Blog

How to Write Must-Read Media Pitch Subject Lines

You can write your little heart out, but when it comes time to conjure up a compelling subject line for the press… you freeze.

What if it’s not good enough?

What if you spend days trying to find “just” the right words and come up with nada?

But writing subject lines doesn’t have to be so hard. In fact, it’s one of my favorite things to teach!

Best of all … the methods I’m about to share involve one of my ALL time favorite topics: magazines!

Here it is:

The Trashy Tabloid Method To Writing Must-Read Subject Lines! 😉

First: create a fascinating subject line file.

Advertising pros call this a “swipe file.” Basically, it’s just a list of headlines that you like, curated from magazines and newsletters OUTSIDE OF YOUR INDUSTRY (you don’t want to accidentally get “inspired” by the competition ;-))

I store my fav headlines in a Google Doc and whenever I see a compelling headline, I plop it into my Doc.

My favorite places to search for hot headlines:

:: National consumer magazines (Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Men’s Health, etc.)

:: Entertainment magazines + tabloids (US Weekly, People, InStyle, etc.)

:: National morning show segment titles (Today Show, Good Morning America)

:: National newspapers (NY Times, Wall Street Journal)

:: Must-read blogs (pick your favs!)

Here are a few headlines I recently jotted down:

: These Moms Were Against Vaccines—Until They Had a Change of Heart

: How Heart Palpitations Led Me to Discover I Was Approaching Menopause

: How My Worst Date Ever Became My Best

Once I’ve snagged a few headlines that I like, I can “re-mix” them to make them work for my business.

For example:

These Moms Were Against Vaccines—Until They Had a Change of Heart becomes…

I Was Against Meditation—Until I Had a Change of Heart

How Heart Palpitations Led Me to Discover I Was Approaching Menopause becomes…

How an Erotic Novel Led Me to Uncover a Long-Buried Dream

How My Worst Date Ever Became My Best becomes…

How My Worst Business Decision Ever Became My Best Month for Profit

Your turn!

Create your Swipe File, plug in your own words and give it a fresh spin… and your subject lines will POP!