Friday, May 11, 2012

Stop Thinking Like A Marketer; Start Thinking Like A Person

A new study shows that the use of social media brings most humans as much joy as sex or food.

This shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone who enjoys telling others about their own accomplishments. We all know the feelings of pride we receive for recognition and congratulation. Who doesn't love to bask in their own glory every now and then?

Of course opportunities like that don't come along every day. It's not as if we all walk around with our cheering section ready to bust out a rhyme on our behalf; sing our praises.

For many of us, our social media network is the next best thing to a personal theme song. They are our cheering section; the people we want to tell all the good news that comes into our life because we know they we care.

This is exactly the way businesses should be suing their social media networks because it is what people expect. A social media network is good for much more than just touting your products or services. It is great for touting the positive stories; sharing good news about your employees, your products, your services; the awards you've received, the volunteer work one of your employees does in their free time; employee hobbies; births, graduations, promotions.

Social media is, by definition, social. That means you need to start thinking less like a marketer and more like a real, live human being. What news would you like to share? What news would you be interested in hearing about? What do you find interesting?

There is a reason people feel good when they share information via their social media network. Our brain releases dopamine when we do something self-serving because it signals that we are looking out for ourselves (important if we plan on procreating; surviving as a species) and no less important for a business that intends to survive.

Plus, when you actually participate on social media instead of using it as a soapbox or a bullhorn, you are much more likely to encourage engagement and sharing. This then is the secret to using social media: act like a real live human being and NOT a marketer.

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