Wherever you spend your time online, you’ve more than likely been tempted by clickbait at one point or another. Love it or hate it, clickbait has become an essential tool for content marketers, helping them to garner clicks and engagement from social media users everywhere.
But when we’re all so used to seeing clickbait articles appearing in our feeds, are we becoming immune to their trickery? It’s time to consider the pros and cons of clickbait and whether it’s worth using as part of a forward thinking content marketing strategy.
But first, what exactly is clickbait?
The term ‘clickbait’ refers to content that is written purely to gather as many clicks as possible. It is usually presented in the form of blog posts, articles or videos and is commonly shared on social media or popular ‘listicle’ sites such as BuzzFeed, Elite Daily or Thought Catalog.
Elements of a typical clickbait post typically include:
- A strong, compelling headline to convince your audience to read on.
- Simple, easy to read text.
- Humor or memorable facts complemented by visuals.
- Content based on current trends or themes.
- Highly shareable content with the potential to go viral.
It’s time to weigh up the pros…
- Clickbait articles tend to result in a high amount of social shares. You may even find popular pages or brands that also share the content in order to make the most of the article’s traffic potential.
- As the articles are being shared far and fast around the web, your reach will be significantly higher, leading to more brand awareness and a wider demographic.
- More clicks mean more page views, which is ideal if your site makes money per view or click. Even if that’s not your method, you’re still bringing more users to your site ready to be persuaded by your content.
…and the cons:
- Many people are beginning to complain about the use of clickbait, even deliberately ignoring their lure. This could be a clear sign the trend is played out. Perhaps it’s time to consider something new.
- Clickbait that doesn’t have much to offer once clicked may lead to a lack of trust between you and your audience, damaging your brand’s reputation.
- There’s no guarantee a click will turn into a conversion based solely on a catchy headline.
After reading through both the good and bad points regarding the use of clickbait, it may be easier to come to a decision on whether to include it in your blog posts or site shares. Social media marketing is a chance to be creative, so don’t be afraid to create your own take on the trends and try something new!