Why things catch on !!!
from State of Digital.com 05 June 14 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
What is this Book about? The book is a great insight into some of the science & psychology behind why people share and what makes content popular. It focuses on online sharing. Why does some content go viral and not others? Is there a pattern behind the “most read” & “most shared” articles on news sites? It then talks about how we as marketers can leverage this same phenomenon to help our products/ideas get more “buzz”. [Also available as an Audio Book]
About the Author. Jonah Berger is a Marketer who was sat in a traditional science class one day and wondered whether the same logical approach & research techniques could be applied to psychology & sociology. A PhD, 10 years of research and a career as a professor of marketing later, we have the “Contagious” book.
Breaking down Social-Sharing. The book kicks off with an intro about why some things just catch on. In some cases it’s because they’re better/ cheaper/ more widely advertised, but there’s often more to it than that. “Social Transmission” (social-sharing) is the single biggest common factor. Berger provides us with plenty of interesting stats and examples demonstrating social transmission in action. For example, did you know that only 7% of all word of mouth happens online? A sobering thought when you consider the focus we give to making things “go viral” on the web. On that point of going viral, only 1/3 of 1 % of all YouTube videos have more than 1 million views. Why these videos? Is there a science behind social sharing and if so, how can we harness it to deliver the right results for our businesses, even if our product isn’t inherently exciting or naturally shareable?
Contagiousness can be distilled into six key principles and these comprise the bulk of the book. Berger goes into detail about and provides actionable STEPPS for: 1. Social Currency, 2. Triggers, 3. Emotion, 4. Public, 5. Practical Value, 6. Stories (STEPPS) Berger packs the book full of lots of great examples that you’ll recognize – which really helps drive home the principles he’s discussing. We’ve almost all heard of “Will It Blend”, or Susan Boyle’s performance on Britain’s Got Talent. These are fantastic examples of Social Currency & Emotion in action.
Blendtec got started with a meager $50 marketing budget.
Who should Read/Listen to this book? Anyone whose role touches on social media or content marketing could learn a lot from this book: bloggers, community managers, planners, & strategists. I think everyone could draw something from it. Even if you’re just interested in the psychology behind why people do what they do – I think you’ll find it a great read. Anything that helps us understand our customers can only be a good thing.
Why this Book? The book is a great way to formulate a checklist when writing any content – to understand whether it’s likely to become contagious. There’s a handy table at the back of the book which summarizes some of the key points and is a great refresher when looking to analyze your own content. The book can help you conduct research on what works – to “rate” content you’ve previously shared based on the 6 STEPPS (ie, using a scale of 1-5). Does your most contagious content happen when your total score across the six STEPPS is greater than 15? 20? Or does your audience respond best to content that has a high Social Currency or Practical Value? You may find using just one principle is enough, or you may need to combine two or more to get the effect you want.
Comments: What have you found to be “contagious” in your Marketing?