Two identical events are offered under different titles:
- What to Expect When You’re Expectorating
- The Science of Phlegm
One sounds interesting, and the other would bring on torpor quicker than a Thanksgiving turkey.
We often use event titles out of habit, e.g., “Monthly Parenting Class,” forgetting the importance descriptive, interesting titles play in generating interest. We frequently repeat a course title when we could craft a more compelling heading that might share what the participant can expect to learn. We sometimes fall back on our own organizational-speak that is unrecognizable to a potential registrant, such as “Ideations on Cognitive Dissociations as Related to Post-Adolescence,” which would sound better if it were “Five Ways to Get a Teenager to Put Down the Xbox and Pay Attention.”
If you provide a specific program aimed at a niche audience or one that requires mandatory participation, your efforts at crafting more compelling titles may not be necessary. However, a little effort crafting a strong title can go a long way, if you need to fill as many seats as possible.
Think like a copywriter creating a marketing brochure, or a writer seeking eyeballs for a blog. Use active verbs, strong adjectives, a clever turn of phrase, a challenge, an offer, a question – anything relevant to the event that plants that hook or makes a pitch for their attendance. Start with basic tips in headline writing.
- If you administer events that repeat, AB test two titles for the same event to determine which works better
- Don’t use title words that end in “gogue,” e.g. “Pedagogue”
- Don’t use words that begin with “Peda,” e.g., “Pedagogue”
- Don’t deploy trendy but worthless words or phrases such as “ideate,” “incent,” or “trending”
- Don’t write a headline that can’t fit on one line
- When appropriate, quantify, e.g. “50 Ways to Weave Your Cover”
Just as it is common to write a nice blog that isn’t read much due to a nondescript headline, your event can suffer without an optimal title. Don’t over-embellish, but do convey the value your programs or events offer.