Jan 10 2020

Clickbait vs Catchy Headlines: Where to draw the line?

Posted by Lou Valenzuela ,

Under this digital age, many find comfort and relaxation by just mindlessly scrolling through the Internet, especially on social media. Every time we get the chance to have a few idle minutes, we just whip out our mobile phones and either open that bird app, Facebook or Google. Because of this mindless scrolling, content creators are desperate in creating the right headline that will grab their attention and click your article.

However, it cannot be denied that some of us may have gone over the top that the headlines we put do not match or fall short on what the content actually offers, leaving you with pissed off and frustrated readers. We do not want that do we? The key here is to know your limitations and to be more creative in writing headlines. This needs to have the right formula for too much of the other may still raise a few eyebrows. With this, allow us to give you a few tips on where to draw the line between clickbait and catchy headlines.

What is a clickbait?

Clickbait or sometimes called linkbait, is a hyperlink of a web page that lures audiences or visitors to click and see the article. There is usually an explicit goal for click baits which include a requirement of payment, registration or simply to gain traffic. As the term implies, clickbait uses catchy or anything that may grab the attention of viewers like the use of any headline that may stir the initial reaction of viewers.

How does a clickbait differ from a catchy headline?

1. Catchy headlines contain informative and relevant content


Probably the most important difference of catchy headlines from click baits is if the content they offer is relevant or not. Some clickbait articles may contain information, but it usually is too old and no longer relevant at all. They contain the usual information that you would find in any article about the topic. Catchy headlines on the other hand usually deliver something fresh and well-researched content. More often than not, too, these are even well-written.

2. Catchy headlines give you what you expect

Another glaring difference the two has is the integrity of the information they offer—if the content mirrors well what the headline is talking about. What usually happens with clickbait articles is that readers expect something big and revealing about the content, only to be disappointed with a subpar article. Catchy headlines, however, offer content that is faithful to what the headline talks about.

3. Clickbait headlines are often too explicit and vulgar

Catchy headlines are usually witty and have a good way of discussing sensitive topics. It can be direct without being vulgar. Clickbait headlines, on the other hand, are all out. There is no filter with how these types of headlines are made. It is also too explicit that it does not shy away from hyping you up to feel several emotions.

4. Clickbait headlines are oversell


This has been glaring about the content marketing industry. Clickbait headlines are too hard sell—reading just its title will give you an idea about what its goal is: to drive sales. What usually happens is that it is written in a way that the product or service is already being imposed upon you. With catchy headlines that have good content, you can see that their primary information is to give information about a given topic and driving out sales the secondary part. Sure, want you to avail their products and services, but they will offer information first for you to know more about their product or service.

5. Clickbait headlines are often dense and appeal to your curiosity


Clickbait headlines have been said to be explicit and vulgar. This is because it is made to appeal to your curiosity or to your emotions so you would click the link and check out their article. However, upon checking, it would only contain nonsensical information.

6. Content, clickbait, and catchy headlines

As content marketing is only starting and about to reach its peak, clickbait headlines are often used by content creators because of how effective it is in driving traffic. Eventually, users see through it and became sick of it. This led to the traffic of content having clickbait articles drop by 75%. Just imagine how a waste it is if you have a good article, and its headline looks more like a clickbait—people will think it is a clickbait and would not bother taking a look at it. But if you come up with a catchy headline, then you would grab the attention of the audiences.

Now that you have an idea about clickbait and catchy headlines, you must now be mindful and be more creative in creating headlines. Use all your wits and originality to come up with a good title. There are also service providers, like OOm, who can help you out with this.


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