What makes content “shareable”? Let’s start with “why our brand needs to create shareable content”, first.
If our followers, or our ideal audience, share our content with their followers its reaching potential new customers. Our ideal audience has an entire community of people with shared interests that may align with your brand. Now, that is powerful!
Social media’s algorithm shows a significant decrease in organic content’s reach. With the combination of paid advertising and competitors dominating the feed, it’s not easy to get your content seen. This is where shareable content comes into play.
In this blog post, you will find a list of ideas to help trigger engagement and increase the chances of getting your content shared.
Competitive Research: What’s #trending?
Start with competitive research; what type of content is getting shared right now? Are your competitors focusing on blogs, videos, or something else? What topics and formats are they using? Create a list of your top 3-5 competitors and write down similarities from their most popular and engaging content to use as inspiration.
We also recommend setting up Google Alerts for specific keywords within your industry. For example, if you are a real estate agent you might want to set up alerts for words such as “real estate market”, “commercial real estate”, “housing market” and so on. That way, you are consistently informed about the buzz in your industry through real-time newspaper articles, blogs, or scientific research.
Outside of your industry, content related to pop-culture also performs really well. Search the trending page on Twitter, or Google Trends to see what people are currently searching for.
Starbucks used the trending #10YearChallenge to their advantage with this tweet:
Audience Research: Appeal to Their Interests
Researching your audience may be one of the most important characteristics of shareable content. If you think about it, the people who will share your content first is your followers. It’s essential to have a clear understanding of their interests and beliefs.
Use information from your basic target demographics. Your audience wants to know that your brand or product aligns with their interests. In addition, take a look at previous content you have shared to see what they have connected with best.
Another way to research your audience is by simply engaging with them. What are they saying the comments section? Did they agree or disagree with your post? Take note of this.
Lowe’s Pinterest page is a great example of sharing content that relates to the interests of its audience. They share anything from remodeling homes ideas, DIY projects to holiday recipes. Let’s face it, they would not have nearly as many monthly views as they do if they just posted their home appliance products. However, they’ve created value and share things such as holiday recipes, even though that’s clearly not their area because it appeals to their audience.
Seventh Generations’s mission is to protect the world with naturally safe and effective household products. They also dedicate 10% of its profits to non-profit community, environmental, health, and responsible business organizations working for positive change.
Seventh Generations posted that they would be taking the day off to participate in the recent Climate Strike. Their customers care about the environment, and they’re willing to take hard stances on green issues.
Bitboyz Digital created an entire blog post dedicated to 7 Ways to Appeal to Your Audience Through Social Media we recommend checking out.
A study by the American Marketing Association analyzed thousands of articles from the New York Times to define the factors that led to more shares. Content involving positive news that aroused emotions such as excitement and awe had a higher chance of getting shared. Further, content that led to feelings of frustration and anger also had a high chance of getting shared. The takeaway here is to create content that makes noise and makes people react!
In Nike’s tweet, they share the news of Eliud Kipchoge becoming the world’s first to run a marathon in under two hours. Nike’s audience is athletes or active individuals who will share this content because it’s inspiring and exciting news.
You can also create content that is simply entertaining or funny. Check out Chiptole’s use of reposting user-generated content to their Facebook page that ultimately leads to a ton of engagement and shares.
Another way to create shareable content is to use visuals. Quality matters, but so does appearance. Create content that is easy to read and compelling. Get creative and use bullets, lists, infographics, time-lapse videos and so on.
Target posted its third-quarter earnings results on Linkedin. The statistics stand out and the infographic is straight to the point.
However, Target also used visuals to create a fun pie chart on Instagram.
Add an Incentive
For quick shares and follows, create an incentive. Reward your audience for sharing your content. A few ideas include offering physical items such as Swag, downloadable or at a discount. Or, host a giveaway and require users to follow your page, share your content or tag friends in the comments.
Here’s an example of a giveaway Concept2Completion hosted, requiring contestants to share the post.
In conclusion, great good content. It’s as simple as that. Content that is worth sharing, will be shared. Ultimately, your content should provide value to your audience. We recommend starting with competitive and audience research than using tactics such as emotional appeal, visuals, and even incentives. The next time you share a brand’s post, think about what exactly made you click that share button.