According to BuzzSumo, in their sample of the most powerful three-word phrase used in a headline on Facebook and Twitter -by some margin- was:

  “Will make you … “

BuzzSumo stated that the phrase “will make you” gained more than twice the number of Facebook engagements as the second most popular headline trigram. “This was a surprise. When we started out looking for top trigrams, this one wasn’t even on our list.

“So why does this particular trigram or three word phrase work so well? One of the interesting things is that it is a linking phrase. It doesn’t start or end a headline, rather it makes explicit the linkage between the content and the potential impact on the reader.

“This headline format sets out why the reader should care about the content. It also promises that the content will have a direct impact on the reader, often an emotional reaction. The headline is clear and to the point which makes it elegant and effective.

“Typical headlines include:

  • 24 Pictures That Will Make You Feel Better About The World
  • What This Airline Did for Its Passengers Will Make You Tear Up – So Heartwarming
  • 6 Harsh Truths That Will Make You a Better Person
  • “Who Wore It Better?” Pics That Will Make You Laugh Out Loud
  • 13 Travel Tips That Will Make You Feel Smart

“In our analysis we found that emotional phrases were consistently effective on Facebook as measured by the number of interactions. For example:

  • Tears of joy
  • Make you cry
  • Give you goosebumps
  • Is too cute
  • Shocked to see
  • Melt your heart
  • Can’t stop laughing

“Many of the top performing posts with emotional headlines had image or video content although there were also story posts.”

You can check out the full story here.

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