Content Discovery Smackdown: Hootsuite vs. Buffer vs. KloutContent Marketing Minds: Ingredients of the Tastiest Content [Nutrition Label]From the Corn Field to the Digital Era: Content Marketing Starts with TrustContent Marketing: Is 2014 Really Shaping Up to Be the Year of Video?
Your Customers Aren’t Listening! How to Create Consumer Dialogue that Converts4 Tools for Nonprofit Social Listening and Reputation ManagementThe Promising Role of Social Listening in Treating Health IssuesThe Importance of Social Listening for Brands
- Public Relations
Facebook Testing a Way for Users to Buy Products on the Platform7 Website Tips to Attract More Shoppers to Your PagesHow eCommerce, Augmented and Virtual Reality Will Redefine the Retail ExperienceSearch Query Analysis to Increase eCommerce Website Conversions
- Content Marketing
Technology & Data
Social Startups: Bizible Connects All the Dots from Marketing Contributions to RevenueCreating the Perfect Profile for Your Social Media Marketing EffortUsing GPS and Localization for Social AnalyticsAnalytics and Prospect Intel: Discovering Your Ideal Prospect
- Big Data
- Tech & Innovation
3 Security Risks You’re Taking Every Day While Using Social MediaShould the President Have the Power to "Pull the Plug" on the Internet?How Safe is Your WordPress Website From Hackers and Other Malicious Attacks?
- Software & Tools
- Small Business
- Social Organization
Celebrating the Grand Re-Launch of Social Media Today! SBH Podcast Episode 8Why Should You Care If Your Employees Are Thought Leaders?Beyond Engagement: The Art of Managing Social-Media Risk in Employee Advocacy
Why All-in-One Social Media Management Systems Don't Cut It for Social Customer ServiceWhat You Should Know About Customer, Digital, and Contextual ExperienceSurging into Q3: How to Make It Better Than Q2Is How You Serve Your Customers Costing You Business?
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
Do Brands Understand What Motivates Sharing?
Posted on April 20th 2013
According to a recently released study from PNAS, what you Like on Facebook is an indication of your personality, right down to sexuality, political leanings and intelligence. In a study of 58,000 volunteers, this was proven with staggering accuracy. The problem is, too few brands have yet to understand this connection.
Let’s move away from social for a second. Do you own a Dyson vacuum cleaner - and even if you donʼt, would you like to? If the answer was yes (and I hope it was), why would you buy a vacuum cleaner that costs around ﬁve (sometimes as much as ten) times as much as one that serves the exact same purpose? The answer? Because of the way it makes you feel. Owning a Dyson is more an afﬁrmation of status than owning a product that might do a slightly better job than its competitors.
In his book “Hegarty on Advertising”, John Hegarty makes the case that audiences donʼt care about functionality any more - they expect stuff to work so it shouldnʼt be a selling point. What they do care about, instead, is how the brand reﬂects on themselves: how it makes them feel and how it makes them look. He says:
The issue with brands today is not about whether 'it', the product I've just bought, works - I expect 'it' to work - but what 'it' says about me. 'It' becomes a fashion statement. Brands should now be viewed through a prism of style and substance
In a nutshell: fashion over function. In longer-established forms of advertising, brands do a better job of remembering this. Online? Not so much. Brands waste energy in talking about themselves rather than remembering what their audienceʼs participation with that brand says about themselves. How awesome the product / service is rather than why people should care about it. Function over fashion.
BuzzFeed founder Jonah Peretti touched on this a little when he said that “the social web requires ad creative be re-envisioned for sharing among groups”.
So, why do people share? Because it gives them a feeling of meaning? Of giving something back? Possibly but ultimately people share to build “Brand Me”.
Regardless of the platform (Facebook; Twitter; LinkedIn, whatever), the online proﬁles we have are digital expressions of our personality, and the content on reﬂects that. Or, more accurately, how we want them to reﬂect that.
This is entirely deﬁned by the content we choose to share. There obviously has to be an element of interest in the content but for the most part we share links about social media to show that we are knowledgeable about it, we share funny YouTube videos to show that we have a sense of humour and we share pictures of our nights out to show that we are fun and popular.
As a brand, how do you get people to share your content on their own social media channels? Well one proven method is this approach: instead of making your content about you, you make it about them.
When you think back to some memorable social campaigns, the results prove the value of this approach. Old Spice: Personalized videos of the Old Spice Guy directly addressing users. Results: 40 million views in a week, 1.4 billion campaign impressions and a 300% increase in traffic to oldspice.com). Intelʼs Museum of Me: A personalized museum built out of a userʼs own Facebook proﬁle. Results: 540,000 Likes, 790,000 Facebook Shares,130 million Facebook Impressions. One of the earliest social “virals”, Elf Yourself, still gets millions of hits to this day (with over 378 million elves created so far) because itʼs entirely focussed on personalization.
All too often, brands are focusing on providing that personalisation purely through engagement around the content, rather than considering including it in their content in the ﬁrst place. “Weʼll encourage user discussion around the video/infographic/app” is a phrase all too often heard in the hallways and boardrooms of agencies and marketing departments the world over, without really thinking about why the user might bother.
Making shiny content might get an audience talking about it, but unless it offers any real value to them and their personal brand, why would they bother sharing it with their own audience? Think about what matters to your audience the most (themselves) and make that your priority. Ask yourself: “Why care, why share?” Because itʼs about me.