In the Lynda.com course Viral Marketing: Crafting Shareable content, a scientific approach is considered to identify what makes content viral, or most likely to share. The key elements discussed are defined as STEPP (social currency, triggers, emotion, public, practical value, and stories). The greatest takeaway for myself was the culmination of all elements culminating in the idea of story telling. Communication, and the sharing of ideas can best be expressed through stories. Assuring that the stories we share about a product, idea, or other content we hope to share contains the core integral message we hope to relay is key. Sharing information that provides value, as well as showing the value, as opposed to simply telling others about the value, has a greater psychological impact on the target audience. Emphasis of promotion must take into account the psychological behaviors of people, and what triggers them to take action. What creates an emotional connection with the audience, what makes the audience feel important, special, or “in the know”, and in what different ways can value be expressed that will inspire others to share. It is defining the personal motivations of the target audience, as opposed the the overall interests of the company. If we can target the psyche of the target audience, then our efforts will effectively communicate, and our ideas and products will be shared, remembered, and have greater success than those that only offer an advertising approach. We build trust and connection with our audience, and fosters an environment where people want to share who and what you are about as an organization, business, or creative professional. My greatest takeaway if the need to identify that value that makes me unique as a creative professional, formulate stories that support that value, and make my audience feel as though they are part of a unique and special group of people with knowledge that others may not have. It is in this way that they will be inspired to share the knowledge with others, share their status of “being special” and help to promote your efforts via the most powerful form of communication today, “word of mouth”.
Week 2 Lynda.com Certification: Viral Marketing