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The tenacious, newly-crowned national champion Baylor Bears isn’t the only team who dazzled as they danced through the NCAA tournament. 

Google’s spectacular spot was a March Madness winner, encouraging the public to "get back to what you love" with the ad that ends with the search phrase: "covid vaccine near me."

The minute-long ad chronicles search terms throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and illustrates how those terms may be changing as a result of vaccinations, allowing the world to transition from virtual events to in-person gatherings.

The ad begins with a litany of search terms from earlier in the pandemic, such as "quarantine," "social distancing," "lockdown" and "restrictions de voyage" (travel restrictions) in a French search.

Then "sweat pants" transforms to simply "pants" and a scheduled "virtual happy hour" shifts to a real "happy hour" calendar notice. A Google Maps theater location changes from "temporarily closed" to "open." The music becomes increasingly upbeat before landing on a final set of keystrokes to spell out: "covid vaccine near me."

"While there’s still uncertainty ahead, the vaccine gives us reason for hope," Google says in the spot. "As the vaccine becomes more available, you may have questions. Search 'covid vaccine' to get the facts." The ad also encourages viewers to visit the website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

While Google actually published the "Get back to what you love" video on YouTube in late March, it's gaining traction after airing during the NCAA Final Four games over the weekend, according to 9to5Google, a publication that covers Google-related news that is unaffiliated with the company.

As of press time, the CDC reported that more than 63 million people in the USA, or 19% of the population, are now fully vaccinated, and 106 million, or 32%, have received at least one dose.

Get your vaccine, y’all!

 

todd smith

TODD SMITH

14 Strategies to Writing Attention-Grabbing Social Media Headlines 

If you regularly use social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Reddit, you may have noticed how many people will share a published article after reading only the headline.

For this reason, it’s in publishers’ best interest to make their headlines as engaging and “clickable” as possible. However, it’s also important to get the gist of the article across accurately and succinctly.

A panel of Forbes Communications Council members have shared 14 of their best tips for crafting attention-grabbing headlines. The Council is an invitation-only community for executives in successful public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agencies. Check it out:

 

1. Fill A Curiosity Gap

While a headline is meant to capture attention, crafting one that piques readers’ interest will buy additional attention that can invoke action where they may go beyond a title. Incorporate aspects that are useful, emotional, sensational and somehow irresistible. They should aspire to incite inspiration, fear, anger, shock or awe, but most of all, to fill a curiosity gap. - Mark NicholsonMatch Financial

 

2. Connect With The Reader

You only get seconds to grab a reader’s attention, and that’s why engaging headlines are so important. A headline needs to deliver quality content in a short sentence, so it’s important to connect with the reader, give a visual and convince your audience to click. It’s equally important that the headline is relevant to the content. Otherwise, you will quickly lose the reader. - Ami DeWillePerform[cb]

 

3. Start Backwards

Before writing your headline, think about what you want news outlets to say in their headline. For example, if a journalist were to pick up your story, ideally, what would their tweet be? Then, write your headline based on that. - Brittney ManchesterCatholic Charities of Oregon

 

4. Write Truthful Headlines

Don’t be a clickbaiter. Sharing stories without reading or verifying that they are truthful only leads to the deterioration of social media. As communications professionals, we need to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Let’s commit to giving consumers the truth, and then let the clicks fall where they may. - Mike NeumeierArketi Group

 

5. Be Crisp, Concise and Catchy

Crisp, concise and catchy headlines make for vivid stories. Be artfully challenging and innovative. Headline crafting is most critical if you want the media to pick it up as close to your version as possible. - Arati MukerjiTata Communications Ltd

 

6. Resist Including Product or Brand Names

Except for big brands, most readers won’t necessarily know your company’s product names. Focus on the “aha” of your story and boil it down into a few words; that’s your headline. - Emily HardieLindsay Corporation

 

7. Keep Your Audience in Mind

You should always write your headline with your audience in mind. What’s in it for them? What will entice them and make them want to read more? - Kathy SucichDimensional Insight

 

8. Consider What Will Evoke a Strong Reaction

Think about the readers of your article and how they will relate to its content. Then, make sure the headline will evoke a strong reaction in your audience. Many times, your only chance to engage the reader is purely by headline! - Kris PugsleyON Semiconductor

 

9. Use Specifics Instead of Buzzwords

Use specifics versus very high-level, general buzzwords so that people know what they’ll be getting in the content. At the same time, make the headline short and sweet, not a long sentence explaining every detail of what the content is about. Lastly, show that you’ve distilled the key insights for them, which is most easily done with headlines such as “5 Lessons,” “3 Key Steps” or “5 Examples.” - Tom TreanorTreasure Data

 

10. Make It Captivating and Interesting

This allows the reader to get sucked into the article on first glance. Think from the reader’s perspective and brainstorm possible eye-catching titles, which usually help too. - Christian AndersonLost Boy Entertainment Company

 

11. Have Enough Words to Create Interest

The mistake people make is writing short headlines. Headlines should be long. You need to have enough words to grab attention and create interest. Why should a headline be long? Most often it’s the only thing people read! - Andrea d’AgostiniAmerican Power & Gas

 

12. Experiment and Track Results

Focus on the reader and don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Keep in mind that not all readers are the same; some audiences may prefer shocking headlines, while others may be turned off by them. Getting to know your audience by experimenting and tracking results is the key to gaining attention through headlines or other copy. - Lyndsi StevensCelerium

 

13. Back Up Claims With Proof

For a technical or engineering audience, the headline has to be something that grabs their attention without causing an immediately cynical reaction. It’s best to make a claim, but also ensure that the claim is backed up with proof in the article or release. Otherwise, it’s simply propaganda. If it offers an engineer a chance to learn something new, it will also be attractive to that audience. - Rachael Dalton-TaggartDyndrite

 

14. Don’t Write A Headline Just To Get Clicks

You might get more clicks that way, but people will bounce when they realize the headline has nothing to do with the article. Summarize your entire article into a sentence, then see if you can make it even shorter. If it makes sense to add a number, do so, as that has been shown to increase the number of clicks an article receives. - Haseeb TariqDisney, Fox, Guess

 

» TODD SMITH is co-founder, president and chief executive officer of Deane | Smith, a full-service branding, PR, marketing and advertising firm with offices in Jackson. The firm – based in Nashville, Tenn. – is also affiliated with Mad Genius. Contact him at todd@deanesmithpartners.com, follow him @spinsurgeon and like the ageny on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/deanesmithpartners, and join us on LinkedIn  http://www.linkedin.com/company/deane-smith-&-partners. 

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