36 Outrageous Headlines You Can’t Help but Click

by Andrew Warner


It’s practically a blogging commandment.

Thou shalt write great headlines.

And even if those words have never been etched into stone, it’s still rock-solid advice.

After all, if your headline fails to grab attention, the rest of your post is frankly irrelevant.

Knowing this, you take your headlines seriously.

You study proven headline formulas.

You use power words and sensory words to add emotion.

You tweak every word until it’s perfect.

But sometimes your results fall short. You can’t help feeling some magical ingredient is missing, but you don’t know what it is.

Fortunately, one ingredient will almost guarantee your headlines get clicked like crazy every time.

So, do you want to know what it is?

The Headline Writer’s “Secret Sauce” You Can Find in Any Grocery Store

Ever visited your local grocery store and been stopped dead in your tracks – by a headline?

Here’s the scene. You’re in line to check out, and the person ahead of you decides to pay for their groceries with nothing but small change.


As you wait patiently, your eyes wander across to the tabloids and magazines in the rack by the counter and suddenly – bam!

A headline leaps out at you.

You know the type. One that makes you think – WTF?

Admit it. The urge to pick up the magazine and turn the page is almost impossible to resist.

Even though you never normally read those magazines. Even though you know you’re being manipulated.

You can’t stop yourself taking a quick peek inside.

Wouldn’t you love people to feel the same way about your blog headlines?

The secret to headlines that demand attention from the most disengaged reader or writing client is that they are truly outrageous. They whisk you from indifferent to incredulous in a split second.

The following blog headlines all have this O-Factor.

Study them and learn how to bring the shocking power of outrageousness to your own blog.

Real-World Headlines That’ll Suck Your Eyeballs Out of Your Skull

1) How To Quit Your Job, Move To Paradise and Get Paid To Change The World – Jon Morrow

If you’ve followed Jon for some time, you’ll already be familiar with this headline, taken from his breakthrough post on Problogger.

And when you really break it down, it’s one hell of an outrageous claim – that you can “quit your job, move to paradise and get paid to change the world.”

You mean someone will actually pay me to do that?

For anyone unhappy – or even just a little restless – in their current job, this headline dangles an irresistible carrot.

You must click on this headline because you must know how such a thing can be true.

2) How Spending $162,301.42 on Clothes Made Me $692,500 – Neil Patel

This headline draws you in right away, doesn’t it?

First, the idea that anyone can spend so much money on clothes is outrageous, even obscene. What sort of person could justify spending so much (and not be too ashamed to admit it?)

Secondly, you can’t help but wonder: how is it even possible to make money by spending money on clothes? Let alone over 300% in profit.

It seems too incredible to believe. And that’s exactly why you must click to find out more.

3) Caution: Stop Masturbating With Your Money – Ashley Ambirge

Wow – that word really hits you between the eyes, doesn’t it?

After all, when was the last time you read a headline with the word masturbation?

But it’s not just a cheap shock tactic. The author used it to create intrigue for her post.

What does it actually mean to masturbate with your money? Does she mean it literally?

And that’s why this headline is so outrageous. It combines potentially shocking language with an intriguing concept, and the result is almost impossible to ignore.

4) How I’m Going To Lose All My Customers And Wreck My Business – Tim Brownson

If you spend any time at all reading blogs, you’ll have seen more than your fair share of “How to” headlines.

But this one is a little different. Rather than helping the reader do something, Tim seems hellbent on sabotaging his own business.

And you simply have to know why.

5) 16 Unethical Life Hacks You Won’t Learn In School – Daily Pastime

It’s the word unethical that makes this headline so outrageous.

Most of us are interested in hacks that make our lives easier – but unethical ones?

I mean, we should just turn away, right? But the idea of getting an unfair advantage, even if it means being unethical, is too damn appealing.

This type of headline works because the shady edges of human experience will always be fascinating to us. (Think about how much we love crime stories.)

6) How A Single Guest Post May Have Gotten An Entire Site Penalized By Google – Danny Sullivan

Early last year, Google’s Matt Cutts caused a storm by declaring guest blogging dead.

Well, the dust has settled, and high-quality guest posts are still a great way to promote your blog.

Nevertheless, Matt’s declaration highlighted how guest blogging done the wrong way can cause you problems with Google. (In fact, if you are writing or accepting guest posts on your blog, this headline might trigger sweat-dripping, heart-pounding panic.)

But what’s eye-catchingly outrageous about this headline is the idea that just one guest post can affect an entire site.

It seems so unfair, right? That a single misstep could land your site in serious trouble.

So, what the hell did Danny do that got his whole site penalized?

You have to click to find out so you can avoid the same horrible fate.

7) Why James Chartrand Wears Women’s Underpants – James Chartrand

A person’s underwear preferences are surely a private matter.

So why is this writer revealing his surprising fetish in a headline? And why on earth is he doing it on a popular marketing blog?

This is of course the famous post revealing that James Chartrand, the “man” behind Men With Pens, is in fact a woman.

It’s a shocking unmasking. And what a joyfully outrageous way to do it.

8) Twentysomething: Why I Regret Getting Straight A’s In College – Jon Morrow

Who on earth would have the gall to say they regret getting straight A’s in college?

*shakes head*

Not only is it a slap in the face to those who work their backsides off, struggle, and can only manage a B average, but you’re also left thinking, “What the hell happened to Jon for him to feel that getting straight A’s was a mistake?”

What does that headline make you think the rest of the post will say?

That you should try to get low grades in school? Or stop taking school so seriously and start slacking off?

Either is pretty outrageous, right? That’s why you have to click.

9) 5 Ways Stores Use Science to Trick You Into Buying Crap – Paul K. Pickett

We’ve all been into a store and bought more than we intended, right?

Happens all the time. Nobody to blame but ourselves.

But what’s shocking about this headline is its suggestion that the real reason for this behavior is not our own lack of self-discipline, but stores’ sneaky use of scientific tricks to manipulate us.

Worse still, they’re using these tricks to make us buy crap – not only stuff we don’t need, but stuff that’s also practically worthless.

It’s an outrageous practice – and you’re the victim.

So how can you deny yourself from knowing the truth? You have to click.

10) Why Successful People Are Douchebags – Neil Patel

Calling anyone a douchebag is a bold and risky move.

Calling out an entire group of people on a public blog is borderline offensive. (Imagine how you’d feel if that group was people of a particular race, gender, or religion.)

But Neil Patel’s target group is successful people.

And sure, some successful people are douchebags. But all successful people? That’s quite an outrageous claim, no?

Many successful people will have worked hard to get where they are. And even if you’re not successful by conventional measures, you’d like to be someday, wouldn’t you?

Neil’s playing a dangerous game here, and we want to watch it play out.

11) How Formal Education Killed The Passionate Career (+ A Practical Guide for Students, Parents & Lifelong Learners) – Scott Dinsmore

What’s this – a formal attack on the educational system?

Pretty outrageous, right?

Certainly it’s likely to ruffle a few feathers among people inside – and outside – the system.

But the specific claim is even more outrageous – that formal education is not just incompatible with having a passionate career, but it also has killed off the entire concept.

You’ve just got to find out if Scott’s argument stands up, so you click.

12) Choose to be Outstanding (Or Choose to Continue to Suck) – Johnny B. Truant

This essentially says: unless you choose to be outstanding, you’re choosing to suck.

That’s a provocative statement.

After all, who would actually choose to suck at something? Well, you, according to Johnny.

Because with this headline, there is no middle ground. Johnny is forcing you, right here and right now, to make a decision.

That’s rather outrageous of him, don’t you think?

13) Why Clever Posts Titles Are Killing Your Blog – Greg Narayan

The key to this headline is the word clever.

Cleverness is usually considered a good thing, so the suggestion that it’s killing your blog is somewhat outrageous.

In fact, the real implication is that you might be trying to be a little too clever. And perhaps even a little too pleased with yourself. And that’s difficult to hear.

So, are you guilty of trying to be too clever for your own good?

To find out the answer, you’re forced to click and get the whole story.

14) Marriage Isn’t For You – Seth Adam Smith


This headline is a click-magnet for almost everybody. Single people. Married couples. It doesn’t matter – it has the potential to outrage almost anyone.

For starters, it seems to be an attack on the whole institution of marriage. That’s sure to upset a few people, right?

It also presumes to know a lot about the reader. It’s a verbal slap in the face that could cause them to get very defensive.

“How dare you? You don’t know anything about me! How can you possibly say marriage isn’t for me?

15) What’s Scarier Than The Sex Talk? Talking About Food & Weight! – Perfectly Unperfected

What parent wouldn’t be sweaty-palmed about having the sex talk with their child? In fact, it’s a little outrageous to even mention it in a headline, isn’t it?

But the real shock comes with the idea that a conversation about your child’s weight is even scarier. What does that say about our attitudes toward food and obesity?

16) Eyes Wide Shut: Here’s Why I DON’T Want To Know What My Teenager is REALLY Up To – Lisa Barr

Sounds like irresponsible parenting, doesn’t it? Sticking your head in the sand and ignoring what your teenager is really doing.

As a parent, shouldn’t you want to know what your teenager is up to? Who their friends are? Where they’re going?


But this headline is so outrageous because it taps into a dirty little thought that many parents have – maybe it’s better to not know.

And if they don’t know, their squeaky-clean image of their teenager won’t be tarnished.

17) SEO Is Dead. Link Building Is Dead. Your Pony Is Dead – Ana Hoffman

This headline is loaded with outrageousness.

For starters, it has the audacity to declare the entire field of SEO dead. That’s outrageous, even arrogant.

And it bangs a nail in the coffin of link building, perhaps the most treasured tactic in SEO. That’s outrageous too.

But the dead pony reference is the clincher. It adds insult to outrage. (Who wants the image of a dead pony in their head?)

It’s just a crass trick to get your attention, surely. (But it worked, didn’t it?)

If you care about SEO, this headline will probably make you angry, and you’ll want to click it so you can wade into the argument.

18) Failure Is An Option – Chase Reeves

This headline plays on the motivational mantra of “failure is NOT an option.” So by saying the opposite, it almost sounds like Chase is anti-success.

And that’s outrageous, isn’t it? How can success be bad?

I’m sure you’ll admit that it creates curiosity. Maybe the post will even suggest that failure is better than success. What a scandalous idea!

But the only way to find that out is by clicking the headline.

19) How Grabbing Drinks After Work is Killing Your Budget – Gail Gardner

Calling all business professionals who bust their backsides every day in a job they hate for a boss that doesn’t appreciate them.

Grabbing a cold drink at the end of a rough day to soothe your stress and calm your nerves could be a dumb move.

This headline is a kick in the gut for anyone who feels a post-work beer is a well-earned treat.

You’ll want to click to find out if the claim is truly justified.

20) What Weird Al Yankovic can teach us about blogging – Kevin Duncan

Ever heard of Weird Al?

The guy who does parodies of almost anything from celebrities to food?

What makes this headline outrageous is the thought that a wacky performer like Weird Al, who once did a classic parody called “White & Nerdy,” can teach you something about blogging.

It’s almost laughable. But because you can’t help but wonder what the connection is, you know what you have to do to find out.

21) Facebook Doesn’t Care About Your Reach — And Neither Do Users – Jon Loomer

If you’re trying to build a following on Facebook, how can you ignore this?

You treasure each new “like” of your Facebook page because it means your reach is expanding.

So to hear that Facebook doesn’t give a damn about your following is a kick in the teeth.

Don’t they want you to be successful on their platform? How can they not care?

22) 10 Reasons Men Shouldn’t Be Helping Their Wives With The Housework – Aimee Ogden

This headline will certainly be outrageous to some.

If the post is true to the headline, other women may see the author as a traitor to her gender.

If it’s a sarcastic post, it might be seen as baiting men.

So which is it? You’re forced to read the post to find out if she’s being serious or tongue-in-cheek.

23) 5 Ways Women Are Better Bosses Than Men – Barry Moltz

Nothing like a good debate, right?

But these days the idea that one gender is better at anything than the other is an outrageous statement.

But you’ll click this headline because you want to know why this (male) author feels this way? Will it be a snarky, sarcastic post? Or a feminist view from a male perspective?

And as an exercise in outrageousness, think how you’d feel if a woman wrote this post, not a man. Would it cross the line, or not?

24) How Facebook Ruined Christmas – Jay Baer


Say it ain’t so! First the Grinch stole Christmas; now Facebook wants to ruin it.

It’s true that Facebook has had some trust issues in recent times. But it’s extreme to suggest they actually ruined Christmas. And kinda funny too.

Even if you’re a Facebook hater, you want to know how the author will back this up.

After all, if Facebook really ruined Christmas, wouldn’t you know about it already?

25) Why Breakfast Is Not the Most Important Meal of the Day – Richard Talens

You know what this headline is saying?

It’s saying that you’ve been lied to your entire childhood – and adulthood too. Lied to by your parents. By your family doctor. By whoever had the nerve to utter the phrase, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.”

Nothing but lies. And because this headline is questioning something that you’ve known, or have been told, your whole life, you can’t help but find out whether you were really misled for all this time.

26) 10 Reasons Why Prom Night Is Overrated For Students  – Ashley Reese

If you ever went to prom, you know how big of a deal it is, right?

You’ve spent months, even years, looking forward to that crowning moment of your high school career. The perfect outfit. The stretch limo. The treasured memories.

So isn’t it outrageous (and a little mean) that someone is trying to undermine those memories in a single blog post?

Or how about if you haven’t attended your prom yet? Being told it’s overrated would suck.

So what’s the deal here? You’ll have to click to find out.

27) Your Penis Won’t Fall Off And Other Things Boys Should Know – Rita Templeton

That got your attention, right?

Seeing the word “penis” in a headline is surprising and maybe shocking – even if it is a mommy blog.

But if you’re a first-time parent of a boy, you’ll wonder, “Is that really an issue? Do they really think that? Plus, what other crazy things do young boys think?”

28) Why Blogging is a Waste of Your Time – Ramsay Taplin

How many hours a week do you spend on your blog?

Ten? Twenty? More?

A headline like this could leave your heart in your throat because it says what some bloggers might secretly fear – that blogging is a waste of their time.

And since the author is a popular blogger, your curiosity is heightened. If this blogger (who is likely more successful than his average reader) is saying this, what has he discovered that you need to know?

29) How To See Straighter By Crossing Your Eyes – David Cain

Doesn’t this headline seem completely outrageous?

How can doing something that many people think could damage your eyesight possibly help you see straighter?

It’s impossible to comprehend – but filled with intrigue. You’re left wondering whether this headline is supposed to be taken literally – or if’s it’s a metaphor – or something else altogether.

But whatever it is, you’re lured into clicking to find out.

30) My son is getting an American Girl Doll for Christmas – Lori Duron

This headline plays with gender stereotypes.

Traditional thinking says that dolls are for girls, not boys. So why is this author’s son getting one for Christmas?

Is it because he actually wants one for Christmas? Or is his mother enforcing her own progressive agenda to her child?

Both alternatives provoke curiosity, or even outrage.

But whatever your views, one question remains.

Just why is this boy getting a doll for Christmas?

31) Why The Blogging Experts Are Wrong About Headlines – Stan Smith

You know that in the blogging world, it’s universally accepted that headlines are one of the most important elements to master.

In fact, most of your blogging heroes will have something to say about headlines.

So suggesting that these heavyweights are totally wrong about such a crucial blogging ingredient is outrageous.

We might think, “Who the hell are you Stan Smith to be saying my heroes are wrong? And, more importantly, what does it mean for me if you’re right?”

32) It’s Always Your Fault, So Stop Making Excuses – Evan Luzi

Though this headline is aimed at camera assistants, anyone can tell how effective it is.

You can easily imagine that assistants might be the first to get blamed for almost any problem on a shoot, and you may even transpose this to your own line of work.

The outrageousness comes from being told that it’s ALWAYS your fault, whatever the context.

Can it truly always be your fault? It almost sounds like bullying from the author, doesn’t it?

You’ll have to click to find out.

33) On The Inside, We Are All Afraid Of Having An Ugly Baby – Bethany Ramos

This one is dangerously powerful, isn’t it?

After all, what parent-to-be doesn’t hope their baby will be cute as a button?

But suggesting that parents are secretly afraid of having an ugly baby is outrageous.

After all, it paints them as shallow and appearance-conscious – even with their own flesh and blood. Shouldn’t parental love be unconditional?

But if it didn’t contain a seed of truth, would it be as enticing as it is?

34) 10 Types Of Sex You’ll Have Once You’re A Parent – Megan Zander

Most expectant parents are told that sex disappears from the menu once a new baby arrives.

So it’s outrageous (and maybe a little exciting) to hear that not only will you be having sex after you become a parent – but ten types of it!

Be honest, you’re curious about the types on the list.

35) Why I’ll Always Put My Husband Before My Kids – Amber Doty

Mothers should put their kids above all else, right? Even their partners. At least, that’s a common belief.

But this author thinks otherwise – how outrageous! Surely her husband can look after himself?

This headline challenges society’s notions of the family pecking order, and we desperately want to find out why she thinks this way.

36) 21 Reasons To Hate Kids – Yvette Caster

Doesn’t this one just grab you by the eyeballs? You have to click.

(Assuming you can get past your sense of outrage that is.)

Kids are supposed to be innocent, right?  They hardly seem like a fair target for any type of hatred.

But let’s consider just how outrageous this title truly is.

A post that revealed the author hated kids would be somewhat shocking.

A post that tried to reassure us that it’s okay to hate kids would be more shocking.

But this post, which tries to persuade people to hate kids – people who maybe didn’t hate kids before – is downright outrageous.

And secretly you want to know why.

Want to Get Read? Get Outrageous!

Outrageous headlines grab readers by the collar and practically drag them into your post.

But like your favorite hot sauce, outrageousness must be used sparingly.

If you add it to everything you write, it’ll drown out the subtler flavors of your writing.

But used occasionally, in the right places, a dose of outrageousness can be just what you need to get your headline clicked and your post read.

So give your reasonable, respectable side the rest of the day off.

It’s time to be a little outrageous.

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Andrew Warner


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Written by Andrew Warner

183 thoughts on “36 Outrageous Headlines You Can’t Help but Click”

  1. Wow, Great list. I will admit, I ended up opening half of them just to take a peak. having examples like this really helps you find what works and can help you learn what types of headlines you should be writing.

    Love the idea of being different and creating outrage to draw attention, whats the worst that can happen?


    • Hey Chris,

      Thanks for the comment. I agree, these are some click-worthy headlines that you just have to take a peek at. And they do help you learn how to structure your headlines to being more outrageous.

      You’re right. What’s the worst that can happen if you do create headlines like these?

      I appreciate you taking time to comment. Have an awesome day.

      – Andrew

      • Hello Andrew !

        Congrats on the guest post and yes indeed I enjoyed it. I love that this was not just another “How to write a perfect headline” post (I have one of those actually, lol) but you actually took headlines from famous blog posts and analyzed each one of them.

        I think the most shocking one for me was the “James Chartrand” with the women’s underpants. That really had me at the edge of my seat until you explained what they were actually saying in the post. That must have gotten a lot of people ! Haha.

        I also enjoyed “Marriage is Not For You”. I had actually read that post about a year or two ago. When I first saw it I was like “What does he mean marriage is not for me? ” in a sort of snarky manner. And yet the post was such a poignant piece on how unselfish people need to be in a marriage.

        Headline art at its’ finest.

        Loved it. Thanks Andrew for the amazing post 🙂

      • Hey Gertrude,

        Thanks for the comment.

        There are a lot of those, “How to write a perfect headline” isn;t there? I didn’t want this to be another one of those, definitely.

        Haha, yea, the James Chartrand one was shocking. Imagine the chock when people read it when it was first published. Here’s this well known blogger admitting that they’re not a man, but really a woman pretending to be a man.

        Hollywood movie, right?

        Haha, yea the marriage one is one that probably caused the same reaction you had. That meant it was a great and outrageous headline because you WANTED to know what he meant.

        Thanks again for the comment.

        – Andrew

    • Hey Chris,
      You got here before me 😉

      BTW congrats on grabbing this spot on BBT

      (Cleared my throat)

      Andrew, I think you cracked the code. These are some exciting examples to show the power of headlines. It’s difficult to read through this post without clicking them. Now, I have so many tabs opened on my browser 😉

      Let me also check them out and thanks buddy for such a resourceful article.

      Hope you are having a wonderful week

      • Hey Enstine,

        Thanks for the comment.

        Not sure about cracking the code, just yet. However, these are some pretty darn good, enticing headlines, you have to admit.

        I think headlines like these can be used as a great resource to write better headlines in general.

        Thanks again for stopping by.

        – Andrew

  2. Hi Andrew

    You’ve used some excellent examples to demonstrate just how important headlines are – some of which I remember reading way back when, so they definitely made an impact. Heck, I don’t remember my name half the time – lol.

    With so many established blogs online nowadays, and pretty much every niche being totally over-saturated, we are all fighting for the attention of readers…

    …and if our headlines don’t jump out, grab them by the scruff of their shirt to demand attention…no one’s going to listen to a single word we say.

    Great post as always Andrew 🙂

    • Hi Kerry,

      Thanks for the comment.

      It took a while to find quality and truly outrageous headlines to use, but all that hard work paid off.

      Like you said, we’re all fighting for attention and sometimes the generic “How To…” headlines don’t always do it. You have to be outrageous from time to time. You have to “grab them by the scruff of their shirt.”

      That’s an awesome line by the way.

      Thanks again for the comment.

      – Andrew

    • Hi Sue,

      Thanks for the comment and glad you get an opportunity to meet some new people as well. That’s what I love about post like these — it exposes you to a wide variety of people you may not have had the chance to meet before.

      Thanks again for the comment.

      – Andrew

  3. Hi Andrew,

    great post.

    Writing good headlines is one of the most important skills any blogger / marketer could have, and improve.


    Because if you can`t get people`s attention with you headline, there is no way that they will read your content.

    Thanks for sharing these great headlines


    Keep on rocking, mate.


    • Hi Tor,

      Thanks for the comment.

      You said it there, my friend. If you can’t get people`s attention with you headline, there is no way that they will read your content.

      You have no idea how true that is. And one of the best ways to create attention is to be outrageous from time to time. Stand out. Take chances.

      It can be a HUGE payoff if you take that chance and especially if it works.

      Thanks again for the comment.

      – Andrew

  4. Great post Andrew. You hooked me into your article from your own enticing headline. Now I’m using all the willpower I have not to go reading all these articles you’ve linked to and instead get back to work.

    I think James Chartrand’s post is the most memorable for me, not just for the great headline but also the plot twist.

    Number 3 made me laugh. I fear it shows the level of my humour. Will be coming back to read some of the blogging related articles later. Great stuff!


    • Hey Edward,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Give in lol. These headlines are too enticing to get any “work” done lol.

      But it shows you how powerful headlines really are. Once they hook you, you’re pretty much at the mercy of the post. Then it’s up to the post to deliver and keep you reading.

      Yea, that James Chartrand one is definitely memorable. I remember when I first saw the headline, I was thinking “This must be some ritual that enables him to write much better.”

      But as I read it, I got the shock of my life. Very good plot twist.

      And as for what Ashley Ambirge wrote, that’s definitely a shocker — an I can’t help but chuckle when I read that as well lol.

      Thanks for the comment and have an awesome day.

      – Andrew

  5. Andrew, my friend! Congrats and kudos on getting a guest post published at BBT! 🙂

    Thank you for including me in this great article of yours. I’ve written some outrageous headlines for sure, and my “Weird Al” one is definitely one of my most…well, “interesting.”

    Enjoy today, Andrew. You’re going to get a lot of comments, and your site is going to get a nice uptick in new visitors. Hold on tight, though. You’re going to be busy!

    I’ll tweet this shortly. Congrats again, Andrew.


    • Kevin … I did it lol.

      It took a while, but I finally made it to one of my favorite blogs. Guess you can say, I achieved this blogging milestone 😉

      Yea that weird Al post was really classic and Weird Al is so outrageous and funny. I was cracking up at the Lady Gaga video I linked to. HILARIOUS.

      I’ll see how it all goes. I hope this post will go over great. I’m prepared either way.

      I know you’ve been busy lately. How have you been?

      – Andrew

  6. Insanely awesome compilation.

    I have read few of the mentioned posts (Neil Patel, Jon, Ramsay and Greg), and I can say that I clicked the articles because somewhere they hit the push button in my mind.

    I can collect some of the good ideas from this article itself by combining 2 killer headlines.

    Thanks for your countless efforts.

    • Hey Kulwant,

      Thanks for the comment.

      The ones you mentioned there are definitely classics. Which one of those you mentioned was your favorite one? The one that made you immediately say, “Wow, I HAVE to click this.”?

      – Andrew

  7. Hi Andrew,

    Awesome post indeed, and welcome to Jon’s blog – this time on the other side, as a guest 🙂

    You are absolutely right about all that you mentioned, writing an outrageous headline surely gets everyone’s attention, and most of the people you mentioned are wonderful with writing killer headlines, starting with Jon!

    Loved all of your examples in this post too….lol…some of them REALLY grabbed my eyeballs! I guess what matters most is that your headline should make a stranger stop to read and compel him /her to click it, and thus, visit your blog! If you are able to do that, you are good to go! Such headlines one needs more so for the search engines, not your regular readers as much I’d say.

    Thanks for sharing this with us. Have a nice week ahead, both of you 🙂

    • Hi Harleena,

      Thanks for the comment. I know, I’m always usually commenting fairly early on this blog, so it feels great to be on the other side.

      Outrageous headlines really does get attention. Far better than the generic headlines that we see all the time. Like you said, the headlines have to make a stranger stop and read it.

      Don’t you think you would need these type of headlines for regular readers too, though? Because if they share your posts, your headlines will be the main thing that their followers/friends will see and decide whether or not to click. Right?

      – Andrew

  8. Hi Andrew,

    Thank you for these gems. Those are headlines that really rock!

    One thing that I already know is that once I’m living my 6 month escape dream travel adventure in Europe, starting next month, I’ll be coming up with outrageous headlines.

    I say then (as opposed to now), because when it comes to headlines, you don’t want to over do it so that only the headline is valuable. Which we know that happens sometimes wit BIG headlines.

    Bottom line, if your headline rock, your content should rock too.

    Great share! You have a wonderful day ahead!

    • Hi Sylviane,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I remember you have a trip coming up. That SHOULD give you inspiration to come up with some pretty outrageous headlines. 🙂

      Oh you raised a good point. You want to create great headlines that draws people in, but you also want to have your content deliver as well. If the content under-delivers, then the headline won’t be as effective.

      Like you said, if your headline rocks, your content should too. With that being said, you write some pretty awesome content, so you should have no problem coming up with crazy, outrageous headlines, right Sylviane?

      – Andrew

  9. Hey Andrew.

    Interesting article with some stunning headlines.

    Headlines are so important. As you say, they can stop you dead in your tracks.

    Just recently I was stopped at work by a mock newspaper stand.

    I work in the nuclear industry and the board read ‘Nuclear Plant to Close Down. Hundreds to lose their jobs’ – with a picture of the nuclear plant I work at.

    It stopped me right in my tracks. It was powerful, and it made me read the rest of the board. It was basically highlighting how everyone of us has a role to play in keeping our plant safe, and how if we don’t, we will get closed down. Powerful stuff.

    Just like some of the headlines in your post.

    Great article Andrew, sharing out now.

    • Hey Richard,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Headlines are important and can stop you dead in your tracks … and what you said is living proof. 🙂

      I agree that was a powerful headline. Now, with a headline like that, didn’t you feel slighted? Because from what you described, it was saying that the plant could close down if certain precautions aren’t taken.

      But from what I got from that initial headline, it was saying that the plant is closing down. Or in the process of closing down.

      – Andrew

  10. Hey Andrew,

    Now this is awesome! Glad to see you here (a huge fan of Jon’s blog by the way) and you nailed it, my friend!

    I can’t agree how much headlines play a role clicks and all those goodies. Trust me, it takes A LOT just to create one.

    So, right on my friend. Keep up the good job!

    • Hey Reginald,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I’m a HUGE fan of this blog as well and I’m so honored I got to accomplish one of my milestones.

      Headlines are super important. And like you said, it takes a long time to create a great one. Any specific method you use to create great ones?

      – Andrew

    • Hi Adam,

      Thanks for stopping by and for the comment.

      During the research for this post, aside from being some of the most outrageous headlines found, they were some pretty awesome posts as well.

      Glad you enjoyed it.

      – Andrew

  11. Hi Andrew,
    congratulations on being contributor at Jon’s blog.

    I ended up opening a lot of the articles you mentioned.
    This means that weird and provocative titles work, right?

    Thanks for sharing, keep up the fantastic job!

  12. As you already know by now Andrew, my topic is practically one of the most boring out there.

    Sometimes though, we can get away with outrageous headlines and I can use this list as a reference! 🙂

    I practically clicked on half of those just to see what they were about.

    I’ve been trying to hone my craft and learn from our fellow bloggers like Kevin on how to write more conversationally and darn it, his titles are really amazing as well 🙂

    Congratulations on the great opportunity to post here Andrew! I do hope I get to do the same in the future.

    • Hey Dennis,

      Thanks for the comment.

      We can definitely get away with outrageous headlines … if it’s used sparingly. It can;t be used for each post you put out … then it’ll lose it’s cache.

      Kevin writes some pretty amazing headlines, indeed. Just keep on practicing. And keep on working. I worked hard for this opportunity and now it’s actually here … and I still can;t believe it.

      You work hard, the same will happen to you my friend.

      – Andrew

  13. Andrew–DUDE!!

    (lowers his voice to a respective tone….trembling with excitement and joy for his buddy…)


    Already have my kids out back, chopping down trees to start building a shrine in your honor.

    (gonna take ’em a while though–most are too young to use sharp tools)

    FanTASTIC article…and completely love the examples. Now I have some good things to read for the next week. Also gave me a good boost, knowing I’m not completely crazy with some of my own choice headlines.

    Ya know Andrew, the closer I looked at the list and read your descriptions below, the more I saw an emerging pattern:

    THEY’RE ALL PERSONAL. Each and every headline grabs your attention to one degree or another because they’re personal. They either talk to you as an individual, point at something we DO as individuals…or talk about something we find interesting about OTHER individuals.

    THEY FORCE YOU TO ASSUME OR CLICK. This was a fun experience to me. I read the article…then I went back again to see how the titles affected me emotionally. No reading your explanations this time—just glance and react. Yup. Each one get’s me to assume what they mean or click to know for sure. Since we’re engineered to be problem solvers, there will be more clicks than not.

    THEY CAUSE YOU TO SECOND GUESS YOUR OWN DEFINITIONS. This is HUGE in a world where more and more people seemingly have to be right. This is where I excel—not in being right, but not caring and playing off another’s need or obsession to be right. All stressed out and scraping at the walls while you sit there and just…smile. It’s fun. Again, there’s no way to kn ow if you’re right unless you click. Gotcha.

    THEY SKEW YOUR SEEMINGLY SOLID PERSPECTIVES. The funniest aspect of all these headlines, Andrew, is how they twist yer brain. We’re so sure of ourselves until we read a headline like, “Are You Condemning Your Kids to Poverty, Pregnancy & Prison?” or “Why People Who Bake Cookies and Cakes Are EVIL!” The two that got ME on your list were “21 Reasons to Hate Kids” (mainly because you know I’m a father of 12 and youth teacher/writer…and “Failure Is An Option.”

    BTW…calling someone a “Douchebag” (if they really ARE one) isn’t bold and risky. As far as I’m concerned–so long as they don’t have you’re home address, it’s kinda funny. Not that I’d do it, of course (that would be mean….right?)

    Then again, that’s just me.
    Good job buddy!

    Jaime B.

    • Hey Jaime,

      Thanks for the comment, dude.


      Lol … sharp tools. Hopefully whatever they use, they remember I like and prefer cedar trees. Pass that message along.

      We all could use a boost like this, I don’t think I’ve been as outrageous as some of these headlines here. I know you’ve had some though. Outrageousness works … once in a while. You can’t do it all he time though.

      And you’re right about the patterns.

      I’ve come across A LOT of headlines that were like this, and made me assume what I thought it was about. But I was also thinking, “What if my assumption was wrong?”

      SO then I HAD to click the post to read it.

      Oh and regarding the douchebag reference, as long as they don’t have your home address OR you call them private. Lol.

      – Andrew

  14. Hey Andrew – awesome, awesome, post with some really great examples that totally demonstrate your point.

    My favorite line: “After all, if your headline fails to grab attention, the rest of your post is frankly irrelevant.”

    Such a great reminder to put the time in, to make sure we get our headlines right!

    • Hey Sonia,

      Thanks for the comment.

      That line is very true. But it also works hand-in-hand too. If your headline doesn’t grab attention, then the rest of the post is irrelevant. However, if your headline is amazing, but the rest of the post is meh, then you’re not doing yourself any favors either.

      – Andrew

  15. I’m soaking this up! Thank you for posting these delicious headlines.

    I think it’s super important to remember that no matter how compelling or outrageous the headline is, the content needs to deliver on the headline. There’s some popular sites that are crafting these kinds of headlines and not delivering. Click bait is running amok.

    I’ve only read through 3 of the articles and so far, the content delivers. As does this one, so make it 4!

    • Hi Peggy,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Great point. Like I just said to the comment above, if your headlines are amazing but the content is sub-par, that won’t help you. You can’t click-bait people.

      It may work once or twice, but they you’re stuck.

      Which 3 have you read?

      – Andrew

  16. Hi Andrew

    This post does rock. I had to take a peek at some of the headlines. You mentioned some awesome bloggers.

    True that headlines have a way of attracting attention and you have proven this fact with 36 outrageous headlines.

    Congratulation on featuring as a guest author in BBT. More grace to you elbow.

    Thanks for sharing this post. Have an awesome week.

    • Hi Ikechi,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Your headlines DO have to attract attention to get you to want to read the rest of the post.

      Any particular ones you enjoyed more?

      – Andrew

  17. Awesome post, Andrew!

    My fave? >> “Your Penis Won’t Fall Off And Other Things Boys Should Know” Definitely made me laugh out loud 🙂

    Great job dissecting the headlines and giving us some examples of what works, and why. I definitely know that headlines that make me laugh (like that ^^ one), and ones that contradict something I believe in, draw me in. I feel like I HAVE to read that article. Even if I wouldn’t normally be interested in it.

    Funny how that works, hey? The headline really DOES matter 😉

    • Hi Jenna,

      Thanks for the comment.

      That one really is interesting and funny as well. Definitely shocking and would cause someone to click to read more, wouldn’t it? Especially if you have young boy children.

      Yes, I agree. Headlines like that do draw you in. It makes you curious and want to find out more. Regardless if you’re interested in the topic or not.

      That’s why I refuse to go to Upworthy unless it’s a weekend. 😀

      – Andrew

  18. Hi, Andrew,

    What a post! Wow, outrageous headlines showcased for sure! Outrageous headlines will definitely lure the reader to read that first line, and then the second, if the first line is good… and on to the rest of the blog post.

    Jon is the master at this, I agree!

    Have you ever split tested the same article with two different headlines?

    I couldn’t agree more about using them sparingly, however, so glad you included that. 🙂

    Great job, and congrats on being a guest on Boost Blog Traffic.

    Speak soon,

    • Hi Carol,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Outrageous headlines do work. And like the great copywriter, Joe Sugarman says, you have to lead them down that slippery slope.

      So if you catch their attention with the headline, then you better make sure the rest of your content really delivers and makes them want to read.

      I have to say no I haven’t ever split test the same article with 2 different headlines. Not on the actual post. I do when I’m sharing them though.

      But I may have to consider that. Have you?

      – Andrew

  19. Well, Andrew, you’ve confirmed one thing I always knew but hated to admit to my priest confessor aka my wife. If I use one or more of these words in a headline, I’ll go viral faster than ebola. And attract a thousand low-lives to my site who will clog my list. Spam my comments thread. And convert to sale only if I was selling crack cocaine at a discount.

    These words, as found in the headlines above, are truly killer words. They are seriously to be avoided. Why? They attract only douche-bags and kill sales from the customers we really want:

    Masturbating, Suck, Unethical, Underpants, Crap, Douchebags, Killing, Sex, Dead, Weird, Ruined, Penis, Hate

      • Like Jon, I had to click on three of the headlines just while reading this post! And I’m a (too) free spender on the internet with a J.D. and 15 years of experience as a specialist lawyer. A lot of websites have been pretty glad I visited them over the years.

      • Exactly, Jon. A lot of people who are professionals click on headlines like this all the time.

        And Diedre, you’re so right as well/ It has nothing to do with the specific words that’s used, rather, how enticing you actually make readers want to click.

    • Hi John,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Although I don’t agree that using any of these words will be attracting low-lifes to a post. Regardless of what headline you choose to write, outrageous or not, it’s still up to you to deliver on the content.

      I don’t think these words need to be avoided at all. I disagree with that. It solely depends what your intentions are. If you’re intending to use it as click-bait, then that’s pretty foolish. However, if you actually deliver on the content, then those that comment and sign up would have found interest in the actual content.

      Plus, you’re able to moderate whatever comments come true, right? SO if you find that people are just being childish with the topic based on a word, why would your accept it?

      • Thanks for that thoughtful reply, Andrew. My point was that a title is a qualifier. Its job is to qualify out those folk who are never going to give us money, as much as to qualify in those who might. So a post title that flaunts the idioms of the gutter will attract only people who live in the gutter. Sans morals, sans money. I don’t want them on my list or even my planet. I’d rather get 100 clickthroughs from people who respond to a headline ‘Are You Too Old To Write A Best Seller?’ (my last post) than a million who click into ‘Does Your Post Suck? Here’s Why.’ My post with the former title has drawn 92 erudite comments since this Saturday and has made me, via signups to my list, $2000 in four days. See why, here:

        Trust me. I started as an ad copywriter fifty years before most of you folks were born. (You too, oh reverend Jon :)) And my ads made me millions. (No begging letters, please. I invested the money in Peruvian butter mines.)

    • I just thought of a blog title.

      “How I Masturbate In My Underpants Whilst Killing Weird Douchebags I Hate With My Sex-starved Penis”

      John – I love ya man – mwah!

      Now I’m off to Fort Lauderdale to meet Mr Morrow.

      PS – Don’t ever read the news or buy books.

      • Naw,Tim, I haven’t read the news since my twenties. It hadn’t changed then, and hasn’t changed since. Top article last week: ‘300 killed in ISIS atrocity’. Lower article ‘Panda gives birth in China zoo’. Plus ca change….

    • Ay, Jon. You click on those headlines for professional reasons. To see why the posts work, list them in your list posts and analyze them for SBO. That’s why I read the dreck in the New York Times Best Seller lists. Just to see how those nematodes got away with it. Then I wash out my mouth. No way, do I buy their dreck. Nor would I buy anything from a blogger who told me in his headline ‘I’m a foul-mouthed low life. Aren’t you one too?’

      • Hey John,

        You said you’re an ad copywriter, right? I’ve studied copywriting and learned a lot about it by following the likes of Bob Bly, Joe Sugarman, Eugene Schwartz, Gary Halbert, Brian Keith Voiles and so many others.

        They used headlines like these from time to time. As did many others that came before them AND after them.

        In fact, there’s a whole lot of copywriters that use these type of headlines to generate interest.

        That’s why headlines like:

        – Five familiar skin troubles – which do you want to overcome?
        – Six types of Investors – which one are you in?

        And many others. But it all boils down to the target audience and really what type of benefit the headline is providing. You used that example, “I’m a foul-mouthed low life. Aren’t you one too?”

        I wouldn’t click that one either because there’s no benefit. There’s no intrigue or any reason to click.

        So while many people shy away from these types of headlines, IF it provides a benefit AND the content delivers on what the headline initially said … then it’s good in my book.

        – Andrew

    • I’ve taken courses from several of the people that wrote these headlines and learned a lot (thanks Jon).

      Sure, you probably couldn’t adapt them to a religious website. But remember. The purpose of a headline is to get a visitor to read the next sentence. And then the next.

      I loved these headlines. And I’ll study the hell out them because they work. Does that make me a pervert or a douchebag? Oh well.

      • Hey Bill,

        Thanks for the comment.

        You and me both. Sure, some headlines are extremely outrageous, but like you said, the point of the headline is to get a visitor to read the next sentence and so on.

        And even if you don’t necessarily like these headlines, we’re all entrepreneurs (or trying to be) so we should at least be studying them to figure out why they’re clickworthy and so damn popular.

        – Andrew

  20. Hey Kevin,

    I do believe some congratulations are in order first, great job landing a guest post here and what a post it is. I mean Jon is the king when it comes to headline creations but I have to tell you, this is a fabulous list. I too had to click through on a few of them out of curiosity of course and have loaded them up to read.

    Creating a great enticing headline is a work of genius and I envy those creative writers that can come up with them so easily. I refer to Jon’s headline hack PDF a lot but these are more of your eye catching curiosity biting ones that are sure to get click throughs if for no other reason then to see what the heck they’re saying.

    Really great share and wonderful post. Thank you so much for sharing these and I know it must have taken you forever to come up with this one. Bravo my friend.


    • Hi Adrienne,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I’m very thrilled that I managed to get a guest post on here. It took A Lot of hard work, but it’s paid of certainly.

      Jon is still the master at creating click-worthy headlines … but we couldn’t have 36 posts that were all Jon Morrow headlines, could we?

      You and me both regarding Jon’s headline hacks. Everytime I need to write or brainstorm a headline, I have that right there.

      – Andrew

  21. As a reader these are the types of headlines I avoid like the plague. Seriously, I detest gimmicky headlines right along with overblown promises that often go right along with them. As a writer and coach I’m serious about my craft and the quality of the information and advice I share. With all due respect, I’d rather have 100 readers that represent my target audience than 10,000 readers who blow through simply because they’re curious about a silly headline.

    • Marquita,

      I agree with you about gimmicky headlines and often don’t click either.

      But I get Andrew’s point about the psychology of the whole thing. When done correctly, with the target audience in mind, it can be very powerful in the right way.

      However, I think you made a great comment.


      • Hey Nathan,

        You’re right. When it’s done correctly, you can target the audience you want to target, AND get them to click too.

        – Andrew

    • Hi Marquita,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I agree that gimmicky click -bait headlines aren’t good, but how is a headline like,”How To Quit Your Job, Move To Paradise and Get Paid To Change The World” or “How A Single Guest Post May Have Gotten An Entire Site Penalized By Google” gimmicky?

      Obviously nobody is forcing you to click on these but I think that as long as the content delivers, then that’s what matters. The headline is just to raise curiosity.

      And I’m very serious about my craft as well. I take writing and blogging very seriously … and one of the things all bloggers know is that you have to create headlines that creates attention and intrigue. Wouldn’t you agree?

      And if you get 10K readers that blog through the content, then wouldn’t that then be on the content?

      – Andrew

    • I understand what you’re saying and agree with you to some degree, however, often a slightly gimmicky headline can hide quality content. I made a judgement about the book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” because of the headline and for a long time never bothered reading it. Then I did and I was blown away.

      In contrast, I was expecting lots from “How To Win Friends And Influence People” and I reckon I got through the first chapter before putting it away. I thought it was pure tripe.

      Takeaway; Headline can be misleading at either end of the spectrum.

      The fact is, it’s what most people make a judgement on so we need it to be enticing, and be backed up by the content.
      UpWorthy and Buzzfeed type headlines are in my opinion pure tripe, tabloid stuff, and are backed up by crappy content… in my opinion.


      • Hi Larry,

        Thanks for the comment.

        You’re right. A gimmicky headline CAN hide quality content. Which is why you don’t want to be too gimmicky nor use it as often. It loses its cache after a while and can be uneffective.

        Upworthy and Buzzfeed type of headlines won’t work for the majority of blog posts and our aim shouldn’t be to mimic them at all. Rather, study their structure and see their effectiveness — and possibly use that to craft our own headlines.

  22. Those tabloids and magazines do know how to ‘suck’ you in and is definitely a great source to emulate when it comes to creating ‘clever’ headlines. The hardest thing though is actually coming up with that headline. I do like some of the headline creator tools out there that help you do just that, such as the Upworthy Generator. Super useful. Love the headlines you put together here. Great share!

    • Hi Megan,

      Thanks for the comment.

      You’re right. Those tabloids do a great job in catching and grasping attention. And although I’m not suggesting that ALL of your headlines should be gimmicky or tabloid-esque … it’s great to practice to see how they grasp the attention span of their readers … and maybe we can learn from them to do the same.

      Have you ever tried CoSchedle’s Headline Analyzer? It’s a good tool worth checking out.

      – Andrew

  23. Andrew,
    Great collection of headlines! Personally, I struggle with headlines so this is an excellent resource for me. Looking at great examples does seem to help by opening up ideas and getting the ball rolling.

    • Hey Marc,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Headlines are a struggle for many people, I think. And I think, from this, I’ll start implementing the same regiment Jon had to go through with CopyBlogger. Hundreds of headlines.

      That practice will pay off and really open up the creative juices.

      – Andrew

    • Hi Carol,

      Thanks for the comment.

      These type of headlines are good, from time to time, but they can’t be overdone and over used too often.

      – Andrew

    • P.S. I just read that blog post you’re referring to. Really enjoyed it, actually.

      Outrageous headline but the content really backed it up.

  24. Hey Andrew,

    Excellent list of headlines! #3 caught me off guard and I literally lol!

    They are so important to the success of our content.

    I would definitely read most of these and are not all topics I am generally interested in.

    Thats the power of the headline at work!

    Excellent post Andrew!

    Take care man!

    • Hey Steven,

      Thanks for the comment.

      #3 really catches A LOT of people off guard lol.

      But the overall point is, we have to be really serious about our headlines. If we want out content to shine, we have to make sure our headlines attracts people to read it.

      “I would definitely read most of these and are not all topics I am generally interested in.” Me too. Goes to show how powerful they really are.

      – Andrew

  25. In reading the comments, it sounds like your post is somewhat controversial. I get your point that you need to attract attention but for my taste, I would like to strive for being outrageous without being offensive. My favorite blog post headline is: “Why Your Blog Doesn’t Stand a Chance in Hell of Succeeding.” I think this is a good example of an attention-getter that is outrageous by the standards of your post, but also is not offensive. As several commenters said, the point is to get engagement and responsive subscribers from your target market that can turn into buyers, right?

    • Hi Jeannette,

      Thanks for the comment.

      You’re right. You don’t have to be offensive at all to be outrageous. Let me not confuse that. And that’s not what I’m saying to do.

      Just get attention. Stand out. Make your headline something that they’ll remember and would want to click on no matter what.

      Your goal IS to get engaging and responsive customers all the time. And get them to eventually be buyers. But you have to catch their attention first. You have to write blog posts that over deliver and headlines that captivates them.

      – Andrew

  26. Hey Andrew,

    Great roundup of some outrageous headlines. I’m pleased to tell you that I’ve checked out each one now and come up with my next headline:
    “How To Read 36 Outrageous Posts in 5 minutes and Write a Meaningful Comment!”

    Seriously, there’s plenty to check out there, but I liked your link story from the grocery store. Yep, there’s always one with the small change, right!
    Headlines are so important and I often refer to Jon’s Cheatsheet when I need some inspiration. Now I have another awesome resource.

    Well done Andrew. Have a great weekend!
    – David

    • Hi David,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Haha. Go for it.

      The grocery store always happens. Even if we try to avoid it, there’s always something there that catches our eye, isn’t there? And we HAVE to blame that person that’s paying with change lol.

      Jon’s cheat sheet (Headline Hacks) is awesome and I refer to it all the time … along with some other headlines I keep in my collection of headline swipe files.

      – Andrew

  27. Hi Andrew,

    What a fantastic article!!! I often play with titles and then over think them. Occasionally I hit a good one and other times I choose to play it safe. Now you really have me thinking!

    So, maybe I’m going to shake it up a bit now and think about being a bit more over dramatic for the sake of emphasis.

    You are so right about those grocery store tabloids. We all know they are mostly made up but they sure do get your attention.

    Have a great end to your week Andrew!

    ~ Don Purdum

    • Hey Don,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I play with titles as well, but sometimes I just go with the 1st or 3rd title I came up with. And that;s no good … and it’s completely my fault. Headlines are the main things that readers use to judge if they want to read a post or not.

      Can’t afford to mess that opportunity up. So it’s best to practice as much as possible.

      Everyone has a grocery store story lol. It’s probably going to happen to me when I do some shopping on the weekend. I’l try to avoid it, but I’m 80% sure they’ll get my attention.

      – Andrew

  28. Hi Andrew,
    What a fantastic post! 🙂
    Yes, an outrageous headline will do the trick indeed! 🙂
    You brought out some amazing headlines and people! 🙂
    Well, I too dropped into some of the pages you mentioned here.
    Oh My… what an eye capturing H lines!!! LOL
    Yes, I am sure such lines will catch anybodies attention within no time,
    This post helped me to think on and on….
    Thanks for sharing and for the intimation.
    Keep writing
    Congrats for bagging a place at this wonderful place,
    Keep it up my friend
    Keep sharing
    Best Regards
    ~ Phil

    • Hey Philip,

      Thanks for the comment. Glad you enjoyed the post as well.

      Yea, it took a while to narrow down these specific headlines, but I think the ones that were here, represented outrageousness very well.

      – Andrew

  29. Tons of killer headlines. I had to click on a few of them. Can’t wait to model them and try a few out.

    Found the insights helpful.

    Great post.

    • Hey Jason,

      Thanks for the comment. Glad you enjoyed the post.

      Which ones did you like the most that you want to model and emulate?

      – Andrew

  30. Hi Andrew,

    This post is amazing. I always am trying to think of incredible headlines and I’m getting a bit better at it, but this made me think outside the box and I think that is key. This immediately sent my brain into a spin to think of outrageous headlines that could draw and attract people to my blog. This is definitely an eye-opener and since I’ve been working on it anyway, it re-enforced that I’m doing the right thing in pepping up my headlines. Now I know I have to get even wilder. 🙂

    Thanks for a great post.


    p.s. I did click on quite a few of them myself. Great job.

    • Hi Barbara,

      Thanks for the comment. Glad you enjoyed the post.

      Outside of the box thinking is very key. And if you think about it, many readers are getting real tired of the generic, plain headlines. There’s no pizzazz to them.

      But the thing with outrageous headlines is that you don’t want to over-do them. They’re perfectly fine maybe once every 5 – 6 posts, but certainly not every post.

      Lol get even wilder, Barbara. Do you use any analysis tool to evaluate how well your headlines are? Or what needs work?

      – Andrew

  31. Hello Andrew, Thanks for the invite, loved this round up of Outrageous Headlines! This is one of the hardest things about blogging for me, Yepers coming up with that AWESOME! ENTICING! OUTRAGEOUS! HEADLINE!

    Thanks for sharing.. Chery :))

  32. Definitely saving to my bookmarks!

    When I read examples like these, my title ideas are much better.
    It’s interesting how observing other things inspire us.

    For instance, when I was creating my first e-book where I used lots of psychology in order to change mindset to entrepreneurial thinking.

    Anyway, it has tended to be boring. But after reading some articles from the best writers/bloggers included Jon and Glen, I “stole” their style and wrote much better e-book with better readability.

    Andrew, thank you for your article and inspiration! 🙂

    • Thanks for the comment, Tony. Appreciate it.

      Observing other definitely helps a person get better. But it’s observation and practice that really makes it go well.

      When you were writing that eBook … were you writing in a conversational style? Or technical terms and style?

      – Andrew

      • Yes, practice. I’m doing it before I start writing. Because I am in so-called writer’s mode, but it doesn’t last for a long time.
        You probably know that psychology experiment. Students were watching a document about pensioners and after watching 10min.(I don’t know exact number) of it, they went for a walk and they were walking slower than normally.

        Most of the times, I try to use “you” and “I” words in order to create something like a conversation with them. Very helpful is to imagine that you are on the stage and delivering a speech.

        I know it from the school. As you said, technical terms are boring and people don’t remember very much from it.

      • Hey Tony,

        I use to write in a technical term and style probably 8 – 9 months ago. But I switched my style around and rather than talking to an audience, I imagined I was talking to just ONE person.

        And because I would be talking to one person, I would be more in-tuned with getting my message across and talking to them alone –rather than everyone all at once.

        It takes practice definitely. There are times I had to go back and modify it so I would be talking to that one person.

        – Andrew

      • Do you think that imaging talking to one person is better than to audience? I can give it a try.

        I’ve checked you blog and it’s great. Another blog to follow in my list. Keep doing great work!

        Yes practice, but as a newbie in the blogosphere, I try to copy others(I don’t mean content, but their style). If they are successful with 1 technique, I copy their “winning formula” and put it into practice!

  33. Andrew,

    Thanks for this great list of top headlines. I’m bookmarking it for future reference.

    “5 Ways Stores Use Science to Trick You Into Buying Crap” attracted me right away because I both love science and want to know how I can use it in my every day activities. If stores can use these “tricks,” can I? That’s what that headline makes me want to know immediately.

    There were others I had to “open in another window” too!

    Great post, not just for headline writers, but for intelligent readers of interesting articles, which nearly all bloggers are!


    • Hi Diedre,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Oh yea, that headline is really grabs the eyes. And when I read the story, I was thinking how certain stores I frequent have their things set up, and it’s pretty much the same that this post was talking about.

      And the truth is, I was lured into buying more because of that. But definitely, if stores can do it, anyone can really.

      Glad you enjoyed the post. And I have no doubts that you can use those tricks as well.

      – Andrew

    • Hey Nadia,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I’m sure all of BBT and myself as well would love it if you shared it with your students.

      Were you planning to write an article about it to just share with them directly?

      – Andrew

    • Hi Tim,

      Thanks for the comment. And sorry to hear about that. Seems like another post may be in order, right?

  34. Hi, Andrew.

    First of all, congratulations on your guest post.

    The psychology behind all of this is very powerful, especially when the headlines have a personal angle.

    However, I do sympathise with a comment that Marquita made earlier. There are some websites that are famous only for sucking people in with headlines, only to disappoint. I tend not to click on those.

    But when it’s done correctly with the intention of truly helping the reader, it’s a great technique.

    Thanks for sharing.


    • Hi Nathan,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I know of the sites you talk about and I’d advice bloggers not to follow that method as well IF they’re not going to deliver on the content. You have to deliver on the content IF you’re writing an enticing headline to draw people in.

      I don’t think either of Jon’s headlines here, or Neil’s headlines here under-delivered on the content. Do you?

      But I do agree that some people get click-bait happy. And that’s wrong.

      – Andrew

  35. Whats up Andrew

    Congrats on making it to BBT……I’m jealous lol…
    no, really nice work on the post. I just found a ton of stuff to put in the to read pile.

    And, i will have to look you up.


    • Hi Jason,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Thanks you for the congrats. It took me a while to get here, but I finally got here. I just hope I’m blessed with the opportunity to one day come back. It’s been a really fun experience.

      That read pile will be full of nothing but fun. And that’s the thing. If you’re going to write these type of headlines, depending on your niche, you have to deliver on the content as well.

      – Andrew

  36. Here’s the scene. You’re in line to check out, and the person ahead of you decides to pay for their groceries with nothing but small change.


    As you wait patiently, your eyes wander across to the tabloids and magazines in the rack by the counter and suddenly – bam!

    A headline leaps out at you.

    You know the type. One that makes you think – WTF?

    Admit it. The urge to pick up the magazine and turn the page is almost impossible to resist.

    Even though you never normally read those magazines. Even though you know you’re being manipulated.

    Hey Andrew, I don’t just peek inside I buy the magazine.
    I look around first to see if there is anyone I know, before I quickly pick it up and toss in my cart and anxiously wait……I’m sure a few people have seen me buy those magazines and wondered why I’am doing it. “Sighs”- The headline hacked my brain.

    Good post,

    • Hi Ann,

      Thanks for the comment.

      LOL they get you good then. You actually buy them.

      But that’s the thing, you’re NOT alone on that. A LOT of people buy those magazines. LMAO at “I look around first to see if there is anyone I know, before I quickly pick it up and toss in my cart and anxiously wait”

      Do you honestly do that? That’s awesome.

      – Andrew

  37. My favorite was the ugly bady …..
    a father of two beautiful kids. I know the feeling all to well, of the terror that other people may think my kids are ugly. Which i know better, look at their dad.

    Keep up the great work

    • Hey Jason,

      Yea, the one about the ugly baby is powerful.

      Many people do feel that anxiety when their child is born … they hope their baby end up looking beautiful.

      ” I know the feeling all to well, of the terror that other people may think my kids are ugly. Which i know better, look at their dad.” Lol great stuff. That’s an awesome line.

      – Andrew

  38. Nice collection of headlines Andrew. I see you have a great deal of comments here too. Great topic and it’s a good way to bring out the best of the best!!


    • Thanks so much, Ms. ileane. I appreciate you taking time to stop by here.

      Yes, there is a lot of comments here, but like you said, it’s a great topic.

      Hope you have an awesome rest of the week.

      – Andrew

  39. Andrew,

    When it comes to headlines, it is our “first commandment” It has to be eye catching and congruent to the content. You have given such wonderful examples – some people I know and some I would love to connect with.
    Great job!

    • Hey Donna,

      Thanks for the comment and for stopping by.

      Headlines are and should be the first commandment. That’s why it’s often said being the most important part of copywriting, sales letters and blogging.

      Thanks again, Donna.

      – Andrew

  40. What a great list of headlines Andrew. I can only imagine how much time it took you to come up with this list.

    As I started reading through each of these, I found myself clicking on a number of these links to check out what in the world some of these posts were talking about. An hour later, here I am leaving my comment. Oh well, I didn’t have anything else to do tonight. Thanks for that.

    Great post as always Andrew.


    • Hey Craig,

      Thanks for the comment.

      It took a lonnnnnnnnnng time to come up with this list. There were more, but they weren’t outrageous enough to get onto here.

      Lol that’s the thing about headlines like these, once they catch your interest, you’re almost forced to click. Next thing you know, a couple hours passed.

      – Andrew

  41. These headlines are awesome as long as there is good content behind them. More than anything I hate clickbait that takes you to a website full of ads that you need to click the arrow for every single item on the list. I’m a little more wary of “top ten” links after coming across them too many times.

    • Hey Dandy,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Yep, you’re right.

      Good content has to support any outrageous headlines a person comes up with. The last thing you want is to create a click-worthy headline, and then have content that’s well below mediocre.

      – Andrew

  42. Hi Andrew,

    Awesome post indeed needed for the bloggers, I’m speechless after reading your great post. Crafting a post with attractive headline would attract huge eyeballs.

    I’m wondering about your great efforts in consolidating these posts at a grand blog. I can recognize your blogging passion and it’s inspiring me to blog better.

    I aware of few posts which you’ve gathered here and I enjoyed the post “Marriage isn’t for you”, even I’ve linked that post in my previous post “How to your every post that go viral?”

    I’ll have a look at the awesome posts with great headlines when I get time. I really enjoyed reading your post and now sharing this amazing post on my social network.

    Keep your great work, have a happy weekend!

    • Hi Nirmala,

      Thanks for the comment.

      It did take a long time to collect these headlines, but it was a fun process as well. It exposed me to some blogs I never heard of before and started following because of this.

      Thanks for the comment.

      – Andrew

  43. Hi Andrew,

    Hahaha..I can’t stop myself to laugh when reading these headlines. Indeed, these headlines really outrageous and very interesting! 🙂

    Although outrageous, but indeed, these headlines are very capable to attract the readers to read the contents as a whole. That happened to me. I also cannot stop myself to click on some headlines contained in this list.

    I am grateful to you for sharing this list, Andrew. It is a great list! 🙂
    I think this post could be a reference for me when creating my own headlines. Thanks for that!

    You did a great job, Andrew!
    Keep up the good work and enjoy your weekend!


    • Hey Nanda,

      Thanks for the comment. Glad you enjoyed the post.

      Some of these are truly laugh out loud, right? But more importantly, they just grab your eyeballs and makes you want to find out more, don’t they?

      Thanks for the comment.

      – Andrew

  44. Hey Andrew,

    Congratulations on getting a guest spot here on BBT. This is definitely a feat in itself and you really deserve this! I really like your style of writing!

    One thing about headlines, it takes me it seems forever to come up with one. I can spend an entire day trying to come up with a great headline. These headlines you listed definitely conjures up different emotions that make you want to click on them.

    I see a lot of oxymorons, controversial, metaphors and headlines that just make you blush. But they all stirs up our curiosity to see what they’re all about! And that’s the best part of crafting these engaging headlines!

    Thanks for sharing Andrew! You have a great weekend!

    • Hey Sherman,

      Thanks for the comment. Glad you enjoyed the post.

      Headlines are really crazy and deserves a lot of time being spent on them. That’s for sure. Anyone that says they can crank out a “perfect” headline in one go, isn’t doing a good job.

      Not even world-renown copywriters can have that luck.

      “I see a lot of oxymorons, controversial, metaphors and headlines that just make you blush. ” Very true. But the key to remember is, you DON’T want to use these type of headlines often. They’ll lose their allure fast.

      Once in a while is perfectly fine though.

      – Andrew

  45. Hi Andrew

    So great to see you here and the post is itself a compendium of great headlines.
    The biggest quality of any artwork is its intrinsic simplicity that presses the person to think “oh how simple is it; I can also create like this”.

    But once he tries to create like it then he comes to know how difficult it is to create the simple and unforgettable things.

    Nowadays a huge number of great contents are being created and shared everywhere so one of the powerful edges to outperform others is to create an attractive headline to bring the readers on the post and hold them with the power of contents.

    Thanks a lot for sharing such a wonderful post.

    • Hey Mi,

      Thanks for the comment.

      That’s the thing. Many people may see some one else do it and think they can easily create it like that, but then it’s nothing like that at all. It’s worse.

      This especially goes for headlines which needs a lot of work, consistently.

      – Andrew

  46. Hello Andrew, Thanks for your great great great Article. Really just amazing. By reading your this article just learn the killers points. I am going to apply these for my own Blog headline. Will share with you my feedback. Thanks again for sharing such a great post.


  47. Hey Andrew

    What a pleasure to see you here on Boost Blog Traffic. Congrats!

    Great selection of headlines – a few classics plus quite a few I didn’t know yet. Excellent research!

    • Hey Henneke,

      Thanks for stopping by and for commenting. It’s a huge honor to be here on BBT and I’m thrilled it worked out so well.

      Thanks for the comment.

      – Andrew

  48. Hey Andrew!

    That was an awesome list of eye catching titles. Part of the challenge with titles nowadays is not so much making them easy to search but making them memorable. I always find thinking about the title easier at the end of the writing and I feel that title writing should be taken as seriously as the rest of the process. It does hurt when you’ve worked hard on a long rip-roaring post, only to see it go down in flames, without a fair look. Often it comes down to simple things in a crowded market when trying to attract audience.

    • Hey Jackson,

      Thanks for the comment.

      That’s correct, part of it is making it memorable … whether they’re outrageous or not. But if people have been working on a post that flops, mainly because if the title, why can’t they test the same post with a different title. And republish it?

      – Andrew

  49. Oh my god so many excellent examples in one post!
    I had to open at least 75% of the links just because of the WTF factor which proves your point perfectly.
    Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go find out what masturbating your your money even means.

    • Thanks Aurelie,

      I appreciate the comment.

      Just 75% were opened? I was hoping for all … oh well, I’ll take that percentage lol.

      Yes, find out what that means lol.

      – Andrew

  50. Great job on this, Andrew. Headlines do make a massive difference, especially with all the content out there and even some popular bloggers could improve in this area. It’s something that I am focusing on more even now and it’s certainly one of the things that makes Boost Blog Traffic stand out from the other blogs out there!

    • Hey Brian,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Headlines are super important and something that needs to be worked on constantly. Especially for posts that we put out.

      I don’t think a lot of people spend as much time on headlines as they should … me included. But like you said, BBT stands out primarily because their click-worthy headlines that captures attention. We should all do the same.

      – Andrew

  51. WOW Andrew, you grabbed me kicking and screaming through to the end of the post (see what I did there!) This was a long and provocative post. I didn’t want to spend that much time reading (lots of tasks to finish) but I couldn’t avert my eyes…sort of like a car accident. You don’t want to stare at other people’s misfortune but the mixture of fear, curiosity, and sympathy is too much to resist!

    To say that these posts were outrageous was almost an understatement. You did a fantastic job of drawing the reader in and keeping their attention. Could you have done a shorter post like a top 10?


    Would it have been as intriguing with something for almost everyone?

    Probably not.

    I really appreciated that you took the time to explain the nuances of why these outrageous headlines worked in capturing your attention, I think this provides a great lesson to both new and experienced bloggers alike…the value of mixing it up to see what gets you results!

    I’m not sure I should say thank you though because I’ll probably be up all night reading 36 blog posts as a result of this article…just kidding, thank you for the great read!

    Jon, I’ll definitely try to frequent and comment on your blog more often…you sure know how to engage your readers!



    • Hey Andrea,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Sorry for taking you away from your tasks, but that’s what captivating, eye-grabbing headlines do sometimes. They make us want to read more and find out the whole story behind the headline.

      Could have done the traditional 10 but that wouldn’t have been as effective.

      Thanks again for the comment.

      – Andrew

  52. Hi Andrew!

    Couldn’t resist opening a lot of these so it just goes to show how right you are. Your analysis on each of them was spot on.

    Funny story, the first article to gain a lot of attention on my site was called “This One Sentence Will Triple Your Traffic.” As you can imagine, it was talking about headlines. My site wasn’t very popular at that time but the curiosity that headline triggered caused it to be one of the most popular posts ever to be published on my site.

    See you over on your site soon!
    – James

    • Hey James,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Your story is interesting and goes to show you how effective headlines really are. With that headline, you basically left them with a cliff-hanger that FORCED them to click to find out what that one sentence is.

      Great job with that.

      – Andrew

  53. Hi, Andrew, first off congratulations on getting the guest post gig you were after.

    Great examples of outrageous titles, so many got me laughing. I can’t believe how many tabs I’ve opened up and saved for later.

    I’ve saved the list to refer to later. I don’t think these are examples that you can re-use easily, especially some of those words on a business blog. But the content is as good as the title. The important thing is to understand why they’re outrageous – and your analysis is perfect.

    I have to say I agree completely with your advice to use the technique sparingly, otherwise they’re not going to stand out. But once in a while is very refreshing.

    Good work!

    • Hey Donald,

      Thanks for the comment. And thank you.

      That’s the thing about these headlines, they’ll force you to want to know what they’re all about. But you can’t use them all the time.

      – Andrew

  54. Andrew your guest post certainly is grabbing the attention it deserves. You picked some great eye catching headlines to grab our attention. I had to open a few of them so yes they worked for me and I probably would have opened them all except today I am time poor. I am getting better with my headlines. At times it is very hard to turn a cupcake into a mountainous cake that people want to dive into! Thanks for your insight!

  55. Hi Andrew,
    You just gave me a list of 36 articles that I am feeling compelled to read!

    The headline is the key – but the balancing act of writing for search engines and for real people is like walking a tightrope.

    I am still working to get it right. 🙂

    • Hi Neena,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Glad you enjoyed the post and yes, the headline is very key. I wish more people would see it’s importance and pay more attention to it.

      – Andrew

  56. I`ve just wrote an article about how headlines are important for getting some SE traffic. It is not good as this one but hey, I`m still learning.

    I think it is all about psychology of human thinking, if your headline offer something useful for him, he will come and visit your post! “Top 10..” kind of stuff is a champ!

    Thank you for sharing this post!

    Miralem A.

    • Hi Miralem,

      Thanks for the comment.

      You’re right, if you offer some type of benefit, then people will flock to read that post. It’s just a matter of making it beneficial enough.

      – Andrew

  57. Great post, Andrew! I had to laugh at some of the headlines you included. Because I’m a part of the literary world already, however, I already knew James Chartrand is a woman. 😉

    I have also run across a few of the other posts you mentioned (I follow Neil Patel and Jon Morrow) but I was a bit surprised at the “unethical” headline.

    It’s amazing how one particular word will cause others to immediately want to know what the article is about, isn’t it? 😉

    I think that is one of the reasons I love writing and editing so much!

    There is power in words! And if you can word well, you’ve got it made.

    • Hi Lorraine,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Yea the James Chartrand one took me by surprise when I first read it. But those type of surprises in headlines is what works. And it can train us to get better at writing them.

      – Andrew

  58. Hi Andrew,

    What a great list of headlines! You have done great work bu putting these all together into one place. Anyone can use this resource to create killer headlines.

    I have already opened some of thems into my browser to check what they are talking.
    You are absolutely rights, if our post headlines don’t caught anyone attention, it is not worth to going with this.

    I have bookmarked this post to create attention grabbing headlines in future.


  59. Awesome Post Andrew!

    Wouldn’t expect anything less with your content. Always a good read. 🙂

    Love the examples, those are surely some powerful examples that we can all learn from.

    Totally agree that we should be outrageous. Though, think most people are afraid of being outrageous? Maybe they think it will be too much and have the opposite effect? Don’t know if every one is brave enough?

    I have a couple binders, my swipe files, by my desk, and it looks like I have a couple more pages to add. Actually one is full of tabloid headlines. Think I need to start using them for inspiration huh?

    Thank you!

  60. Hey Andrew

    You got me. I clicked through to many of the articles you mentioned just to see what they were all about. I enjoyed your commentary on each one too – very insightful!

    It’s good to keep learning what works and what doesn’t. So long as you can write something with substance around these types of headlines, they’re always going to work.

    • Hey Tim,

      Thanks for the comment.

      I thought the commentary for each was important because I wanted to set the scene up as to why these headlines were important and clickable.

      But, while headlines like these are good, you have to always remember to make sure your post it on the same level.

      – Andrew

  61. I loved this post, Andrew! It reminds me of a post I read on your blog about how you noticed an increase in your results once you loosened up a little and started writing more freely. I really think I could learn something from this. I have a fear of coming across unprofessionally, so I tend to stay confined within what I know is safe ground for all my readers. Probably something to work on. 🙂

    • Hey Brant,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Glad you enjoyed the post. “I have a fear of coming across unprofessionally, so I tend to stay confined within what I know is safe ground for all my readers.”

      Nothing wrong with that. But there’s also nothing wrong with taking that chance once in a while too.

      – Andrew

  62. Bit late to the party, but this is a great look at some interesting techniques on headlines that I will definitely be using to my advantage 🙂

    Absolutely love the headline of number 33 by Bethany – actually had me laughing (and, more importantly, clicking).

    Gonna have to keep this comment short and sweet, I now have an army of clickbaiters to prepare.

    All the best,

    Luke Jordan

    • Hey Luke,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Yea, that headline Bethany said is really true and click-worthy. I don’t have kids, but I’m sure those thoughts may possibly run through my mind. And I would definitely click it to read more.

      Onward with those click-baiters lol.

      – Andrew

  63. Hey Andrew,
    It’s an awesome post.

    My Outrageous headline for a post will be:

    “How Andrew Warner’s One Huge post hung my Google Chrome Browser like a Crazy Madman” 🙂
    I ended up clicking all of the links literrally..

    Thanks for this post..

    • Hey Vinayak,

      Thanks for the comment.

      Just proves how powerful these type of headlines are if you ended up clicking ALL of them. But like a few people pointed out, if you’re using this type of headline, then make sure your content backs it up.

      – Andrew

    • Thanks Larry,

      Yea, it took a while to respond to all these comments.But it’s worth it — I get to hear different perspectives and can hopefully network with some of these people in the future.

      – Andrew

  64. Hahah some of these headlines got me peeing my pants! Awesome post !

    Guess what I literately clicked on all of the headlines. They made me way to curious. Big lesson learned from this one.

    Keep up the great work,


  65. Awesome article Andrew! All these titles are borderline crazy ones, and it signifies that anything that tickles the curiosity of the reader will get clicked on, irrespective of the relevance of the content in their lives. We need to make sure that after that there is sufficient substance to deliver something of value to the readers.

  66. I think it’s super important to remember that no matter how compelling or outrageous the headline is, the content needs to deliver on the headline. There’s some popular sites that are crafting these kinds of headlines and not delivering. Click bait is running amok.


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