Step 8: Write a catchy headline

The Impaakt Team

8 min Read Time | February 16th 2022

Key Takeaways


Follow a 3-part structure: company name ➡️ action done ➡️ quantitative impact.


Always insert your most important metric: absolute numbers.


Add dates and locations when necessary.

Why does it matter?

Headlines are not meant to be vague or to hide key pieces of information.

Readers should know in 5 seconds what the article is about and should be convinced that your analysis is worth reading (and rating!).

Think about media articles, what is going to entice you to read them? Great headlines have that power.

Below are some best practices you can follow to write an engaging headline that will make your analysis stand out.

1. Respect basic standards

A headline should respect the same editorial standards as the analysis (this is covered in Step 6: Use the right standards).

One recurring mistake we see is writers using CAPITAL LETTERS or putting Capital Letters at the Beginning of Each Word, which should be avoided.

  • Capital letters should only be used for Countries, Pronouns, or Companies.

2. Follow a 3-part structure : Company name ➡️ action done ➡️ quantitative impact

This structure is the most effective to summarise the core of your analysis.

Let’s take a look at a few good headlines following this pattern:

  • Casio supports math education through its calculators, reaching 25Mn students each year

  • Pola Orbis consumed 218,365 m3 of water in 2021

  • Through training and microloans, Nestlé supports the livelihoods +500k farmers in its supply chain

  • Continental’s rubber supplier has cut down over 15,000 hectares of the Congo rainforest

1/ Avoid putting the targets, commitments, or intentions of the company or relative metrics, as these may be misleading. For instance, you should not write:

  • Caterpillar has reduced energy intensity by 32% since 2006, but is unlikely to achieve its 2020 -50% target

2/ Avoid using relative comparisons in the headline. Absolute numbers suffice. It should be very straightforward.

  • What we do not want to see: Company A emits 1M tonnes of GHG emissions in 2021, equal to 5,000 people's energy use
  • What we want to see: Company A emits 1M tonnes of GHG emissions in 2021

3. Insert your most important fact or metric

You will have noticed that each of the above headlines feature either:

  • Quantitative results
  • A core fact

Without these, your headline will remain unclear.

See the headlines below, do they tell you exactly what kind of impact the author is analysing?

  • Chipotle launches a sustainability tool to show the footprint of each ingredient
  • FedEx supports small businesses including minority and women-owned businesses

Not really, right?

To strengthen your headline, you need to wait until your analysis is finished, and then identify your most important metric:

  • It should have an absolute number: number of women employed, volume of waste in tonnes or CO2e emitted, etc.
  • It may include a relative figure: % of energy consumed coming from fossil fuels, % of women in the board, % of water withdrawn coming from water-stressed areas, etc.

4. Add dates and locations when needed

If the impact described is focused on a certain area or period, it is a good practice to mention these.

For dates, we recommend putting it towards the end, but different formats can be used. A few examples :

  • Verizon’s data breach exposed over 6 million customer details in 2021; it continues to suffer data hacks
  • British American Tobacco generated 152,000 tonnes of waste in 2021

As for location, there are different ways to go about it. You can either talk about the nationality of the people affected or specify the country. See below :

  • P&G expands its sustainable palm oil program to improve the livelihood of 50,000 Malaysian smallholders
  • ITC has an 84% market share of cigarettes in India, where the burden of smoking-related deaths is high


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Step 9: Choose your cover photo

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