What’s the Secret to Truly Great Press Release Headlines?

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More and more information is released onto the web every single day. In this oversaturated world, a press release is a powerful tool to convey important information and capture the attention of your target audience.

However, amidst the sea of information bombarding journalists and readers alike, the success of your press release often hinges on its first impression – the headline.

Crafting a truly great press release headline is an art that requires a strategic blend of creativity, clarity, and relevance.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the secrets to creating press release headlines that grab attention, drive engagement, and ensure your message doesn’t get lost in the digital noise.

The Importance of a Compelling Headline

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Before delving into the secrets of crafting great press release headlines, let’s understand why they are so crucial. In the digital age, where information is consumed rapidly, attention spans are fleeting.

A well-crafted headline serves as the gateway to your press release, determining whether your audience will delve deeper into the content or scroll past it.

First Impressions Matter

First impressions are crucial regardless of whether it’s on a date or with a headline. They are the big thing that drives the engine forward.

A compelling headline is your first opportunity to make a positive impression. It should intrigue, excite, or inform, compelling the reader to learn more about your news.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

An effective press release headline not only captures human attention but also aligns with search engine algorithms.

Crafting SEO-friendly press release headlines involves strategic keyword selection and placement to align with search engine algorithms. By identifying relevant and high-impact keywords related to the content of the press release, communicators can optimize headlines for search queries.

This increases the likelihood of the release appearing in relevant search results. Integrating these keywords naturally into the headline while maintaining clarity and capturing the essence of the news ensures that search engines recognize the relevance of the press release.

Furthermore, including location-based keywords, industry-specific terms, and trending phrases relevant to the news story enhances the discoverability of the press release. A well-optimized headline not only serves the purpose of engaging human readers but also ensures that search engines can effectively index and rank the content.

Journalist Engagement

Journalists and media professionals sift through numerous press releases daily. They probably see hundreds of them a day. The only way they are going to notice your press release over the myriad others is if you have written a headline that stands out somehow.

It will prompt the journalists to look at your press release further and to read through the rest of the content.


In the age of social media, shareability is a key factor in amplifying your message. A headline that resonates with your audience is more likely to be shared across various platforms, extending the reach of your news.

You’ve probably noticed this for yourself. When browsing through a random news site or a blog, you don’t stop at an article until you see something that captures your attention. Something that makes your brain go, yes, this is something interesting, and I want to find out more about it.

It also makes you think, I want to share this brilliant article with others.

Secrets to Crafting Truly Great Press Release Headlines

It’s not hard to write a good headline. But it does take a bit of time and practice. In fact, you should be spending half your time crafting the headline and the other half writing the press release itself.

Short and Sweet

A great headline is clear and concise, immediately conveying the essence of your news. Avoid jargon and unnecessary complexity. Aim for a headline that can be understood at a glance, ensuring that your audience quickly grasps the main message.

Remember that a lot of your audience isn’t going to be in your field, so they will be confused by any technical words you might use. It’s better to use simpler words so you can appeal to a broader audience.

Audience Research

Consider your target audience when crafting a headline. What matters to them? What are their pain points or interests?

Tailor your headline to resonate with your audience’s needs, making them more likely to engage with the content.

Answer the “So What” Question

Ask yourself the “So what?” question. Why should your audience care about your news? They have a hundred other things they could be potentially reading, so why your article?

Your headline should provide a compelling answer, emphasizing the relevance and impact of your announcement.

Incorporate Keywords Naturally

As part of an effective SEO strategy, incorporate relevant keywords into your headline. However, ensure that they are seamlessly integrated and do not compromise the clarity or appeal of the headline. Strike a balance between optimization and readability.

Don’t overstuff your headline or article with keywords. That’s bad practice, not only for your audience but also for Google.

Evoke an Emotional Connection

Humans are emotional beings, and headlines that evoke emotion are more likely to grab attention. Whether it’s excitement, curiosity, or empathy, infuse your headline with an emotional element that resonates with your audience.

You can also do this by using the art of storytelling, whether it be about your organization, employees, or founders. It’s a great way to engage with the audience because humans love stories about other humans. We are a story-telling species.

Create a Sense of Urgency

A well-crafted headline can create a sense of urgency, prompting readers to take immediate interest in your news. Whether it’s a limited-time offer, breaking news, or an exclusive announcement, convey the urgency in your headline.

Use Action Verbs

Action verbs inject vitality into your headline. They convey a sense of movement and encourage readers to engage with the content actively. Choose verbs that align with the energy and tone of your news.

Employ Numbers and Statistics

Numbers and statistics add a tangible and concrete element to your headline. Whether it’s showcasing achievements, milestones, or quantifiable benefits, incorporating numbers can enhance the credibility and impact of your press release.

Make sure that these numbers are real and not made up or fake. Your audience isn’t stupid and will figure out your attempts to dupe them very quickly.

Harness the Power of Questions

Pose a thought-provoking question in your headline to engage your audience’s curiosity. Questions can stimulate interest and invite readers to explore the answers within your press release.

Questions also make people stop and think for a second, instead of mindless scrolling through the website. It’s a useful way to make them stop at your press release.

Emphasize Uniqueness and Exclusivity

If your news has a unique angle or exclusive elements, highlight them in the headline. Communicate what sets your announcement apart and why it deserves special attention.

Test Different Versions

A/B testing can be a valuable strategy to determine the most effective headline. Experiment with different versions and analyze their performance to understand what resonates best with your audience.

Also, beta test different headlines with employees in your company or with friends. It’s important to know what others outside your organization would think about your headline and press release.

Align with Your Brand Voice

Your headline is an extension of your brand voice. Ensure consistency in tone, style, and messaging across all your communications. A cohesive brand voice builds familiarity and trust with your audience.

If you take a humorous tone in your other communications, then it’s okay to do so in your press release as well. But if you are usually somber in your tone, then emulate that in your press release as well.

Frontload Important Information

Place crucial information towards the beginning of your headline. Frontloading ensures that the most significant details are immediately visible, capturing attention even if readers only skim the headline.

Most people only remember the front and back of the headline, that is, the first couple of words and the last word or so. It’s important to put what you prioritize in these spaces so they can see what you want them to see.

Consider Length and Readability

While there is no one-size-fits-all rule for headline length, aim for balance. Ensure that your headline is long enough to convey essential information but short enough to maintain readability and impact.

Don’t make it longer than 10-14 words though. Then, it almost looks like a paragraph and is unappealing.

Stay Factual and Authentic

Avoid hyperbole and exaggeration in your headlines. While it’s essential to be compelling, maintaining factual accuracy and authenticity is paramount. Misleading headlines can damage your credibility and trustworthiness.

Write Press Release Headlines With the Audience in Mind

Always keep in mind that you are writing press release headlines for someone else. So don’t write what you would like to read, but what this target audience would prefer.

Need help with writing your press release headlines? eReleases is the best press release distribution service for small businesses. We do it all, from writing the release to releasing it to your target audience.

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