In this episode, Jasmeet Sawhney talks about a core concept (or framework) that marketing teams can follow as they try to make their content more shareable on social media. Jasmeet talks about importance of “Audience Activation”, and then about specific tactics to get more engagement on social media. Watch the video for more..
So, what is the one thing you need to do to get more shares? Stay tuned to find out..
Alright – let’s admit – all of us want more shares on social media. Whether we are posting articles, videos, or images, all of us want more shares than our last post got. Right, that’s why we do social media. Whether you are a business, whether you are an individual, that’s why we do social media. That’s the currency on social media. But, how do you get more shares? If you do a search on Google, you would get hundreds and thousands of articles, and content, videos, talking about different things that you could do to make your content more shareable. And, it ranges from making changes to the actual content, to actually optimizing your website or channels.
For example, people would tell you to create more positive content because it gets more shares. Or, providing practical value like tips and listicles and best practices because they get more shares. Or, adding emotion – making your audience feel happy, providing them joy, or entertaining them, or surprising them in new ways would get more shares. And, then on the logistical side, you know, making the share buttons more accessible on your pages, or asking people to share content, not being shy about it gets more shares. Right. All of those things; there are hundreds of things that you could do to make your content more shareable. But, if you are a typical marketing team, the problem is, which one of those hundreds of things you pick that will make your content more shareable. Because your business situation is unique, your audience is unique, your marketing situations are unique. So, which of those hundreds of things you pick that will make your content more shareable? Because that’s where most marketing teams are; they are all confused!
We talk to marketing teams day-in and day-out, and they are doing hit and trials, trying to figure out what works because they don’t have a framework. Right. So, you have to follow one framework to actually structure your thought process, to structure your tactics and elements that you need to include in your content, and something that applies business and marketing situations. And, that’s the concept of “Audience Activation”. You have to ask yourself a simple question every time – any time you are producing content, making changes, you know, trying new things – “Is it going to activate your audience or not?” And, I am not talking about activation in subtle terms. I mean activation in terms of activating a super-lazy guy, who on a Saturday night, is half-asleep, buried in a couch after a large meal, and still finds the enthusiasm and motivation to click that share button. And, as extreme as it sounds, it is exactly how your audience is reacting to your content because that’s just human tendency. There is so much of resistance, so much of unwillingness to share content unless you are able to activate them.
So, you have to figure out which tactics or elements work for you under that framework of Audience Activation. Repeatedly ask yourself – are you applying the right tactics? Is this going to activate my audience or not? And, every business situation is unique, as I said before. If I tell you to add some emotional aspects, so that you can connect with your audience emotionally. It may work, it may not work. For example, if you are a B2B company, it is much more difficult, and much expensive to connect with your audience emotionally because they likely care more about practical value. Providing them information or insights that make them more effective in their job, make them more productive. So, you have to pick your tactics, and there are so many different tactics that you can pick. There’s a list that you can create, and then pick the top ones that apply to you under that framework of Audience Activation.
There’s a great book out there called Contagious by Jonah Berger, and he summarizes these different elements into six broad areas, and a lot of them apply to content as well. For example, Social Currency – can you provide your audience content that will make them look smart when they share that content, can you make them feel like an insider, or make them feel like they are part of an exclusive club? So, when they share that content, they feel empowered, they feel smart. And, then, there’s this whole thing about adding emotional value. Can you add joy, can you add surprise elements, or even shock? You know, content that creates curiosity. All of these different emotions do very well, but they have to apply under the framework of audience activation – does it work for your business or not? You could also basically create content that is “top of the mind” – that’s another thing that Jonah Berger talks about under Triggers – if there are things that your audience is already thinking about, maybe current affairs, news – whether it’s elections, or hurricane, or Superbowl – they are already talking about it. If somehow you mix your content with that top of the mind topic, it’ll get more shares because people are already talking about it.
So, whichever tactic you pick, or likely tactics because you’ll have to pick multiple tactics to make it more effective, make sure you wrap them in the form of a story, or a narrative, because people like stories, people love sharing stories. So, you have to pick the tactics, but focus your energies, or focus your resources on the core concept of audience activation, and all these tactics, and all these different elements would fall in place automatically.
That’s it for today. Please like and share this video – I have to say this because this video is about getting more shares. Thanks for watching!