Don’t know about you, but I always love it when science supports what I already believe to be true.
Daniel Zarrella, webinar presenter for The Science of Social Media, has a background in web development and combines his programming capabilities with a passion for social marketing to study social media behavior from a data-backed position and teach marketers scientifically grounded best practices. http://danzarrella.com/bio#
This week I listened to his webinar “The Science of Social Media” a couple of times and what follows is a list of myths that he busts:
Myth – “Ideas spread because they are good”
In fact, ideas don’t spread because they are good. Sometimes it’s just plain luck that turns a blog, video or social media post into viral marketing material. However, Zarrella believes that there are three factors that increase the probability that something will go viral;
Exposure – this is where numbers come into play. If you have a large number of social networking connections (friends and followers) the more people you can expose your viral marketing content to.
Attention – this is where interesting, funny… maybe even exciting viral marketing content comes in. If you have something interesting to say, and a creative way of sharing it, you may just be able to grab people’s attention.
Also, it is important to write in a style that is simple and plain, not full of adverbs and adjectives. And, stay away from the negative, stories of hope and positivity work the best.
Another way to grab attention for a viral marketing piece is to write about subjects that people have questions about, and in turn, there is scarcity of information available to answer those questions.
According to Zarrella, “An information void is where information spreads” ( …hope I quoted that correctly).
Motivation – this is the really tricky part. How do you get social networking contacts to share your content? Well, the first thing you should do is make it easy for people to share your content. And, if you have written viral marketing content that is constructive or positive it is more likely to get shared. And, please take note, negative content rarely goes viral.
Myth – “Engaging in conversation is the most important thing on Social Media”
According to the data, people with lots of social networking contacts are not usually involved in conversations. Actually people who share a lot of links tend to have a lot more followers.
And, according to the data, more facebook conversations don’t necessarily mean more views. Zarrella concludes that ‘engaging in conversations doesn’t work, publishing interesting content works!’
Myth – “Don’t call yourself a guru”
In fact, people that call themselves Official, Founder, Speaker, Expert, Guru and Author have on average 100 to 200 more followers at Twitter. Social networking contacts respond when you identify yourself authoritatively.
However, you can go overboard along these lines… when people talk about themselves and how great they are too often they have fewer social networking contacts. And, when people post negative content they have fewer followers.
Myth – “Friday, Saturday and Sunday are bad days to publish content or send out emails”
Actually, the email click through rate is higher during the week-end. And, people tend to Share more often during the week-end.
Finally, Zarrella shares that Social Request work! When people ask nicely, their readers respond. Don’t forget social calls-to-action. Articles that have the words ‘comment’ in them – get more comments.
Along those lines, I want to thank you for taking the time to read this social networking article. If it was interesting and informative – feel free to leave a comment. And, as a BONUS I am offering no-cost training on an ongoing basis. Just subscribe and we will keep you posted on the upcoming training seminars. Go to http://goo.gl/48NVD and take a look at what training webinars are coming up.