How To Create Effective Marketing Headlines

It doesn’t matter if your marketing brochures have the best, most effective copy. It doesn’t matter if your business brochures have been designed by a world-renowned artist. What matters most is the words you use in your headlines. Headlines are what hook potential customers and draw them in to read the rest of your copy.

I’ve read that headlines do 90 percent of the work when it comes to sales copy. I believe that’s true. People skim before they read, and headlines are their guiding posts for what to slow down to read more about. Read on for tips on how to create headlines that are sure to get people’s attention.

Tout your benefits. Your headlines should be benefit statements. Tell the potential customer what she will get from using your product or service. Your headline shouldn’t be too long, but it’s okay to make it a phrase that will clearly explain what benefit the reader will gain from your product. If you’re using brochure printing as a marketing method, try not to make your headline longer than two lines for space and brevity.

People have a fear of losing. People in general have a much higher fear of losing something they already have than gaining something they don’t presently have. I’ve read an analogy that clearly shows this:

Imagine your friend calls you up at 2 am and says, “Hey I know how we can both make an extra $500 today! Get up!” Your friend is pretty likely to not be your friend for much longer right now. But, what if your friend calls you at 2 am and says “Someone is stealing the hubcaps off your car!” You’ll probably get up and chase off the thief. All for the sake of losing $300 worth of hubcaps, even though it’s less than what the first scenario had you gaining. It’s human nature – we don’t want to lose something we already have. It’s tangible. What we don’t have we can’t miss because we don’t have it.

Use this principle in your headline by saying something like “Avoid This Mistake that Cost Joe Schmoe $5000.” This works well in business brochures—it catches people’s attention and makes them want to read more.

Use words that have proven to be attention grabbers. For instance, “how to” do anything works extremely well. This phrase appeals to people because people want to know how to do things, how to make things happen. Certain words and phrases are naturally connecting and can be used in almost any headline. Some examples include: How To, How, Why, Who Else, Which of These, Here’s.

Look for ways to incorporate these words into the headlines of your marketing brochures. For example, you could simply say “Grow a Rose Garden.” But if you put “How to” in front of it: “How to Grow a Rose Garden” then all of a sudden it seems more inviting and more authoritative because it’s implied that the reader doesn’t know how to do it and the text that follows your headline will teach him how.

Use “you.” Talk directly to the reader. People are mostly concerned about themselves and they’re only reading your brochure to see what you can do for them.
Use these tactics in your brochure printing, Web sites and any other printed materials and you’ll hook potential customers who will read more about you and your product. More reading equals more sales!

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