One of the things I truly hate, hate, is clickbait. I find myself specifically not clicking on things that sound clickbaity, just because I feel insulted by something thinking I can be manipulated. (That'll teach 'em.)
Especially though when it is totally unnecessary. A recent Lifehacker article entitled "This Secret Trick Will Save You From Getting Lost In Central Park Forever" could have just as easily, and less annoyingly, been titled, "How To Use Central Park Lampposts To Avoid Getting Lost." I still would have clicked and read, and would have felt less dirty about it.
Of course these show up as links all over the internet, but I've also seen a trend on YouTube to name videos with clickbait titles too. One of the channels I used to watch, Wranglestar, has become terrible for this, and I've all but stopped watching him because of it. Recently though, he published a video explaining why he uses clickbait video titles. It was interesting, and the tl;dw version is that he found it to be the only way to make money on YouTube anymore: regular titles don't get clicked, which means videos don't get watched, which means no monetized ad revenues for him.
If it is that effective, maybe library ought to pay attention. So, just as a "funny thing to think about but I would never do for real" project, here are a few of our library programs re-titled as clickbait:
- These Are The Five Books Your Child MUST Be Read Before They Eat Their Next Lunch!
- This Secret Group Meets Every Month - What Do They Know That You Don't?!
- If Your Baby Isn't Doing This It May Never Learn To Walk!
- Find Out The Best Foods For Winter!
- Is Your Teen Getting The Training They Need to Succeed? These Kids Are!
- Learn The One Weird Health Trick That Will Save Your Life!
- This One Small Group Decides How Your Tax Dollars Are Spent!
- These People Are Probably Investigating Your Past - Find Out Why!
- Why Is The Library Staff Not Working On This One Day In April?!
- This Woman Says You've Been Gardening WRONG!
- Discover The Secret Meaning Behind This Life-Changing Artwork!
- Who Is This Group Of "Friends" And What Are You Missing By Not Being One Of Them?!
Now those would totally boost our attendance numbers.