I’ve recently noticed a trend in how video links are being marketed on Facebook. It’s another way to hook you in and get you to visit a certain site, thereby allowing them to gather income through advertising. See if any of these headlines sound familiar:
- The Koch Brothers did something that will make liberal heads explode
- HYSTERICAL! My Puppy Does NOT Want To Get Up. At :52, I Knew It Was Hopeless!!
- If This Video Doesn’t Make You ‘HAPPY’… Well, There’s Just No Hope For You
- A Bully Called Her Fat… This Was Her Reaction On Live TV. I’m Speechless!
- These Two Dogs are Absolutely Hilarious When They Get a Special Treat! The 0:36 Second Mark Had Me Cracking Up–Brain Freeze Anyone? You’ve Got to See It!
- Nobody Expected THIS To Happen When These 4 Women Walked On Stage. Incredible!
- This Guy Keeps A Promise To His Dad When He Was 8. His Dad’s Response? Priceless!
- Her Baby Died During Birth, But Mom Asked To Hold Him; Two Hours Later, She Heard A Gasp
- This Is Hilarious. This Guy Interviews His Guinea Pig. I’m In Tears!
- They Almost Laughed Her Off The Stage. Then This 80-Year-Old Salsa Dancer Blew Everyone Away! Wow!
- This Dad’s Reaction to His Baby’s First Laugh is Priceless!
- Nobody Expected A Flight Attendant Could Do THIS. And It Was Caught On Video!
These are actual headlines that I pulled from Facebook after about 5 minutes of scrolling. As you can see, there is a new strategy at play. Websites have begun taking YouTube videos posted by other people and reposting them on their sites, usually accompanied by some type of sensational statement. Two of the most prolific offenders using this technique are SFGlobe.com and PetFlow.com, but there are many more. This is sensationalism at it’s best.
To take it yet a step further, they are also using a new image trick. You may have noticed it. Often, they will embed an image that highlights the sensationalism. You’ll see an edited picture from the video that includes a “drawn” red arrow, or maybe something circled. Generally, the highlighted area has nothing to do with the statement made in the headlines, but it certainly gets you wondering. And then you click. And then the website says “show me da money.”
Another image trick I’m seeing used much more is to embed an image that actually includes a play button. Visually, it appears that if you click on the image, the video will play, much like an embedded YouTube video. Nope. You will be taken to a page that includes the actual embedded video and loads of advertisements, often a few pop-ups as well.
None of this is bad, and generally the videos actually are rather cute and worth watching. It just bugs me to see this marketing approach being taken. It smacks of the magazine covers you see in line at the grocer. The main goal of this new approach is to get you to share the link, thus opening the ad-laden site to more and more people.
Sensationalism and Capitalism tied up in one little nice bow. Go ahead and click the link and watch the video. Just be aware of what’s going on. I dislike manipulation.
I have included a little gallery of examples below. All of these were found with less than 5 minutes of scrolling through Facebook. By the way, did you see my embedded pic for this article in Facebook? What did you think? Totally blew my mind! Amazing! I never would have expected that!