If you use headlines, especially headlines for ads, as headlines for articles or headlines to write on your website that make promises or raise questions in the minds of potential customers then, if what you say is not delivered in your content, all of your efforts were wasted.

It will just create ill feelings toward yourself and it really won’t likely get anyone’s attention at all – any more than being thrown a worm while fishing is going to cause a person with integrity to catch a fish when there are hundreds of other places they could be casting their line and finding success.

“Nice try.” If those words come into play in response to headlines then the headline didn’t work. To understand why this happens we need only take a look at an example:

Example of headlines that could be considered Tempting Headlines:

  • Make $$$ Giving Free Sales Courses on the Internet!
  • Free Tips Show You How to Get a Job in Just 2 Weeks!
  • Easy Way To Find House Cleaners Near Your Home
  • Improve Your Health with this Little Known Secret
  • Ways That Men Can Lose Stubborn Body Fat
  • Most Surprising Reason You’re Not Getting Hired for that Great Job
  • 10 Things Every Woman Should Prepare Before Going On A Cruise
  • How One Man Went From Broke and Homeless to Being One of The Country’s Top Web Copywriters
  • Are We Leaving Our Kids Behind? (Does This Affect You?) 

All headlines can be called tempting because they all have a little something extra in them that might cause someone to click on them – even if they don’t necessarily see the headlines as headlines.

Some headlines make claims or show promises of a result while other headlines ask a question to incite further interest.

When headlines work well, the content delivers on that promise or asks and answers a question. When headlines don’t work well then it is easy to see that they are empty promises designed to be nothing more than click bait headlines.

Click bait are headlines that don’t deliver on the promise they make or raise a question and then don’t answer it.

Click bait headlines do nothing more than waste time. They come across as headlines but fall short at delivering on what they are meant to deliver. Bad headlines like these actually have little value to us at all so we may not read them if we see them – especially when there really isn’t anything special about them.

5 reasons to stay away from click bait in your headlines:

1. They are not meant to be read but meant to be clicked on:

When you write headlines with the intent of getting someone to click on them, you should not expect people to read what is shared in the copy.

If you’ve worked hard on a piece of content only to have it be read by very few people because headlines were used that don’t lead readers where you wanted them to go, then your headlines did not work for you. They are pretty much useless and only wast time.

2. Click bait headlines make headlines just another form of advertising:

This is why the credibility of an advertiser makes such a huge impact on how well an advertisement will perform. Because there is no trust or expectation that the promises made will actually come true… We all know there is no “whiter then white”, still we get promised that exact thing for our laundry.

This doesn’t occur with headlines used to grab attention or headlines that are intended to be read because headlines in copy require trust that there is something of value worth reading about and sharing.

3. Click bait headlines give anger and frustration

If you create headlines with no intention of delivering what you promise then all you can expect is bad feelings from your audience. They will feel cheated and angry at headlines that were meant to deceive. Click bait headlines cause us to lose respect for a marketer or author. You will not be seen as an expert, but rather as a scam.

4. Click bait headlines can be boring:

We’ve all heard the saying “bait and switch”. This is a typical example of what happens when headlines are used that were never intended to be read in the first place. We go into something expecting one thing only to find out it was nothing more than a sales pitch for something else – or worse yet… complete BS.

When headlines promise something but lead readers down another path, they become just as annoying as bad advertising. It’s not about having an exciting headline, it’s about delivering on promises made to make headlines effective and interesting at the same time.

5. Click bait headlines can stop people from reading headlines:

If you use click bait headlines then you can expect headlines to be ignored whenever headlines are present. This will put you in a losing streak. No matter how good other content on your website is… it will all be ignored.

Click bait headlines will cause headlines to be ignored so headlines must prove themselves worthwhile by being compelling and capable of delivering what they promise or they simply won’t read.

The thing about headlines is that people can easily see through them if they do not deliver on promises made or raise questions and don’t answer them.

If the headlines you use are not interesting but instead are nothing more than click bait headlines, then your blog posts will have very minimal visibility because people never take the time to read headlines when they have already been disappointed with what was promised in the headlines.


Tempting headlines that are used to get people to click have very little value. They only promise and never deliver – they lead people into the hope of something that was never intended to be delivered in the first place.

If you do not wish click bait to be part of your marketing efforts… then don’t use tempting headlines as a form of advertising. Your headlines will have more credibility and be perceived as valuable when there is no intent on making promises.

Using click bait is cheap and untrustworthy and our minds know this intuitively which is why we do not recommend or bother ourself with click bait headlines.

You want help writing you headlines? Let us know here… we love writing.

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