Is your biggest marketing challenge getting engagement on your content? Despite repeated efforts, your content is low on shares? How do we define a piece of content as shareable? What makes people want to share content with others? How do you ensure that you’re utilising the shareability quotient of your content piece to the maximum?
Shareable content is the key to get access to potential followers, referral traffic and rule Google searches. If your users share your content regularly, you can rest assured that you’re doing something right.
Let’s start with understanding the science behind what makes a content piece shareable:
1. Social Endorsement:
Social validation has always been a driving force behind actions that people take. In the age of social media, this has reached different proportions altogether. There is an inherently instilled desire in people for ‘Approval.’ This desire drives the actions or opinions that we present to the world to reinforce the image that we need people to perceive. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that validation is the root behind popularity.
Stronger emotions tend to generate stronger responses in people. On social media, this can mean more shares and engagement, so long as the emotions trigger positivity, urge to do something or reactions to situations (both happy or anxious).
3. Inspiration, Interests and Incentives:
These form the 3 core factors that prompt people to share content – it inspires them, it caters to their interest or it incentivises them to share. Things that motivate or make us curious are almost always shared. As a content marketer, if you crack this combination, it is always a win-win situation.
Content evoking happy, positive, humorous emotions is shared more as people like to bring good news and share positive experiences. Humour is another facet that pushes up the chances of a content piece being shared.
The minute a piece of content is directed towards making life easier, it becomes 50x more shareable as people want their friends/loved ones to benefit as well. This was reason behind the popularity of ‘Life Hacks’ and DIY videos
Now that we have established the facets that define shareability, let’s look at the how we can consistently create content that engages and is sure to be shared
1. People love list:
Easy to understand and quick to read, lists, especially image-based lists are the hottest content property right now
2. Read your Comments
Analyse the comments on your content piece to get insights into what the users on your page are thinking or what’s impacting them. This is your source for new content on a regular basis.
3. Repurposing Content
One content piece can have multiple faces – blog post, infographic, list, video. Repurpose your content according to channel and users to get the maximum ROI out of it.
4. Of the week, the month and the year
Find assets that you can promote as the News/Thing of the week or the month or the year and bring in user participation through voting to get an instant hit. When people are involved in the decision-making process, they share the results with pride.
5. The good, bad and ugly
Pick a trending topic and present all the facets – the good, the bad and the ugly
For that. While the good news is great, the bad and ugly find a larger and diverse audience for their consumption.
6. Riding on the trends and current events
Stay updated with trends on the internet, but better still, create your own trends. Scanning trending topics and current events will feed your content strategy well as long as you can differentiate your piece with a sound opinion.
7. Pop Culture to the rescue
Like always, pop culture and memes will never let you down. Identify pop culture traits, infuse them in your content and see the magic happen when it comes to the shares. Memes are one of the most relatable content forms, hence the sudden upsurge in the ‘tag your friends’ content recently on social channels.
8. How-to and DIY posts/videos
If your piece has utilitarian value, it automatically creates a connection with the user who in turn shares it with people for whom it is equally relevant. This became the foundation behind viral videos by platforms like Tasty, Tastemade and other recipe blogs.
9. I am the Boss
Say it with enough conviction and people will believe you to be the Boss. People are always looking for a quick learning or expert opinion. That is what gives opinion posts the short cut to shares and likes.
10. Read, Repeat and Revisit
Focus on the quality of the content you are churning out and the users will repeatedly revisit your channels if they are getting content worth their time.