One of the key roles of financial marketing services is to attract user attention to its content.
More attraction in search engines, for instance, means more clicks. This means more website visitors. More visitors, in turn, means more brand exposure, and therefore opportunities for conversions.
This all sounds great, but how to you write copy which gets people’s attention like this?
As a financial marketing agency ourselves, we we’re going to share a little secret with you.
The main, key ingredient to a financial marketing services’ strategy should be the headline. This might be your email subject line, an article/press release title, or an opening sentence.
This is the most crucial aspect of your content for getting readers’ attention. If the headline sis poor or mediocre, then you’re missing a huge opportunity in your financial marketing.
So, how do you write a good headline?
#1 Make use of Curiosity
Curiosity is a powerful dynamic in any kind of human interaction.
Think about dating, for instance. What leads you to meet your first date for a second time, or third or more? You’re keen to find out more about this attractive, fascinating person that you keep coming back!
A similar thing occurs in financial marketing services – when it’s done properly. Marketers now know that there are two types of curiosity in humans, and leveraging each one effectively is the key.
The first type is perceptual curiosity, which is the “superficial” level of curiosity. This is when you see something new or interesting, like a magic trick, and want to understand it.
The second type is epistemic curiosity, which holds a deep desire to learn something new. Fulfilling this desire is immensely pleasurable.
So, financial marketing services need to strike a delicate balance in their headlines to be effective. They need to arouse perceptual curiosity, without immediately fulfilling their audience’s epistemic curiosity.
You see this all the time on banner ads across the web. They say things like:
“When I tried this new moisturiser, I could not believe what happened to my skin. Nor will you…”
“When I transferred my pension without proper advice, I regretted what happened soon afterwards…”
Makes you want to find out more, doesn’t it!
#2 Employ the Power of Scarcity
Human beings are also programmed to value things which appear rare, or in low supply.
This scarcity principle is grounded in evolution, where our ancestors learned to gather and store things they needed which were likely to run out, or were hard to find elsewhere.
Financial marketing services can tap into this principle with clever use of headlines, suggesting scarcity:
“Offer ends soon!”
“Exclusive, limited offer”
“Hurry, online 3 days left!”
#3 Surprise People
Did you know that when you surprise someone, you get their undivided, full attention?
Again, it likely has strong roots in our evolution and human ancestry, where something which surprised you in the wild could often be dangerous. So your response needed to be focused to the new situation.
By using surprise in headlines, financial marketing services have the potential to either suddenly repel, intrigue, or stun people. This gives you the crucial power you need to move their eyes to the next sentence in your content, or lead them to click on more.
For instance, we saw one clever article headline on a mainstream newspaper, which said:
“Workplace pension changes leave you over £100,000 worse off”
£100,000! Shocking! I need to know how, and why…
#4 Offer Value
If you start a blog with the words “How…” or “How to…”, then you’re almost certainly onto a winner.
The reason is that it signals to your reader that you’re about to offer something valuable to them. The word “how” taps into our instinctive desire as humans to be directed.
Why do people want to be directed? Because being told what to do is easier, and less terrifying, than doing the hard, intimidating work of guessing, taking initiative, or stepping out of your comfort zone.
Resting on the guidance and help of someone more experienced is more comforting, and feels safer.
For instance, in financial marketing services you could apply this to headlines such as the following:
“How to make a solid financial plan for your small business”
“How to find a decent financial adviser”
“How to make your inheritance more tax-efficient”
#5 Make Use Of Numbers
Numbers have the potential to make headlines much more exciting an interesting.
Compare these two headlines, for instance:
“Avoid these mistakes if you want to transfer your pension”
“3 Crucial mistakes to avoid if you transfer your pension”
The first headline is good, but the second one focuses your attention more. The number makes it stick out more hold our attention, because the sentence is otherwise dominated by words.
Numbers also reassure readers, because they immediately give a sense of structure to the article. If there are 3 mistakes to avoid, for instance, then that implies that the article isn’t going to take long to read. That’s comforting. The former, headline, however, could signal a 400 word article, or a 4,000 word one!
#6 Pose A Question
You obviously need to be careful with this one in any industry, let alone financial marketing services.
It might attracts clicks, for instance, to ask “Does your newborn son have rabies?” in your headline, but it will not do your brand or reputation any favours.
So avoid potentially upsetting or offensive headlines. In addition, avoid anything that is too obvious, like “Should I get a pension?” (Obviously, yes).
Rather, questions in your headlines should compel people to evaluate how they currently behave, or think. Leading people to do this is a highly emotional form of activity.
And, as it is commonly known, people buy primarily based on emotions.
For instance, headlines that IFAs could consider using include:
“How vulnerable are you to a pension scam?”
“Are you missing a trick with this little-known IHT loophole?”
And so on.