Choose this type of blurb for feature or benefits head
When you write a benefits head or feature head, your headline doesn’t necessarily explain the angle — or even the topic — of the story.
This headline from Entertainment Design hints at, but doesn’t explain, the story’s topic. That means the deck has to answer the reader’s question, “But what’s this about?”
The Sounds of Science
In space, nobody can hear you scream —unless you have a really good sound system
Cover these important points in a summary deck.
Use a summary deck with feature headlines.
Readers might enjoy clever, cryptic headlines, but they won’t jump from one directly into the story. They want to know what the story’s about before they make that kind of commitment.
So write one short sentence that distills the essence of your article and convinces the reader to “buy,” or read, it.
This Baylor College headline is intriguing, but readers want to know what they’re getting into before they read a story. The summary deck covers the article angle:
The Art of Conception
Physicians at Baylor College of Medicine’s Assisted Reproductive Technology program are creating new hopes — and babies — for infertile couples
This USA Today headline conveys the tone of the article, but not its content. The deck covers the substance so the headline can focus on the style:
Bereaved families and grateful organ recipients meet
This USA Today headline grabs attention, while the deck communicates the gist of the story:
Bullying’s day in court
From hall monitors to personal injury lawyers: Parents send a message by forcing bullies from the schoolhouse to the courthouse
Use summary, benefits deck with benefits heads.
When you write a benefits headline, you have two options:
- Layer on the benefits in the deck.
- Summarize key story elements in the deck.
1. Layer on the benefits.
Readers love benefits, so pile them on, using the same techniques you used to write your benefits headline. Expand on the benefit you mentioned in the headline or offer a secondary benefit in the deck.
Here’s a good benefits deck, from a sales letter from business development consultant Randy Gage:
The secret to becoming a millionaire professional speaker …
Make money while you sleep when you use your expertise to develop passive income
2. Summarize key story elements.
This benefits headline is provocative, but now the reader wants details:
Get all your work done in half the time, be the office hero, and go home early
A summary deck might give the reader those details by covering the who and what behind the headline’s promise:
Saba’s latest teleseminar aims to help managers double productivity
Don’t drop the summary deck.
Feature and benefits heads intrigue, provoke and entertain. But they don’t encapsulate the key components of the story.
The solution: Write a good summary deck that does.