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3 Press Release Headline Examples That Put People to Sleep

Look, man, if writing press release headlines was easy, everyone would do it. It takes effort to get a reader’s attention, pique their curiosity and get them to click your headline to read your press release.

Rather than tell you how to write a press release headline, in this post I want to tell you how not to. I’ve made up these examples (didn’t want to call any companies out and embarrass them by pointing out their lousy headlines) to fit some of the bigger categories of bad headlines I’ve seen.

Want more tips on how to write an effective press release? Check out the free “PR Starter Kit” today!

1. The “Why Should I Give a Darn” Headline

If you read many blog posts about marketing, you’ve come across the phrase, “What’s in it for me?” Essentially, the adage goes: your customers want to know how doing something (clicking, reading, buying) will benefit them in some way.

The same goes for your press release headline. You’ve got to capture people’s attention with it and show them that there’s a reason to click it to read more.

What NOT to Write:

Smith Incorporated Receives $1 Billion in First Round Funding

What’s Wrong with It:

It’s great that this made-up company secured funding, but what does the average person care? What will the company do with the money that will help customers?

A Better Way to Write It:

$1 Billion Funding Round Will Help Smith Incorporated Fund More Small Businesses

2. The Loooong, Drawn-Out Headline

Invite your audience on a journey with your brand! Read our free white paper to create your brand journalism program today!

I’ve seen a lot of brands try to fit their entire news into the headline! People. That’s what the actual press release is for.

What NOT to Write:

Gurken Industries Launches New Product Line of Baby Diapers Designed with Patent-Pending Eco-Friendly Drying Material

What’s Wrong with It:

Don’t give too much away with the headline, or people won’t have a reason to read the actual press release. Also, keep in mind that Google only displays the first 50-60 characters of your headline, so if it’s longer, it’ll get cut off.

A Better Way to Write It:

Gurken Industries Launches New Eco-Friendly Diaper Line

3. The Vague Headline

Press-Release-Confused

We want details! We want to know statistics, numbers and more information in your headline so we actually click it to read more. But many businesses discount the importance of details.

What NOT to Write:

Flell Inc. Launches Industry Forum

What’s Wrong with It:

What industry? If I’ve never heard of Flell Inc., I’m not clicking on that headline. What’s the purpose of the forum? Again, why should I care?

A Better Way to Write It:

Flell Inc. Launches Acupuncture Practitioners’ Forum to Foster Communication

In each of the above examples, you can see how the suggested headline improved it. Read your headlines before publishing them and ask yourself:

  • Is there a benefit for the reader to click to read more?
  • Am I being specific and descriptive enough without making the headline too long?

A little forethought on drafting the best headline possible will pay off in clicks and reads.

Images: John Lambert PearsonCollegeDegrees360 (Creative Commons)

Tags : press release

About Susan Guillory

Susan Guillory is the president of Egg Marketing & Communications, a marketing firm specializing in content writing and social media management. She frequently blogs about small business and marketing on sites including Cision, Forbes, AllBusiness, Small Business Trends, The Marketing Eggspert Blog and Tweak Your Biz. Follow her on Twitter @eggmarketing.

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