What makes you click?

A click beetle

What makes you click? Image of a click beetle: John Tann http://www.flickr.com/photos/31031835@N08/

According to researchers at BI Norwegian Business School there’s a secret to increasing the effectiveness of your ad headlines.

The study conducted a number of experiments using various headlines on sites such Twitter and Finn.no. The click rate of each of the headlines was analysed to discover which links were clicked the most.

The study showed that headlines worded as questions achieved increases in click through rates of 150 percent. When the question was self-referential – as is the question in the headline for this post – clicks went up by 170 percent. That’s a lot of extra traffic for a small change.

The same experiments were also conducted on ads for products such as a smartphone, a TV and a sofa. They yielded the same results.

What does this mean for marketers?

Clearly throwing in a question, especially one that is self-referential for the reader, is a smart move. But according to Neuromarketing, too much of a good thing isn’t a good thing.

Don’t overdo the technique. Use it in combination with other effective headline writing techniques, such as those offered for free at Copyblogger.

If you give this technique a try I’d love to hear your results in a comment below.