Inspirations, deep thoughts, surprising insights, or random ideas on how social media intersects PR.
I think this chapter nailed the idea of sharing on the head. Everything he said I could relate to. Having it laid out for me helped me not only understand why and what my peers are sharing but why I’m sharing what I am. It’s all to build identity. The chapter quotes that, often times, people share if, “It made you look cooler, smarter, or more relevant- providing you with a personal psychological benefit” (45). This is pretty much the only reason I’ll share something. It is always for someone else to see and relate it back to me. Again, something that seemed so obviously but really wasn’t until it was all mapped out.
The section about the primal need was what I found most intriguing. Even though all this content and media sharing is as advanced as the human race has ever been, still our instincts for the human connection rises above the rest. Everything is still through a screen but what is getting the most shares is the content that makes us feel a certain emotional connection with something or someone.
“Influencers share stories because they want to build bonds with people. For them, that is the reward, and it comes from a deep place within them. If they think what you’re selling will be interesting to people they know, that is all the motivation they need. You cannot buy their interest- or their approval-with discounts or rewards” (52).
It’s almost like the more virtual we get the more we crave the real, non-virtual, aspects of it. It makes it easier to connect with people this way though and I think that’s why it’s become so popular. I know people who will share things to get the attention of someone they might be interested in, in hopes that they’ll see it. Yet, they would never directly say anything about it that person. It makes it seem more accidental or coincidental if two people happen to like that same thing without discussing it. I think people my age use that tactic a lot when it comes to sharing media and content and this chapter basically proves that. It’s the whole image idea, like the Wrangler jeans and men. If a girl has a crush on a guy who plays baseball, well then, maybe she’ll share something about baseball or a cool play she found online. The boy isn’t going to immediately jump to conclusions that she shared it because she has a crush on him, unless he’s frighteningly conceded of course, but he’ll just see it as. “Cool she likes baseball too, something I didn’t know about her.” But her plan most likely worked if he in fact did see it. That is why knowing your audience is the other crucial aspect to sharing content. If she didn’t know her crush played baseball it would be really difficult to post something that would potentially grab his attention. Although this is a smaller spectrum it all fits into the big picture!