September 12, 2023

Click Bait

Click Bait Meaning?

Click bait is an intentionally misleading or exaggerated headline, introduction, image or other form of content meant to convince users to click a link and visit a webpage. It exploits humans’ innate curiosity to consume sensational information or get answers to controversial/vague questions. Click bait makes a strong appeal to human emotion. It is relatively successful given that 60% of users comment or share a link before reading the content.

Examples of clickbait headline phrasing includes:

  • “You won’t believe this…”
  • “How to lose weight fast with this one easy trick”
  • “This happened. And they were shocked to learn why”
  • “He kicked a lion and was surprised at what happened next”

In the short term, it can be highly effective at generating large amounts of traffic, stimulating social media engagement, creating virality and increasing ad revenue. Over the long term, it harms brand reputation as users consistently feel deceived by the content they eventually read. Also, the amount of relevant, good quality traffic generated by click bait is low with low conversion and high bounce rates. Click bait is also a violation of guidelines on major social media platforms and search engines.

Instead of banking on the fleeting success of click bait content, businesses should instead aim to create informative, accurate and engaging content. It should be relevant for the target audience while conveying a compelling but authentic value proposition. To increase content appeal, use catchy visuals such as videos and images. The company should encourage audience engagement and interaction through questions, discussions or feedback.

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