There's no denying it - we love social media - Facebook alone has 1.32 billion daily active users on average. And with 75% of adults* using social media platforms like YouTube, Snapchat and Instagram, social media is the new Word of Mouth, but with the ability to go massively viral (for the good such as #KnowYourLemons from Worldwide Breast Cancer, and for the very bad like Pepsi's massive ad fail with Kylie Jenner).
So let's look at Facebook as an example of using this word of mouth for your business - for the good.
Social media has made it easier than ever before for users to share their thoughts and experiences throughout their networks. But what are the factors that drive someone to share content with their Facebook network?
Numerous studies have found that Facebook users only share content with a perceived social benefit - that is they believe sharing the content will:
- Improve their social status;
- Help them fit in;
- Benefit their relationships with others;
- Help them define themselves;
- Help them gain approval if they share the story;
- Make them look good;
- Help them communicate their self-identity; and
- Make them part of a community.
So what does this mean for your social media strategy - what can you take from this?
The key takeaway from these findings is that we should focus on creating and facilitating messages that benefit the audience by improving how people see them, showing people who they are, and benefiting their relationships with others in their social network.
And a very important part of your strategy is to try and use your audience to build your online community - a community that is loyal and passionate about the brand, and feels a sense of belonging. You want these community members to be your unpaid unofficial marketing and sales team, spreading the word, and sharing your brand. This is particularly important to have this community in place if you want to launch campaigns that will rely on co-creation to go viral.
If you want help with your social media strategy, talk to us and lets get the conversations happening.