Are They Worth The Effort?

One of the hardest parts of writing an article may be figuring out the title. Many writers have no trouble focusing on a core point and writing several hundred words to support a logical conclusion. What makes title creation particularly tricky is condensing intricate ideas into a single sentence. With AI and technology advancing software developers are currently working on headline generation tools to create titles that are attention grabbing. These tools can range from the simple to the complex in how they create material. Here is a brief overview of one such tool and an analysis of the content it produces.

Title Generations

For the purposes of this article, I used the general term ‘inbound marketing’ and this title generating website. This would be considered a basic example of such a tool and uses basic algorithms and common title formatting based around specific topics. This is by far the most common example you’ll currently encounter as more advanced AI systems are still somewhat in their testing phase. Granted this is a relatively simple title generator designed to attract attention i.e. ‘clickbait’ but it does serve as an example of the general concept. That being said there are more advanced tools out there to make use of however, they require a good deal of setup and a degree of programming skill to configure.

Reviewing The Results

Here are four titles I generated from the above-mentioned website tool. These results used inbound marketing as the base term and while numerous titles were generated here are the four that stood out for both good and bad reasons.

Good Examples

  • Believing These 10 Myths About Inbound Marketing Keeps You From Growing: this is a really good title in that it addresses a real problem and also makes the reader curious. The reader will wonder if they believe in one of these 10 myths and will want to find out.
  • What Zombies Can Teach You About Inbound Marketing: humor can be a tough sell. But a bit of quirkiness can be useful. This title plays on current popular culture, TV, and movies. A humorous title is a good attention grabber if done right and you can draw parallels between classic movie zombies and a bad marketing plan both are slow, easily avoided, and ineffective.

Bad Examples

  • Wondering How To Make Your Inbound Marketing Rock? Read This!: while certainly not the worst title ever used this one falls into a common trap of overused cliches. While cliches are not necessarily bad popular ones tend to get overused by a multitude of people resulting in the words losing all meaning.
  • Here’s A Quick Way To Solve Inbound Marketing Problems: you want your titles to be direct but not too exact or inflexible. The problem with this title is it implies an easy one size fits all solution to a broader issue. A title should say what an article is about not necessarily what you want the reader to do.

Final Thoughts

As the above shows, title generators are quite useful but still not perfect and still do not replace human creativity. That being said they are a quick starting point for title creation and can even serve as a way to break writer’s block. As AI implementation improves title generation will naturally improve with it allowing generated titles to be more precise and words weighted on several different types of criteria. An example of a work in progress you can see right now is this website which was written entirely through the use of a Recurrent Neural Network.