuses on the benefits to the reader. And people will always love information that shows them how to do something.

What’s more, you can add a promise at the end to make this type of headline even more punchy.


FORMULA: How to + [action] + [keyword] + [promise]

For example:

  • How to Get Rid of Pimples Overnight  
  • How to Set Up Your Website Without Blowing the Budget
  • How to Learn French in Less Than 2 Weeks


‘Here’s a quick way’ headlines

People are very interested in achievement. Not only that, but they love to solve their problems in quick and easy ways.

And everyone has a nagging problem they want to fix.

So why not tap into this?

Using this headline formula will draw on these desires and easily capture the attention of your ideal audience.

Just make sure you can deliver on your promise!

Bonus tip: add ‘easy’ into the formula to make it even more effective.


FORMULA: Here’s a quick way to + [solve a common problem]

For example:

  • Here’s a Quick Way to Get Over the Winter Blues
  • Here’s a Quick Way to Write Email Campaigns
  • Here’s a Quick and Easy Way to Cut Pineapple


‘Number’ headlines

Numbers have been proven time and again to be effective when writing powerful headlines.

Probably because people are naturally attracted to lists and numbers.

And a number headline also suggests to a prospective reader that the content format will be simple to absorb.

For the best results, try to use an odd number, and make sure you structure the headline with the number at the beginning.

Pro tip: remember that using the digit form will almost always outperform words:
e.g. “3 Ways to” versus “Three Ways to”


FORMULA: [number] + [adjective] + [verb] + [keyword]

For example:

  • 7 Simple Ways to Manage Difficult Staff
  • 9 Easy Hacks to Create Fresh Content for Your Website
  • 5 Great Reasons You Should Get a Flu Shot


‘Ask a question’ headlines

What happens in your brain when you see a question mark?

Yep, you guessed it.

We automatically try to answer the question in our minds. And if we don’t know the answer, then our instinctive reaction will be to find out.

Naturally, this’ll mean clicking on your headline.

Using question headlines, especially ones that tap into common problems, is the perfect way to grab the attention of your ideal audience.

You’ve sparked their curiosity, and they’ll turn to you for the answers.


FORMULA: [Are/Have/Do] you + [common problem / undesirable outcome]

For example: 

  • Do You Ever Make These Mistakes When Buying Jeans?
  • Have You Ever Wondered How to Get Your Business on Page 1 of Google?
  • Are You Worried About the Rising Cost of Living?


Now it’s your turn.

With these tips, you’ll be able to write powerful headlines in a snap. And your click-through rates will soar.

Use them for anything: your content, email subject lines, sub-heads, titles, search engine meta data, sales pages, and even social media posts.

Of course, learning these formulas are pointless unless you start trying them out for yourself.

So choose one and get writing.


Hi, I’m Lea (like tea) Farrow

I’m a marketing strategist and SEO copywriter based in beautiful Tasmania, Australia.

Over the years, I’ve focused on all things written. But after recognising that savvy copywriting and smart SEO are only two pieces of a larger marketing puzzle, I changed gears.

I now work with coaches and consultants to develop marketing strategies that save them time and bring in more of their ideal clients – reliably and easily.

Even better, we can do this without paid ads, complex tech, or a big team.

Sound good?

Get in touch to find out how.

You may also be interested to read:

Is your business strategy sabotaging your marketing?

Is your business strategy sabotaging your marketing?

As a business owner, chances are you often run short on time. There never seems to be enough hours in a day, or days in a week to get on top of your ever-growing “to do” list. And when you’re wearing all the hats in your business, it’s not always clear where your time...

The LinkedIn dilemma every coach faces (and how to fix it)

The LinkedIn dilemma every coach faces (and how to fix it)

When did you last post on LinkedIn? Last week?Last month?Or even longer? If you’re like 99% of the coaches and consultants I talk to and work with, you’re not posting enough content. And the reason is always the same: They don’t know what to write about, so they end...

Your marketing is worthless without this one detail

Your marketing is worthless without this one detail

Getting a grip on your marketing can be tough when you’re surrounded by so much marketing jargon. A cryptic foreign language you can’t quite crack… SEOFunnelsBrandingProspectsA/B testingOptimisationCall to actionBrand identityDigital strategyConversion rateAuthority...

Want more insights like this?

Why not grab a front-row seat in my popular mailing list?

You’ll get my marketing insights delivered straight to your inbox every fortnight.

They’re full of marketing goodness, tips, and stories for coaches, consultants, and service business owners.

 PS. Whenever you’re ready, here’s how I can help you:

If you’re confused about what content to post, when, and where, learn how to easily cut through the noise and attract your best clients with my FREE content creation guide

If you’ve got a LinkedIn profile that isn’t bringing in leads, it’s definitely due for a spruce-up. Skip the guesswork and use my FREE LinkedIn profile guide

And if you’re ready to crank your marketing up a gear with a strategy that attracts your ideal clients without burning money on ads or relying on erratic referrals but don’t know where to start, your first step is to book a Marketing Clarity Session