O'Reilly logo

The Bloomberg Way: A Guide for Reporters and Editors, 13th Edition by Matthew Winkler, Jennifer Sondag

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Chapter 7Headlines

Successful headlines get inside the minds of readers and have one or more of these five elements:

  1. Surprise
  2. What’s at Stake
  3. Names That Make News
  4. Conflict
  5. Conflict Resolution

Every well-reported story has these elements, so it makes sense that a successful headline delivers the essence of the surprise. The more surprising the combination of words, especially the first four, the easier it is for readers to recognize news. When readers see a combination of words they can’t remember seeing before, they’re more willing to be enticed. A headline with none of these elements risks having the fewest readers.

Writing headlines must be as much an exercise of skill and judgment as any four-paragraph lead. The best are graceful, precise ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required