The Power of Subtitles: How to Captivate and Hook your Reader?

How many times have you abandoned a blog or a page because of the huge blocks of text that fill the screen of your computer, tablet, or Smartphone? Surely, many, because the words piled up in dense and large pieces without any space between ideas, frighten visitors and leave the author badly stopped.

Badly stopped because it seems that you do not know, for example, that an article is written correctly – that is, with well-placed subtitles – makes the page more attractive. You need to understand, at first glance, the theme of the text and what will win with the reading of each paragraph.

According to a study conducted by Nielsen Norman Group, 79% of Internet users use scannability (the famous “dynamic reading”) to evaluate a page instead of reading its contents from start to finish. Only then, they decide if they are going to stay on the site to consume the content.

blog power of subtitles

The attraction is not the only advantage. Subtitles also make the job of the editor easier, as they help you organize ideas and develop them in the text. You will read more long texts that are divided into some of the topics of the mind rather than reading the text with the sentences connected with each other without pause.

Now that you know what the function and importance of subtitles are, would you like to learn how to use them in your favor? In this post, we will teach you how to write subtitles capable of capturing the reader’s attention from the first line to the last. Just keep reading on!

Write funny subtitles with care

In texts for the Internet, relaxed and funny subtitles are almost always a good choice; however, it is good to exaggerate, especially with word games. The result can be a cliché, and the least you want is to be repetitive or annoying.

For example, in a text about diseases, the subtitle “Take a look” may sound funny, but it does not say much about the paragraph itself. In fact, it could be about anything, such as the main methods of prevention or the most common ophthalmological problems.

To prevent that from happening, read each phrase carefully and ask yourself: what is the most important part of that paragraph? What is the central idea of the subject? The answer to these questions will help you find a good subtitle.

Avoid using complicated words

There is another common problem among people who choose to be more creative: complication. Let’s go back to the previous example. In a text about ailments, you can choose between keeping things simple with “The symptoms of hemorrhagic conjunctivitis” or saying, “The evils that the A25 virus can cause in humans”. What do you think will be better?

Although the second option sounds more informative, it is also the most confusing. Remember that, before anything else, subtitles serve to make your writing more clear. What people want is to find a solution quickly, not waste time deciphering what is written.

Create a standard and keep it

This is a golden rule for good web writing. All the subtitles in your text must have something in common, a kind of standard. The justification? The pieces with a similar nature make the reading more fluid. For example:

Content Marketing: what is it ?;
What are the advantages of Content Marketing ?;
See what the costs of that strategy are!
Apply Content Marketing to your business and grow.

Surely you realized that there is no clear logic in the construction of those phrases, and the list seems a mixture of ideas, questions, and prayers in imperative. What do you think if we replace all this with questions, for example?

What is Content Marketing?;
What are its advantages?
What are the costs of the strategy?
How can you apply it to your business?

Much better, right?

Another important detail: the subtitles must be coherent in length. After all, it does not look good if a text is full of short subtitles, and suddenly, one appears extremely long. If you need an ideal measure, try not to go over 5 or 6 words.

That advice on length, inclusive, is a good way to maintain the strength of the subtitles. Just analyze: “Finish your Marketing problems” is more impactful than “Marketing problems and how to avoid them in your company”. Do you agree?

Connect the subtitles to the title

Ok, the funny tone does not fit very well with your text. So, what do you think about making a connection between the title of the text and all the subtitles? Although it sounds simple, that attitude will guarantee that you will not leave the main topic aside and that the development of the writing will be coherent. Funny tones can make your readers more interested in listening to what the subtitles cover.

For example, if you are writing a blog post with the title “5 tips to increase your productivity at work”, the subtitles can be each of the tips that the reader needs to reach their goal. That is to say:

Sleep and eat correctly;
Avoid excess perfectionism;
Disconnect from social networks;
Use applications that help you;
Use business management software

An extra tip: it is not necessary to create a subtitle for the conclusion of your texts. When writing the famous “summary of ideas”, you can go straight to the point without worries. The same goes for CTA or Call to Action since it does not demand another division of content either. Do you want an example? Read the following paragraphs:

There is not much mystery to create good subtitles. If you try to avoid the obvious – cautiously, of course – the elaborate terms and constructions, in addition to following a standard and connecting everything to the central idea of the text, you will have done a good job. Hopefully, this article can help you in determining the right subtitles for your articles.

2 thoughts on “The Power of Subtitles: How to Captivate and Hook your Reader?”

  1. Avatar photo
    Bidhan Parajuli

    Thanks Vinay . Nicely done article . I work in an English to Nepali subtitle company and i know how important it is to recognize the impact of subtitle on both the scripts or videos . I think subtitle should be easy to relate with the overall story of whats going on and that way the user finds the overall subject is sync and can understand it better .

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