Something that’s useful to cultivate for your social media is to better understand the psychology of sharing. Why do people share? What makes a video go viral? The first thing to recognize here is that no-one can set out with the intention of creating a viral video and be guaranteed success. Some things increase your likelihood of a hit (such as keeping the video shortish and making it funny and/or shocking) but there’s a lot of luck involved and a certain ‘X Factor’ that can’t be quantified.
But by understanding why people share, you can greatly improve your odds. And this basically comes down to remembering the purpose of social media and why people sign up in the first place. First and foremost, people sign up to social media as a form of communication. This is a means of staying in touch with friends and expressing yourself and that means you are very likely to share content if it helps you to do either of those things.
That expression is one VERY big part of this. When we socialize in the real world, a lot of this involves thinking about the image we want to give off and how we want to project ourselves. That’s why we wear certain clothes, buy bling and workout. It’s also why we’re so keen to tell people all about ourselves! That narcissism is even more apparent on social media where most of what we post is about ourselves!
So if you create an online quiz, then you can understand why it is likely to be very successful with people sharing their results! Moreover though, if you create a blog post with a very clear identity that says something about your readers – then people will share that as a way to show that they identify with what you’ve said and this in turn allows them to express themselves in that way.
Make a blog post about vegetarianism and lots of vegetarians will share that content to show that that’s who they are and that that’s a part of them. Post about why it’s finally time that you got in the gym and people who feel the same will want to share it (remember how we said that people feel like sharing their goals is the first step in achieving them?). Post about the amusing aspects of working from home and if your readers associate with you, they’ll share it!
The other reason someone might share this content is to show they’re thinking of someone and to show that they understand them. Again, this is why it’s such a good idea to post with a very specific target audience in mind and not to try to cater to everyone! If you write a post about the health benefits of knitting, then you’ll find that people share it with their friends if they know that their friends like to knit. Try to trigger the ‘Ooh, John will like that!’ effect.
Make Great Quality Posts
All these only works though if you make your posts excellent quality. Your post title can be as on-point as you like but that will only take you so far if your content is poor. If your friend tagged you in a post and you read it only to find that it was poorly spelled and very dull, you’d likely just be annoyed at them!
So make sure that your content is excellent quality and that means not only in terms of the subject matter and offering value but also in terms of the way it is written and even the way it is presented. Great content is long, in-depth and filled with useful takeaways. It uses well-written, error-free copy and it is made to be engaging and instantly gripping. If you don’t have the writing skills to deliver on that, then you either need to cultivate them, or you need to hire someone who can do it for you.
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