From the Editor’s desk: How to write an SEO-catchy headline
Published on March 10th, 2011 by Alberto Carta-Guerrero
For press releases, the key to successfully getting your message across to your audience starts with a captivating headline. But, did you know that headlines must also be SEO-catchy as well?
To exemplify this thought, let’s use this made-up headline for a press release that is intended to promote a line of chocolates: “Chocolate Bunnies Are Fun.” Though true to many, “Chocolate Bunnies Are Fun” is a bit boring compared to perhaps something a bit more descriptive and engaging, such as: ”IHeartChocolate Says, Give the Gift of Chocolate Bunnies on Easter.” But, what makes the latter better than the first version? A few things:
- Encourages an action
- Uses a holiday as a tie-in
- Company is mentioned
Those elements make the headline reader-friendly. So how do you make it catchy to search engines as well? For SEO purposes, the headline should include:
- Company name (particularly for well-known companies and/or their brands)
- SEO keywords or phrases that are repeated in the body of the press release as anchor text that hyperlink to pages within the website (i.e.: “IHeartChocolate,” “chocolate” and/or “Easter gift” appear in the body and hyperlink to iheartchocolate.org, iheartchocolate.org/chocolate, and iheartchocolate.org/chocolate, respectively)
Other things to consider when writing SEO-catchy headlines:
- Find one target keyword phrase that is most relevant to your release and your target audience and put it in the first 60-70 characters of your headline and the first 150 characters of the body. (Use Google AdWords to determine which keywords are the most popular ones that describe your product.)
- Use this phrase as the first hyperlink; secondary phrases in subsequent hyperlinks.
These tactics are specifically for headlines. Read more to discover other ways that SEO and press releases work together to maximize effective communication:
- How to choose target keywords in your press releases in 4 easy steps
- How to boost an SEO campaign using press releases
How do you use SEO to enhance press release headlines?