Going Viral – A Social Media / Content Marketing Dream Come True
Two stories went viral on the Internet in late January 2013.
An anonymous woman taped a letter of encouragement in a women’s restroom at her university. Her intended readers were other girls who had written their stories of woe on the bathroom wall. Within two days, the story had generated nearly 8,000 comments. In another story, a father challenged his daughters to gather 1 million likes on their Facebook page and he would buy them a new puppy. It took them only seven hours to accomplish their objective.
We believe there are two key online marketing lessons to be learned from these articles.
- Kindness – In a world of violence and cruelty, where many people believe human nature to be hopelessly self-centered, the public is hungry for extraordinary stories of kindness.
- Innocence – You can’t go wrong with a dynamic combination – children and puppies. However, the real power in the story is innocence. Who expects evil from children who want their faces licked by a cuddly animal with a wagging tail?
The Take Away: A New Social Media Strategy?
The take away for your business is to post on your website stories of kindness and pictures of puppies. Or not.
A company cannot overcome a poor customer service record by posting feel-good stories. In fact, attempting to do so might even enrage customers who have been wronged or abused. They may feel insulted, and view such stories as an attempt to placate them instead of doing the right thing and delivering better service. Similarly, a company with a reputation for violating the law or hiring shady employees will fail to generate good will with feigned stories of honesty and integrity pushed out through their social media channels.
Great Content Makes for Great Social Media Marketing: Make it Real
The true lesson from these stories is that a business that demonstrates true kindness and honesty (innocence, if you will) has the potential to draw enthusiastic followers and loyal customers, and to generate content with the potential to go viral. Such kindness and transparent honesty is in the culture of the organization, in other words, it’s real. It is expressed in the mission statement. It is demonstrated in how the business serves customers every day. It is exemplified by how the business makes being a good neighbor in the community a primary objective of both management and employees. It is epitomized by how the employees are themselves kind people. It is embodied in the way the business acts in a law abiding manner and is consistently trustworthy in delivering on their promises.
Your Culture: a Goldmine for Content Marketing
If your business culture typifies these traits, you have a gold mine of content to leverage in your website, blog, and social media marketing assets – content that could go viral. One of your employees just may do something incredibly noteworthy that thousands or even millions will want to share simply because they are truly enthusiastic about how your organization does business.
Developing the Right Content Marketing Strategy for Your Business
Stories like those above are just one of many facets of a strong content marketing strategy that attracts followers and drives increasing amounts of traffic to your website, blog, and social media assets. Finding and executing the right strategy for your company is key. Are you up for the challenge? We’re here if you need help with your content marketing efforts.