Guest Contributor

How to Write Captivating Headlines to Recruit Volunteers

By | Nicole Garrison | Content strategist

Additional help for your nonprofit is always welcome. However, you first need to attract the attention of potential volunteers.

Did you know that 80% of people will read the headline, but only 20% of people read the entire post?

That is why headlines are important. They are in charge of making the first impression.

People scroll through an endless number of headlines, pictures, and videos throughout the day. A large number of information people consume present competition for your content. With the right headline, you’ll be able to stop people’s wandering eyes and evoke curiosity.

With attention-grabbing headlines, people would want to know more. Once the headline has drawn them in, you can win over potential volunteers with meaningful content. If you want to write a captivating headline, the following tips will help you achieve that goal.

Highlight the Benefits

Potential volunteers should know what kind of experience awaits them. Intrigue people with surprising benefits of engaging in your project. Reveal how becoming a part of that specific activity can enrich their life.

For example, an animal shelter that needs volunteers can write a blog post with the following title:

  • 5 Ways How with Animals Makes You Healthier and Happier

Further examples of benefit-driven headlines are:

  • Why Volunteering Is Important for College Admission
  • Join Our Project and Travel the World

Headlines that put benefits in focus can attract individuals who weren’t even searching for volunteering opportunities. However, once they spot the benefit, you’ll provoke their interest.

How to create the perfect benefit headline? Simply consider what your project offers. In addition to helping people or animals, how can your project improve volunteer’s life?

Some of the motivational benefits are:

  • Meeting new people
  • Gaining new abilities, skills, and knowledge
  • Health-based benefits (mental and physical)
  • Improving career prospects
  • Helping the community

Use Numbers

According to research, people prefer numerical headlines. Preferably opt for odd numbers. Apparently, headlines with odd numbers draw 20% more clicks than the headlines with even numbers.


The power of numbers is that they are specific. Numbers add a sense of predictability to the headline.

Moreover, numbers promise a certain structure to a reader. If your headline offers 5 tips, for example, the reader will know that they won’t encounter a block of text.

Numbers make the content skimmable and easier to read, which is what people want.

Take the following two headlines as examples:

  1. This Is How You Can Join Our Program
  2. Join Our Program in 5 Steps

Title number two lets the reader know what to expect. It exudes simplicity and promises a comprehensible guide for potential volunteers.

Combine the numbers with list words such as Steps, Reasons, Ways, Strategies, and Secrets to make an even stronger impact. For example:

  • 7 Reasons to Join a Non-Profit
  • 25 Ways to Make a Difference in a World

Evoke Curiosity with Questions

Writing your headlines in the form of questions is a useful attention-grabbing method. Let’s clarify why.

Questions evoke curiosity. This allows you to use the psychological phenomenon known as the curiosity gap.

BridgetteHernandez, a psychologist and a contributor writer at TrustMyPaper, explains how the curiosity gap works, “The curiosity gap presents a void between existing knowledge and information a person wants to inquire. That gap makes people feel deprived of certain information. Consequently, they want to fill that gap with an answer.”

Using questions in headlines will ignite people’s desire to know more. They won’t be able to resist clicking on that link, and that’s when your recruiting process can begin.

Here are some question headlines to give you a sense of how it looks:

  • How Can I Contribute to My Community?
  • How to Travel Abroad as a Volunteer?

Make the questions simple, short, and direct. That’s the winning formula for effective question headlines for recruiting volunteers.

Include Power Words

As you have to choose your words wisely, make the right decision by adding power words in your headlines.

Power words are impactful and persuasive words that trigger a psychological and emotional reaction. Their strength lies in their ability to entice action. This is exactly why you should aim to have at least one powerful word in your headline. All the great headlines do.

Some power words that you can use are:

  • First
  • Now
  • Don’t miss out
  • Save
  • Special

This is how you can incorporate them in your headlines:

  • Take the First Step towards Making a Change
  • Help Us Save Helpless Animals

For more power words, check out the Optin Monster’s list of over 700 power words.

Don’t waste the hours you spent creating amazing content. Write captivating headlines that will lead potential volunteers to that content. That’s how an effective recruiting process starts. Something as simple as a headline can be the determining point in attracting new volunteers.

Author Bio:

Nicole Garrison is a content strategist, writer, and contributor at Supreme Dissertations and a number of platforms for marketing specialists. She is a dedicated and experienced author who pays particular attention to quality research.

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