Monday, February 20, 2012

7 Tips to Write Twitter Headlines to Give Online Press Releases a Boost

I'm always looking for new tricks to add to our PR bag, and I found these tips from PRWeb on how to write Twitter headlines to boost search results for online press releases.

They were looking over the results of the PR Grant awards last week and had an epiphany: Many Tweeters "scrape" headlines automatically to create tweets.

WOW! From this revelation, they learned how to craft a news release headline for Twitter in 120 characters or less to leave room for the shortened URL link to the article.

Check out these examples of headlines on Twitter that caused PRWeb to take a second look:

1. Play duck…duck…@DACRONBrand this Tues. 10/18 in Union Square NYC.
Okay, we’re in. Dacron piqued our interest into their contest with this clever play on a saying everybody remembers from childhood.

TAKEAWAY – Tap into phrases, words and memes that inhabit our collective memory for instant connection.

2. Is it the end of the hotel? The unhotel @onefinestay announces 150 homes across London

Good question. The answer intrigues us. Unhotel? We’ll take a look at this release just to find out how London homes trump traditional hotels. And for the benefit of our friends who travel frequently to that lovely city, we’ll retweet the press release.

TAKEAWAY – Ask a provocative question and you’ll press a nerve. Headlines with questions are often irresistible – just make sure your answer is just as compelling.

3. Transparency. Health care. Learn how a rural hospital mixes oil & water
This juxtaposition of elements is perfectly framed with a visual metaphor. We can’t resist wanting to know more.

TAKEAWAY – Use compelling conceits to help us understand the gist of your story.

4. Sandi Krakowski Ignites Moral & Ethical Business Debate
Where there’s smoke there must be fire. We love debates.

TAKEAWAY – One of the keys to a successful headline is the ability to compel. Use gripping, emotional language to draw us in.

5. Survey: Moms’ #1 Back-To-School Worry is Drinking & Drugs
We’ve been brought up on “Survey Says!” Just the mention motivates us to read on.

TAKEAWAY – Surveys and polls are effective ways to communicate the news-worthiness of your topic.

6. New online service SaveOnBrew.com serves up “Beer On The Cheap” via 50,000+ retailers across the US.
Ah, now you’re talking. Who wouldn’t want to find out where to save money?

TAKEAWAY – Appeal to everyone’s innate desire to have more for less. Hint – it doesn’t always have to be about money. Does your product or service solve problems better than your competitors’? Give readers the feeling of being on the inside track.

7. The #GrainsofChange tour is asking Americans which oatmeal they prefer, @Better_Oats or the incumbent
Everyone loves to share their opinion. We want to be part of the crowd so we’ll keep reading for details.

TAKEAWAY – Ask your audience for their opinions, advice and suggestions and you’ll automatically create a higher level of engagement.
The limitation of 140 characters doesn’t have to be daunting. It can be a stepping stone to reboot your creativity.

One thing to remember, while Tweets can be 140 characters, online press release headlines should typically run less than 70. So create a killer headline that’s short and sweet and then add a little frosting on it – 70 characters’ worth – when you release it on Twitter.

Remember hash tags & even the tiniest URLs take up characters.

Suzi
Garden Media Group

1 comment:

Robert Bornstein said...

Very interesting indeed! Thank you.