Social Media and Psychology : 4 Principles for Marketers

You cannot achieve success in social networks if you do not learn to understand your audience. The best way to do this is to use the principles of psychology.

Social Media and Psychology

Social Media and Psychology

Experienced marketing specialists are well aware that this approach is indispensable when distributing content.

The article presents the most critical aspects that you should take into account in your strategy:

  • Why do people distribute content on social networks?
  • How to use color to influence the audience?
  • How to create trust-based relations with users?
  • Why is it essential to control emotions when promoting a product?

Below are the answers to these questions from the psychology point of view.

Reasons why people re-post:

The New York Times did extensive research and found out that there are five main reasons for this:

– The desire to improve the lives of others:

Almost all respondents (94%) said that they want to help their friends improve life with the help of reposts. Create content that can be useful to your audience (and their subscribers).

– Self-identification:

Two out of three respondents (68%) are sharing records to “create the perfect online person.” Your content must be in the interests of the audience so that they proudly make re-post.

– Strengthening and supporting relationships:

Four out of five contributors share content to stay in touch with subscribers. Think about how your posts can help them interact.

Ask users to tag some friends on comments, encourage reposts. Accompany this with a compelling call to action (“Share this video recipe with the best chef of your friends — and get a chance to win a new set of dishes!”)

– Self-realization:

Everyone is pleased to receive likes, positive feedback, and confirmation of self-worth. The study showed that “consumers get more pleasure from the content they shared, and they get more pleasure from the content they shared with them.”

Create informative posts that will help your audience experience this pleasure regularly.

– The desire to talk about what is important:

Four out of five respondents (84%) say, “Sharing information is a way to support a business or company that is important to them” for them. Think about what activities your brand promotes, and create posts about it.

These five points demonstrate that the reason for sharing content is the relationship with other people, not with your brand. Keep this in mind if you want to create customer-oriented posts.

The choice of color affects the behavior of the audience:

Perhaps you do not consider color as an essential part of the social media promotion strategy. However, psychology says the opposite.

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The results of the study “The effect of color on marketing” states that “people form their opinion within 90 seconds after the start of interaction with other people or brands. Between 62 and 90 percent of the estimate is based on flowers only. ”

It is not so much about a particular shade, but about whether it is suitable for the brand and the product.

According to Entrepreneur, “almost every academic study of flowers and branding will tell you that it is much more important to match the colors and personality that you want to present than the observance of stereotypical associations.”

When making a strategic decision about the color to promote content on social networks, think about what corresponds to the ideas of the brand.

What message do you want to convey and what colors will help with this?

There are general associations (for example, green – calming, yellow – happiness, and so on), but the context is much more critical.

Audience confidence is a necessary condition for sales:

You will not buy anything from someone you do not trust. Your audience does the same. Chris Graves, general manager of public relations at Ogilvy, conducted a webinar in which he described how marketing specialists could earn the trust of their customers.

Chemical oxytocin plays an essential role in the formation of relationships. Called “confidence hormone” by economist Paul Zak, oxytocin is released when a person feels part of something.

“People are more likely to change their thoughts or behavior if the result allows them to feel better, which often means belonging to a group,” explains Graves.

He described the experiment conducted by the energy company. According to reports, people who have shown the habits of their neighbors in energy consumption want to copy them (regardless of whether they spent more or less energy).

As Graves explains,

“this is an example of social proof … this shows consumers that their” tribe “has already become convinced of the benefits of certain behaviors.”

You can apply this theory to your strategy to create trusting relationships with clients. Custom content and positive feedback is a great way to show the audience that others are already enjoying your products.

Millennials trust user content 50% more than any other source.  Another study says that “76% of consumers consider content distributed by people to be more honest than brand advertising.”

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Emotions affect people’s actions:

According to Psychological Science in the journal Association for Psychological Science, a challenge of emotions can trigger an action, including a re-post.

Their study explains:

“The excitement can cause the exchange of information partly. When a person is excited, the vegetative nervous system is activated, which then promotes social interaction. ”

Any emotional message reinforced the response of the experiment participants. However, the more positive the material was, the more often it was shared. Use positive emotions in your posts in the following ways:

  • Share fun stories from the life of customers or work-related issues.
  • Use relevant blog humor.
  • Ask subscribers to share their positive life experiences in the comments, or hold a related contest. For example, a chain of grocery stores may offer to share memories of the most pleasant family dinner in the past year.
  • Post a video in which an employee or director tells an inspiring story.
  • Add “happy” Emoji posts.

People become infected with other people’s emotions in personal conversations – imitation is a way to keep in touch in a group. Scientists, together with the journal Social Neuroscience, found that in the case of using smiles, the same areas of the brain are activated.

A study by Emoticons and Phrases confirms this. After studying the use of Emoji on Twitter, scientists say, that “People who often add emoticons (especially positive ones) are becoming more popular and influential.” Use emoji in your media content.

Understanding the behavior of the audience will help to create more effective and accessible content. Understand the reasons for reactions and actions, and you will be able to influence buyers and the success of your business.

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