Freddie Starr Ate My Hamster!

If you’re of a similar age to us you’ll remember this Sun headline from 1986.

That’s because headlines sell.  They grab readers’ attention.   So if tabloid sub-editors, advertising copywriters and even politicians get that, why are the headlines/titles on professional service firms’ e-bulletin, newsletters, fliers, presentations and pitch documents so dull?!!

They don’t engage the audience so emails remain unopened, e-bulletins and newsletters are deleted and your audience remains fairly passive during your presentations and seminars while your pitches are quickly forgotten.

So what can you do to genuinely engage your target audience with your various marketing communications whilst still remaining professional? 

Here are my top 5 tips:

Use attention grabbing emails on the subject line of emails – they are more likely to be opened

Ask a question in your headlines and subject lines, for example “How will you achieve your growth targets in such turbulent times?”

Always write for the reader – use ‘you’ and ‘your’ not ‘we’ and ‘our’

Be controversial or at least counter-intuitive!  When I am delivering networking training my title slide says ‘How to network and NOT work the room’ or ‘How to build relationships and avoid the canapes’ … it’s not what people expect so the audience want to know why you’re disagreeing with what they’ve always been told.

Tell people how they will benefit from reading/ listening to what you’re going to say.  And let me let you into a secret, that’s the fact you’re going to tell them how you’ll save them time money or hassle … of, preferably, a mix of all 3!

If you’d like to have a chat about how you can make your headlines more engaging, just drop us a line and we can find a convenient time to talk.

Published by sizetenandahalfboots

Douglas is a director of Size 10½ Boots, a specialist business development agency that works solely with the professional services, helping firms grow by winning more new clients and more work from the clients they already have. Although every project is different our work generally falls into one of three camps - strategic marketing support, BD training and 1on1 coaching and independent client research.

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