Viral Headlines: Why They Went Viral and How They Can Inspire You

Team Pepper
Posted on 29/09/216 min read
Viral Headlines: Why They Went Viral and How They Can Inspire You

Table of Contents 

  • The Role of a Good Headline
  • What Makes a Viral Headline?
  • Why Do People Share Content?
  • Types of Viral Headlines (With Examples)
  • Key Takeaways 
  • Conclusion 
  • FAQs 

What is the first thing you think of when creating content? What is your first significant focus? What is that one line, one sentence that gives your entire content a holistic view? What makes you interested in reading a particular article? How do you think bloggers, publishers, and marketers are attracting attention to drive traffic, increase engagement on the website, gain more from advertisement, and make money? 

Well, the answer to the above questions is “headlines.” They are the key tactic to make people interested enough in your content to share it with more people on the Internet. Today, content creators need to boost clicks on their content since fewer clicks lead to less traffic and lower profits. Thus, they have to focus on how to get more eyeballs on their content, keep a tight hold on the curiosity gap, and ensure that people keep clicking on their content. All this helps build a loyal audience that will engage with the content and keep the revenue coming. 

The Role of a Good Headline

Writing great headlines is a critical process because the headline has the power to create an impression on your prospective reader. Almost 80% of people click on your content because of an eye-catching headline. A good headline is the epitome of good content. So make sure you have a perfect one! 

However, what do you think makes headlines go viral? How to write a viral headline and boost conversion rates and attract the audience through your powerful headlines? 

Let’s take a look.

What Makes a Viral Headline?

The six factors that can help you create the best headlines that can go viral are below. 

  1. Trending topics are key to a viral headline. 
  2. SEO-rich content will help you reach your audience.
  3. Share content through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more.
  4. Advertise your content through collaborations with a celebrity or influencer.
  5. Characters on your headline will keep your headline crisp and clear. 
  6. Voice search optimization will help search for the latest trends through smartphones.

These factors help make a viral headline and boost your conversion rates with high traffic on your website. However, in the midst of all this, one question that is still unclear is why people share content? What do they get from it? Of course, it helps them build relationships, but what’s more? Let’s understand more. 

Why Do People Share Content?

One of the primary reasons people share content is that it reflects who they are, the kind of ideology they support, and the kind of person they want to be. For example, if you’re growing your business, you will search for things that match your goal and share the same on your social media. This action reflects your interests and focus. 

Similarly, if somebody is searching for how to come up with unique and good headlines and make them successful, they will be reading this blog. People share content based on what they intend to do with that piece of information, whether they want to share something about a particular subject, want to learn more, or do this to express themselves to the people around them.

The first thing that impresses us when sharing content is the “headline.” This is what people see first and are attracted to. After seeing the headline, they choose whether or not to open the shared post. This is what makes a post go viral. 

Now, let’s look at the types of headlines and headline ideas that have the capability of going viral and bringing in more business for you. 

Types of Viral Headlines (With Examples)

There are five basic types of headlines that are most likely to go viral. 

1. Clickbait headlines

“Curiosity killed the cat!” Have you ever heard of this phrase? This is what a clickbait headline is all about. It coaxes you to know more about what is going on, making you curious. Every headline you see on Facebook that makes you want to click on it and see the post is bait. 

What’s the difference between a clickbait and a non-clickbait headline? Research shows that clickbait headlines tend to have more dependencies than non-clickbait headlines.  


A clickbait headline teases you with half the information. It intrigues you to find out more or grab more details by clicking on the link. At times, clickbait headlines can be misleading, and thus, content creators and marketers must use them carefully while maintaining customers’ trust. 

Examples of clickbait headlines that went viral




All the above good headline examples have one thing in common: they are meant to give only half the information. Many marketers also use this technique to increase open rates in their email subject lines. 

2. Emotional headlines

An emotional heading includes persuasive words that touch upon the readers’ emotions and forces them to click on the link and read it. 


An emotional headline includes a marketer or blogger trying to leverage your emotions to make you click on a particular headline to bring in more business.

Examples of emotional headings. 



The examples mentioned above are related to worry, encouragement and courage. They will help the reader become more confident and be a better writer, business, and more. This is one of the best viral headline ideas ever.

More about emotional headlines 

Emotional headlines include some kind of infectious agents that are directly related to the mood of the article and their effect on the dynamic balance of the reader. These infectious agents include:

  • Joy
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Fear 
  • Awe

3. List headlines

Who doesn’t like to find everything in one place? List-based articles help you find just that, and thus they are one of the most used and great headlines worldwide.


In this, the writer lists what they find valuable about a specific topic. 

Examples showing how marketers and publishers make eye-catchy list-based headlines:



These headlines are trendy, add value to the reader’s life, and attract them to read further about a specific topic.

4. Trending headlines

These headlines are exactly what you expect; they are based on trending topics worldwide. They give a significant push to traffic and engage the audience on your website. However, they are time-bound.

This headline idea will get you traffic and engagement on your website till the topic is active. As soon as it gets old or irrelevant, the attention goes down.

Some examples include



The examples listed above were relevant for a short period. Such headlines are great to enjoy the attention as long as the topic is hot, which is also why they went viral.  You can further use Google Trends to search for keywords and long-tail keywords. Trending headlines will help you engage more audience, rank the website better and bring more traffic to your website.

5. How-to posts

Headlines belonging to this type indicate teachings or the process to achieve a goal or desired outcome. There is another similar category called “question posts.” These two types of headline ideas include questions in their headlines.

Some common examples for how-to post headlines are:



So how-to posts and question headlines help us reach our audience by answering their queries and solving their problems. People are more prone to click on this kind of content. That is why you will find many good headlines that end with question marks.

Since most people try to find answers to their questions on mobile phones via voice search, they usually try searching by asking a question to Google. Marketers are picking up on this trend and going viral with their content like that. 

Key Takeaways 

  • Find solutions with your headline
  • Using the word “free” will help attract audiences
  • Making comparisons in your headline will help you reach your potential customer.
  • Make your headline match your advertisement, and you can get a 115% increase in conversion.
  • Using testimonial style in your headline is a bit unconventional but will boost your conversion rate. 
  • Numbers in your headline can work wonders and generate 36% more likes. 
  • Lastly, try to create great headlines fast.


Now that you know how viral headlines get to where they are, we are sure you will try to implement the above tips. Remember to ensure that you know your audience and do your research first. You don’t want to create a furor and go viral over the wrong thing! 


1. What is a catchy headline?

An eye-catching headline is the one that sets the ground for your upcoming content. It is an integral part of your ad copy. If you get the customer hooked from the very beginning, there is a good chance that they might take up your call to action.

2. How to make a viral headline?

– Be brief, direct, simple. 
– Emphasize your greatest perk 
– Excite your audience with announcements 
– Ask questions in the headline 
– Tell your audience something they don’t know
– Tell your audience what/how to do

3. What is a headline example? — Your Virtual Content Assistant.

4. How do you write a strong headline?

– The headline should be unique.
– To-the-point and specific 
– Try inculcating FOMO 
– Provide a key takeaway 
– You can use adjectives, facts, emotional triggers

5. What are some exciting titles?

– Debunking 20 myths about content writing you probably still believe 
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– Don’t miss out on these 10 new-age tools 
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