The Psychology Behind Shareable Content:
What Makes People Click? Introduction: Unraveling the Psychology Behind Shareable Content
In today’s digital era, creating content that resonates with audiences is a top priority for many businesses. However, understanding what makes content ‘shareable’ is a complex task that involves much more than merely crafting a compelling headline or utilizing beautiful imagery. In essence, it involves understanding the psychology behind why people share content online.
It involves tapping into the fundamental needs and desires of our audience. It is about making a connection on a deeper, psychological level.
In this article, we will explore how psychology plays a pivotal role in making content shareable. We’ll examine the intricacies of emotions, social currency, storytelling, and the power of visuals. Ultimately, we aim to provide a comprehensive guide to creating content that not only captures attention but also encourages your audience to click the ‘share’ button.
The Intricate Connection Between Emotions and Shareability
Emotions play a critical role in the decisions we make, including what content we share online. Content that strikes a chord emotionally—whether it incites happiness, surprise, anger, or any other strong emotion—is more likely to be shared. It’s not just about creating content; it’s about creating emotion.
A study by the University of Pennsylvania found that content that evoked strong emotions (positive or negative) was more likely to be shared. Content that provokes awe, amusement, or laughter can quickly gain traction online.
As marketers, understanding the emotions that drive sharing can help guide content creation efforts. Creating content that resonates on an emotional level can improve its chances of becoming viral.
Social Currency: The Prestige of Sharing Valuable Information
The term “social currency” refers to the idea that what we share about ourselves online adds value to our online persona. When we share useful, engaging, or exclusive content, it enhances our personal reputation and image. In other words, sharing valuable content gives us ‘currency’ in our social circles.
The concept of social currency is essential in understanding the psychology of why people share online. Types of content that typically offer high social currency include practical advice, insightful commentary, or exclusive information.
In essence, if your content can make someone look good, they are more likely to share it. It’s a win-win situation: your audience gains social currency, and you gain wider content reach.
The Power of Storytelling: Narratives That Resonate
Storytelling is a potent tool in any marketer’s arsenal. Stories are inherently engaging, and they stick with us far longer than bare facts or figures ever could. When content tells a story, it becomes more relatable, memorable, and ultimately, more shareable.
The human brain is wired for stories; we are far more likely to remember information if it’s presented as part of a narrative. Successful content pieces often leverage the power of storytelling, such as Dove’s Real Beauty campaign or Airbnb’s community stories.
Understanding the psychology of storytelling and how to weave narratives into your content can dramatically increase its shareability.
Creating Content that Triggers Action
Content that inspires action is more likely to be shared. Whether it’s a call to action (CTA) at the end of a blog post or a thought-provoking question in a social media post, creating a sense of urgency or importance can encourage sharing.
The use of psychological triggers such as scarcity, urgency, and exclusivity can spur audiences into action. Implementing CTAs effectively can significantly increase the chances of your content being shared.
Remember, the goal of your content is not just to inform but also to encourage your audience to act.
Fostering a Sense of Belonging: Shared Content as a Tool for Connection
Shared content can create communities, fuel conversations, and foster a sense of belonging. When people share your content, they’re not just sharing a link—they’re inviting others into a conversation and forging connections.
Online communities such as those on Reddit or LinkedIn revolve around the sharing of content. Brands can leverage this to create a loyal community around their content.
In this sense, shareable content acts as a bridge, connecting people and fostering discussion.
The Role of Visuals in Shareable Content
Visual content—whether images, infographics, or videos—is more likely to be shared. The human brain processes visual information far quicker than text, making visuals a powerful tool for grabbing attention and conveying your message effectively.
Using eye-catching visuals can drastically increase engagement and shares. Infographics, for example, are shared three times more often than other types of content on social media.
Understanding how to incorporate compelling visual elements into your content can significantly increase its shareability.
Conclusion: Mastering the Craft of Creating Shareable Content
Understanding the psychology behind shareable content is the first step towards creating content that people are eager to share. It’s about creating content that resonates emotionally, provides value, tells a story, prompts action, fosters a sense of belonging, and captures attention through powerful visuals.
With these principles in mind, you’re well on your way to mastering the craft of creating shareable content. So why not take what you’ve learned today and apply it to your next piece of content? Who knows—it might just be your most shared piece yet.