Your title will make or break you as a writer.
If you’ve crafted killer content, but a ho-hum title, few people will read your brilliant words. That’s why at the Write Brilliant Academy, we’re committed to help you create titles that make people want to click, buy, and read what your words.
Here’s a Tantalizing Title Checklist to help your words change the world:
1. Hit your audience’s felt need.
You have a milli-second to convince someone to click your post or reach for you book. Make sure your title creates a sense of drop-everything-now-and-read-this. Create a concrete promise that will make your readers’ lives better.
2. Make sure it’s all about the audience.
Since you’re drawing on your ideas, your research, your discoveries, it’s far too easy to make your title about you. “Five Lessons I Learned” or “My Discovery of…” Before you finalize your title, consider removing every “me,” “my,” and “I.” Serve your audience. Lean toward words like “you” and “your.” Do you want to read My Best Life Now or discover how to live Your Best Life Now? Do you want to read My Story of Illness or How You Can Heal Your Body and Mind Forever?
3. Make every word count.
When you’re publishing online, search engine optimization tends to favor shorter titles with the first words weighted. If you have a 15-word title, you’ll lose your audience’s attention fast. On a book cover, a wordy title can cause people to resist buying the project altogether. (Of course, exceptions exist).
4. Skip the gerunds.
A gerund is derived from a verb that functions as a noun and often ends in –ing. These tend to leave to passive calls to action. I penned the book, Fight Back With Joy. I could have titled the book Fighting Back With Joy, but that’s more of a suggestion rather than a sharp call to action. Review your title and subtitle for any gerunds and rework to more specific calls to action.
5. Google your title.
Is your book title already taken? Does your blog title touch on a popular topic? By reviewing others’ titles which are similar (or the same) as yours, you can sharpen your language and approach.
6. Hold your title as a placeholder.
Titles shift and change, grow and morph. I wrote a book called The Sacred Echo which was originally titled The Scandalous Question and Fight Back With Joy was once titled The Joy Experiment. When crafting a book title, hold your words with an open hand. The title may need shift as your content or marketing plan develops. For your online content, revisit underperforming blogs and update with punchier titles to drive more traffic.
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"Jonathan and Margaret are two of the best writing coaches in America, and I've learned much from them over the years. Their Write Brilliant program will help you grow deep roots and a wide reach. Do not wait to sign-up!"
– Gabe Lyons
Bestselling author of Good Faith and founder of Q
"I highly recommend Jonathan and Margaret's program for writers of any level!"
– Jennie Allen,
bestselling author of Nothing to Prove and founder of IF:Gathering
"The firehose of information I absorbed through Write Brilliant transformed the way I write. Jonathan and Margaret bring a combined breadth of knowledge and a straight-shooting style that helped me clarify my target audience, expand my platform, and get practical about what it takes to dedicate myself to my craft. I learned more in this one course than in all past conferences, books, blogs, and videos I’ve engaged. Write Brilliant is a one-stop-shop for taking your writing to the next level."
– September Vaudrey,
author of Colors of Goodbye
"In all my years of leading organizations, I've encountered dozens of how-to programs, but none of them has been more effective then this one. I should know. The Write Brilliant strategy gave me the boost of confidence I needed to create two books on leadership. Whether you want to author a book or just create a blog, make sure you don't miss this fantastic course."
– Brad Lomenick,
author of H3 Leadership and former director of Catalyst
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