Tuesday, July 08, 2014

You won't believe what follows this headline! Well, yeah, you probably will. But that's because we've built up a relationship and I respect you.

Clickbait-y photo by me. 
You can write a compelling headline without resorting to clickbait.

In fact, what is now described as click bait began as good headlines, because they drew a reader in and paid off with something valuable to read. Nowadays people have grown skilled at writing the thing that draws you in without bothering to spend any time on what they're drawing you in to read. This is no good for anyone; not even the person trafficking in clickbait winds out because it's—honestly—not a sustainable business model. 

But all is not lost. Gawker was once the king of click bait headlines and now they've realized that writing strong pieces beats a shocking headline with no pay off. Buzzfeed is struggling to write nice longform original stuff but are so afraid of commitment that they still bury it under clickbait, meaning most people never see it. And there are numerous in-between sites trying to balance the two, but the honest truth is if you write a headline to draw people in and there's nothing of value on the there side they won't trust any of your content. 

Don't worry though, i think we're about to witness the dawn of snappy headlines paired with great content again. You know why? The internet has the number of click bait content producers and they are going down. Not tomorrow, but soon.

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