Content sharing is the holy grail of much content marketing, digital marketing practitioners, and social media specialists. But how can you get this?
“When we care, we share.” That’s what Jonah Berger tells us about social currency and why certain content goes viral in his fantastic book, Contiguous. But what does it mean for you as a content creator, blogger, or business owner?
It’s often secret. You can create a really lovely, informative, funny, and interesting piece of content, and it gets lost among massive streams.
Although content sharing is just a small part of the entire content marketing strategy and social media reality, all marketers and content creators want to see their content shared everywhere, far and wide, with as many users as possible.
But the story is not such simple.
Content sharing is a topic that lies in all forms of marketing. All have been living this nightmare since the early days of email marketing and the WWW. However, it presents a wider context of storytelling.
So, why do people share content? Why do they bother at all? Why do they love hearing and telling stories? The easy answer: because we want to feel emotionally compelled to.
Well, it seems too easy. But you will create story-based content and gain much exposure, attract followers, and so on!
No, it doesn’t work that.
Keep reading as we intend to reveal the secret no one shares.
Content Sharing Psychology: Why We Share
When conducting a customer-centric content marketing strategy, you need to pay attention to our nature as human beings, self-centred (not selfish).
In general, sharing content through social media offers a personal advantage or benefit, even if we are unaware of it.
It involves psychology, emotions, and some chemical processes you might not realise that go hand in hand with the reaction of sharing. For example, according to Berger, sharing stories or information might be driven partly by arousal.
That sounds pretty self-oriented, right?
To break it down, we need to define content sharing.
It essentially refers to the strategic distribution of any piece of content across relevant social media platforms.
And when we’re explaining content sharing, it’s important to be aware of intention.
The goal for many is to drive referral traffic and increase content engagement. It’s basically the core of marketing, and all platforms can be just about the same concept too.
Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are all fair game with countless others.
While digital algorithms are used in multiple capacities, content sharing through the internet has its roots in psychology.
Today, the marketing landscape is customer-oriented, meaning everything tends to go around the consumer. Therefore, all your business operations should revolve around your audience’s preference.
Still, beyond that, the majority of culture is self-centred.
Again, it’s not selfish. On the contrary, we love to engage in activities for personal benefit.
But why do we share?
People share to create value for others
The reason we share fits into our secret intention of being self-centred. When we share something funny, cool, informative, or even scientific, we satisfy a variety of needs. We want to feel heard, understood, seen, and so.
Marketing agencies work to share content that fulfils these needs.
Indeed, social media marketers do their best to harness psychological power to share and create content to reach their relevant audience and drive traffic.
For example, your marketing initiatives should make your audience feel understood and offer a solution to your audience to emphasise that your product can serve them.
These kinds of ads can stick because they address a specific need.
Show What We Care About
Not just that, people share if they see something that aligns with their views. So yes, there are multiple reasons for content sharing beyond marketing, as there are many different psychological motivations that make people share on a daily basis.
For example, we wish to define ourselves to others. Based on a survey by New York Times, 68% of online users say they love to share to give other users a sense of what they’re interested in.
Build a Community
We’re social creatures who love creating relationships. So many of us share to nourish and grow relationships. That makes sense, of course.
Even beyond marketing theories, being online is about connecting with others in today’s world. It’s one of the primary methods of building a shared community.
After all, it’s no surprise that any content we share serves the same purpose.
Remixed Foundation Marketing found that 73% of online users share content to help them connect with others with the same interests after surveying the general online population.
Lastly, content sharing is about self-fulfilment. This concept fits right in with the psychology that the digital era is centred around the idea of oneself. Getting likes and comments and seeing interaction with posts makes us feel valuable. These are basic needs we all strive for.
Also, branding is a major factor in sharing. We see many businesses, influencers, and even everyday people share to promote their products and make them seen.
Content Sharing: Tools & Strategies
After we introduce the whole story of content sharing, how can we take advantage of these facts to produce sharable content?
It should start with a good content sharing strategy where there is always a point in writing.
So, the question is, do you already have a compelling content sharing strategy?
No, wait a minute.
Before you answer, you need to read this piece as we look at how every creator can come up with an effective strategy and what tools you can use to help you apply content sharing methodology. So let’s get it right off.
- Choose Relevant Platforms
When you create content to share on platforms, you need to choose the right one on which you’re active.
Besides sharing features, management tools help you plan out content in advance and schedule posts to publish at specific times. That ensures consistency in posting frequency while allowing users to focus on other important tasks.
What’s more, many of these tools provide analytics so that users can see which posts have been performing best with their audience. This data helps to inform future post-creation decisions better and adjust publishing strategies as needed.
- Consider Cross-promote
It’s a perfect way to promote your posts through different platforms. When marketers use cross-posts, they first publish a post on a blog, then copy and paste the link to post across various social media such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram story, and Facebook.
With a few clicks, they publish their new piece of content in front of a diverse audience. It can generate extensive exposure. Great strategy, right?
Not exactly. Every social media channel has users who exhibit significantly different behaviours and preferences for content. They even have vastly different motivations for opening your link.
As such, you need to optimise each social media posting strategy according to the channel you’re putting the content on.
Also, you can rely on a cross-promotion method, including a set of actions aimed at promoting products from different brands with a similar segment that’s not in competition.
It takes more time, but it is worth it.
But how do you know the best channels to promote? Read on.
- Create Great Content
Remember, the best way to get people interactive to share your content is to create great content. That said, plenty of little tricks can boost engagement, such as showing photos of real people, visual content, or including calls-to-action statements.
We will share more techniques to increase your posting shares. However, it’s important to remember what works well for a page won’t necessarily work as well for the rest.
You need to observe what your audience likes and how to improve it over time.
- Conduct Competitive Analysis From Time to Time
It would help if you did competitive analysis to find out what your competitors do. Indeed, one of the easiest ways to conjure up ideas to create content people love to share is to look at what they’re sharing right now.
So, it’s okay to do some spying. It’s okay to be competitor-tracking Sherlock Holmes.
Discover what your competitors are doing and how their people are engaging. Then, look at the most-shared piece of content in their accounts and explore what you can produce similar to gain similar exposure.
That’s a great way to spot insights on competitors’ content your followers and potential followers want to see (provided your audience overlap).
Here are a couple of things to do to be a successful tracker:
- Make a list of your top five-eight competitors and the social media platforms you are posting on. Answer this question; where are my competitors online? If you’re on the same platforms, you compete directly with them to gain traffic.
- Investigate the last six months of content they produced. Please take a look at their tone of voice, visual elements, and level of engagement. That will involve a lot of scrolling. But it’s worth your time. Then find answers to these questions: are they publishing blog posts, infographics, videos, or some other type of content? What types of content are you posting that’s similar to theirs?
- Concentrate on content that has gotten high engagement on each channel. Note what they’re doing differently from you. Take notes of the types of posts that are doing best and what seem to be falling flat.
- Use their high-engagement content to inspire your own when establishing your strategy. By discovering what your audience is already reacting to, you can use those concepts and make them your own.
- Take what your competitors are doing and make it 15x better. You need to position yourself as the best option for your audience.
- Is Your Content Sharable?
To generate sharable content, you need to ensure that it’s easy to share. Offering Share With Your Network (SWYN) button. Enable other options on your blog posts like Forward to a Friend (FTAF) to provide the possibility for readers to send it through emails or other social networks.
- What Type of Content do People Like to Share?
As we mentioned before, it’s always worth spying on your competitors to find their spark and trying to make something even better.
But here is the thing: what we share is as important as why we share. In this stuffed-content world, content sharing runs the gambit.
Photos, news, articles, and videos can all pop up on your feed anytime. Still, there seems to be a hidden intent in what type of content we want to share the most.
An incredibly popular type of content to share is ephemeral. It’s any form of content that’s offered for a limited amount of time.
For example, Instagram Stories target this human tendency because it’s obviously a form of ephemeral content. That’s why it has become so popular.
Platforms that use this content, like Snapchat and Instagram Stories, have nearly 250 million active users. However, please note that it’s also suitable for its audience.
For example, LinkedIn Stories was a flop because users on LinkedIn don’t have the luxury of being there for 24h to watch these stories.
Alongside disappearing and fast-appearing content of Instagram Stories, people also like to share breaking news, making it a list of most-shared content throughout the internet.
In fact, around 31% of Americans regularly know their news from Facebook, and roughly 59% periodically get breaking news from Twitter.
Lastly, we can only talk about popular content by referring to paid advertising. Undoubtedly, you can reach 928.5 million people through paid ads on Instagram, making this method a large bulk of content being shared online.
Of course, when tracking what we share, we will be traced back to why because we share what is relatable to us and what helps us satisfy basic needs.
Whether our intention— connecting with others, self-promotion, or being seen, what we share fits right into our self-esteem, which should be aligned with the content sharing pictures.
Not just that, the way we share always fits typically with what we share, as many social media channels are optimised for certain types of content we like to post and see.
While many people will post their content, others like to circulate the posts from other accounts.
Liking, tagging, and commenting are all ways that users often engage with content sharing.
Marketers and businesses know that too.
The basic psychology of needs is the primary reason we share online and why content sharing is part of any marketer’s job works so well. The answer is that they frequently study their customers’ behaviour through social media and offer something appealing to their findings.
It makes sense that content sharing is powerful for small and large businesses alike.
Even social media influencers, bloggers, small brands, and startups use it daily.
Here are two types of content you can produce for more content sharing, regardless of your industry.
New articles/ blog posts
There is a fine line between good writing and very good writing. If you want to generate a blog posting, you need to make it under the second category.
Make it informative, funny, and creative, adding value to your audience.
Otherwise, you can create news articles that personal journalists and publishers frequently share on sites with premium content. Once developed and released, they become popular in re-posting material on Twitter and Instagram.
News are content sharing example.
Because of the urgent nature of these news pieces.
They are hugely popular and available in many different forms— from shorter content such as Instagram, Youtube Shorts, and TikTok to longer formats often displayed on Youtube. People like to see an aesthetic visual picture, and you have ample opportunity to grow using video marketing.
How Can Profiletree Help You?
Content sharing is all about understanding your audience and offering something that appeals to their personality and dreams, something that makes them feel good.
It’s only possible to do so after conducting market research, uncovering your customer behaviour, and targeting the right segment.
We are not a typical content marketing agency that creates socially sharable content to gain more exposure. Instead, we take over all your digital assets to make them ready to receive content consumers and segregate visitors to turn them into qualified leads according to their behaviours.
We are experts in content optimization.
Our approach applies to a set of marketing technologies and techniques in the form of code snippets; all optimised and plugged in to make it ready to work seamlessly on your website and other applications.
Creating a data-and-analytics-driven strategy is part of our job to make it handy in the monitoring stage to uncover your customers’ characteristics.
In the final phase, we optimise campaigns for important events to excite your audience about what you’re offering.
So how are you going to polish your brand, so it’s the best offering for your consumers? First, let’s talk about how we can make your next project a big hit.