“OMG, you HAVE to watch this video!”
That’s the goal, isn’t it? We all want to create the kind of content that gets people to want to tell their friends about it.
Social media is full of so-called viral content, and if a post or video gets really popular, you see it on your friends’ pages again and again.
Behold the art of social sharing.
You already know that social media majorly affects your business, but do you really understand why it matters so much?
Social media plays a significant role in your digital marketing efforts, and it’s the single most useful tool for you to broaden your reach – and, hopefully, get more customers.
Why Sharing Matters
If you already have a content marketing plan in place, you know there are myriad ways to share your content.
But guess what?
None are as effective as social sharing.
That’s because, when you encourage social sharing, it’s not just you distributing your content – it’s the friends, family members, colleagues and acquaintances of people who just might be your next customer.
In short, it’s the people your customers love, like and respect.
For decades, businesses have spent billions and billions of marketing dollars trying to create ads that are even half as effective as a recommendation from a friend.
Until social media made sharing so easily, though, there were very few ways to do this on a large scale, and nothing has ever been so cost effective.
Think about it:
When you feel like going to dinner, are you more likely to take a recommendation from a restaurant’s marketing website, a newspaper press release, or your high school friend that tells you about their great experience at a local diner?
If you’re like most people, you’re going to the diner.
Social sharing is also an awesome way to get real, relevant analytics on your content. It’s easy (and usually free) to determine how and when your content was shared.
You’ll also get instantaneous feedback on your content – and that’s not something that comes standard with other distribution methods.
The more you take advantage of this data, and the more you deliver the types of content that your audience actually wants to read, the better your traffic numbers will be.
Ultimately, that traffic will lead to profits.
What to Share
It’s not rocket science: content that is “shareable” gets shared.
That means you’ve made it easy for the user to send or post the content instantaneously.
But of course, you have to make your audience want to share your content, which can be a bit trickier.
Encourage sharing by creating relevant, thought-provoking content that makes people want to tell their friends, and then ask them to share it.
Begin by writing well organized, clean, and useful content that’s focused on what your readers want.
Nobody visits your website because YOU want them to. They’re on your page because THEY want something, and your job is to give it to them.
Readers are also more likely to share posts that are entertaining, useful, funny, or that inspire some type of emotional reaction. These things are called value – they’re elements that people would willingly pay for, but you’re giving it to them for free.
Finally, ask for the share.
Asking is often overlooked, but actually including a “share this post” call to action has a drastic impact on the amount of people that actually do it.
Social media experts know that widespread virality isn’t something you can manufacture, but good content that’s composed well gets shared far more regularly than average content.
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