Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Truth Behind Facebook Click Baiting

Baiting for clicks to websites have been around ... well since as long as the Internet. So what's with Facebook's sudden urge to kill the most used tool on your computer and phone today. Aren't "links" the very lifeblood on online marketing.

I've done it myself... whenever I believe there's news in the Social Media world I've clicked on links that say "Click Here for More Information." without any idea who is providing the content, and how valuable the actual information will be. (Let's just say I close hundreds of windows daily)

Links like "YOU WON'T BELIEVE THIS ONE" or "GUESS WHO JUST QUIT SMOKING" ... Links that have no description nor actual information on what you're about to view.

In a bold move, Facebook now will reduce your ability to 'see' these links in order to "weed out" the "noise" in the timeline. (Unless they pay for a Facebook Ad of course)

Facebook defines Click-Baiting:
"Click-baiting is when a publisher posts a link with a headline that encourages people to click to see more, without telling them much information about what they will see.
Posts like these tend to get a lot of clicks, which means that these posts get shown to more people, and get shown higher up in news feed,"
writes Facebook research scientist Khalid El-Arini and product specialist Joyce Tang in a blog post. 

It's the headlines Facebook is objecting to... not the link or content. They want to be sure your getting information you really want... not just some random site with nothing to offer.


Here's the Real Scoop!

A few weeks ago, Facebook introduced the "SAVE" button. It was a way to save content on Facebook for viewing later. Remember that?
It was actually a remarkable idea for Facebook... what better way to get you to log in again to see information you could have easily bookmarked in your browser.

The same thinking goes behind the Click-Baiting change.

Facebook wants to be all inclusive in your life. It wants you to spend every possible microsecond on its website. (Sometimes we forget Facebook is a website)
Click-Baiting takes you right off Facebook into the rest of the world... where there's a wonderful world of valid information. Ideas and content you would absolutely love to devour... without Facebook's permission.
(Remember... Facebook only provides your content to 1- 2% of your Friends and Followers unless you pay for Ads)

The more time you spend on other sites, the less time your on Facebook... and the less chance you'll click on a Facebook Ad... and the less money Facebook can collect from it's advertisers.

This is not a new concept. Remember Compuserve? Remember AOL?
If you smiled when I mentioned them... you understand.
If you don't know who they are... you understand.

"Top Hat" Terry
Social Media Phoenix