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The Cold, Hard Truth About Writing Headlines That Grab Your Prospects’ Attention

social media prospecting

My daughter’s 7th grade Social Studies teacher started off a recent curriculum night by saying…

“On the first day of school, I told your kids… in this class we’re going to cover blood, guts, murder, and betrayal.”

My ears perked up immediately!

The second thing she said was…

“I’m here to make your kids successful.”

Now she had my full attention.

And the attention of ALL the other parents.

My hat goes off to her for doing this. She knows her “market,” and how to get their attention.

This is exactly what your Headline needs to do. It doesn’t need to sell or explain anything.

It's an advertisement for your advertisement

3.supplemental_800x800_1We pick and choose what we read or watch based on the headlines we see.

We skim through our inbox, Facebook News Feed, news stories, and “look” for whatever grabs our attention the most.

That means your headline has 2 goals:

  1. Grab your prospects' attention and stop them dead in their tracks.
  2. Create enough interest to get them to keep reading or watching your ad, Facebook Live, sales letter, or video.

That’s it.

Now think about it…

Your headline is your only opportunity to seize your prospect’s attention.

And if you don’t, it doesn’t matter what the rest of the ad or sales letter says.

Because it simply will NOT be read.

And your social media prospecting efforts will go down the proverbial drain.

You MUST create curiosity, excitement, anticipation, and a desire for more.

The headline is the most-read part of ANY ad, live, sales letter, blog post, or video!

Which is why even a simple change in your headline can easily turn a losing ad or a sales letter into an instant money-maker.

Ok, now let’s dig right in and see how we can create winning headlines that get the job done.

Now there are many different headline formulas, but ultimately, it’s the ones that speak directly to your prospect and arouse the most curiosity that end up winning.

Why is curiosity so powerful?

Well think about the last few videos you got sucked into watching on Facebook.

I’m willing to bet BIG BUCKS most of them created so much curiosity you just “HAD TO” watch.

This is what you want your headline to do—to flip a switch inside your prospect’s brain so they go…

“I HAVE TO see what this is all about!”

The other day I got a direct mail promo in my mailbox and the headline in big bold font read…

“DUMP These 10 Mining Company Stocks NOW!”

3.supplemental_800x800_2Now if you have absolutely no interest in stocks, especially mining stocks or any kind of precious metals, this will be of no interest to you whatsoever.

But what if you had your money in these types of companies?

Would that headline grab your attention?

You bet it would. It wouldn’t just grab it… it would literally stop you dead in your tracks, make you drop what you’re doing right now, and create an immediate sense of urgency to find out what these 10 stocks are.


Because your money is on the line.

And the fear of loss, possibly the world’s most powerful motivator, would be in full swing.

That’s exactly what a great headline is supposed to do to build a successful social media prospecting campaign.

The reason I got this letter is because I subscribe to a newsletter that deals with these types of stocks, so they knew there’s a good chance this headline would resonate with me.

So here's step number one…

Before writing your headline, you have to really know your market!

You must know what are their…

  • Goals, dreams, desires and hopes?
  • Fears, pains, worries and frustrations?

What keeps them tossing and turning at night?

This alone will make you better at writing headlines than most of your competition.

Knowing these things about your market is like possessing the “key” to their minds.

The more you understand their problems and desires, the more you can relate to them.

Let’s look at some headline formulas and examples…

1. Benefit-Driven Headline

This is where you basically state the benefit in your headline. And if this benefit resonates with your audience, if it’s something they really, truly want, they’ll be all over it.

Here are some examples:

How to Win Friends and Influence People

  • How to ______ and _______

You’re About to Discover How to Get Cheap and Targeted Traffic That Converts into Sales and Profits

  • You’re About to Discover How to __________ and __________

Discover How to Build a Huge List of Laser-Targeted Prospects on a Shoestring Budget

  • Discover How To __________

2. News Headline

3.supplemental_800x800_4We’re conditioned to pay attention to “Breaking News” or when we see something “New.”

  • Breakthrough
  • New
  • Just Released
  • Revealed
  • Announcing

When you use such words they make your headline sound newsworthy.

This is a great way to capture your prospect’s attention when coupled with a major benefit of your offer.

Here are some examples:

Announcing a Brand New Tracking Software GUARANTEED to Minimize Waste and Squeeze the Most Profits out of Your Traffic

  • Announcing a Brand New __________ GUARANTEED to __________

Just Released… 7 Powerful Conversion Tactics Used By the Most Successful Internet Marketers and Super-Affiliates

  • Just Released… # ___________

New Breakthrough Technology Can Now Turn Back the Clock and Make You Look 20 Years Younger

(I totally made this up just as an example)

  • New Breakthrough ___________ Can Now ___________

3. Question Headline

This headline formula is very effective.

Here’s why…

When you see a question, what does your brain automatically do?

That’s right, it starts answering.

Especially, when it’s aimed at a subject that’s of interest to you, or a pressing problem/pain you might be experiencing right now.

Here are some examples:

Do You Make These Mistakes in English?

(This is a classic headline, which can be adapted to just about any market or product)

  • Do You Make These __________ Mistakes?


  • Do You Make These Mistakes In _________?

What’s The Best Way to Make Money Online Today?

  • What’s The Best Way To _________?

Who Else Wants To Discover Weight Loss Secrets of The World’s Top Super Models?

  • Who Else Wants To __________?


  • Who Else Wants To Discover ________ Secrets of the World’s Top/Best ________?

4. Frustration/Pain/Problem Headline

Remember, people are much more motivated by the fear of loss, than by the promise of gain. We move away from pain a lot faster than we move toward pleasure.

That’s why this type of headline is especially effective. It taps into our primal desire to avoid fear, pain, and threat.

Here are some examples:

Stop Panic Attacks Today… And Discover A Simple Technique That Gets Rid Of Anxiety For Good

  • Stop ________ and Discover a Simple ________

No More Calorie Counting… Now You Can Eat Your Favorite Foods and Still Lose Weight

  • No More _________…. Now You Can _________

Here’s How to End Your Lead Generation Problems for Good… And Use This Surprising Simple Strategy to Explode Your List FAST

  • Here’s How To End Your __________ Problems For Good… And Use This Surprisingly Simple ________ to _________ FAST

5. Specific Number Headline

3.supplemental_800x800_3When it come to social media prospecting, using specifics in your sales copy, especially in your headline, makes it much more difficult for your prospects not to continue reading your sales letter or watching your video.

Specifics make it more believable and concrete in their minds.

Take a look at these examples:

3 Ways You Can Quickly Drive Laser-Targeted Traffic to Your Website

  • 3 Ways You Can Quickly ________

5 Little-Known Ways to Explode Your Email List

  • 5 Little-Known Ways to ________

7 Surprisingly Simple Ways To Make More Money Without Spending A Penny More On Advertising

  • 7 Surprisingly Simple Ways to ________ Without ________

So, now you have 5 powerful ways to create attention grabbing headlines very quickly.

Here are 25 proven power words/phrases to use in your headlines:

  1. Announcing
  2. Secrets
  3. Amazing
  4. New
  5. Now
  6. Breakthrough
  7. The Truth About
  8. Love
  9. Here
  10. Finally
  11. Discover
  12. Free
  13. Yes
  14. Hate
  15. Protect
  16. This
  17. You/Your
  18. At Last
  19. Only
  20. How To
  21. Simple
  22. Proven
  23. Little-Known
  24. Surprising
  25. Unique

Let’s wrap up with a few more things to keep in mind as you’re creating your headlines.

  1. Make sure you focus on your prospect and not on your product, by using words You and Your in your headline.
  2. Think about the BIG benefit your prospect is going to get.
  3. Be as specific as you possibly can.
  4. Make it believable.
  5. Address your prospect’s most pressing problem, fear, or pain.

And finally, when you’re done creating a headline always ask yourself:

Does this headline answer my prospect’s biggest question?

3.supplemental_800x800_5What’s in it for ME?

Now, go and create some winning and attention grabbing headlines for yourself!

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Vitaly Grinblat
Chief Copywriter & Director of Monetization
Elite Marketing Pro


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Vitaly Grinblat