Readers that use the internet frequently may have heard the term "Clickbait". This recent internet phenomenon is currently being employed by various online news outlets including blogs, as well as YouTube videos. For those of you that might not know, clickbait is any form of content that uses very basic human instincts to persuade people to click and read/watch. This includes blog titles, video titles, or thumbnails. For example using a thumbnail with an attractive man or women on for your YouTube video even when your video is nothing to do with that topic, or writing a blog title like, "You won't believe...". It's also used in advertising, more typically low budget advertisements. We've all seen the adverts about the single mother who invented a simple cure for wrinkles or even the many people who earn £100 an hour from sitting on their computer at home. Of course, these are extremely likely to be untrue, and perhaps even a con. Perhaps the oldest form of clickbait came before the click even existed, with newspapers...
"You Won't Believe These 7 Crazy Facts About Clickbait Articles"
The fact is newspapers rely on a similar form of this to sell newspapers. There's no doubt that a paper will sell more with a jaw-dropping headline plastered across the front, and the same goes for online formats like those previously mentioned.
While many internet users hate clickbait titles with a passion, if you're looking at it from a marketing or business perspective then there are no doubts that it works. I can say that I've been browsing the net and spotted a tiny clickbait headline or thumbnail and, although I knew what I was getting into, I clicked it anyway. I'm sure we've all been there, it's hardwired into our brains, we're curious!
Should you use clickbait in your marketing?
Clickbait appears to work better for younger generations, we can see it prominently on websites such as Buzzfeed who employ it to keep people reading more and more articles. Websites such as Buzzfeed also target users aged 18 to 30. On the other hand, websites that mainly target people older than this don't tend to employ this technique nearly as much.
Clickbait can also be considered spammy, or even be associated with malicious websites, so maybe something to distance yourself from.