Is feeling surprised the foundation of viral content — or is it inspiration?
People historically make buying decisions emotionally — so it stands to reason you need to evoke the right emotions to motivate them to buy your product. This is where content can play an integral in your brand messaging strategy. From making your audience feel good to inspiring them to create change — here are four ways to evoke emotions that are likely to increase traction and engagement for your written content.
See also: Top Tips to Make Your Content Go Viral
In many cases, people buy things because of the way the brand makes them feel about themselves. If a certain brand makes them feel intelligent, confident or inspired, they are more likely to buy from that brand.
In order to evoke these types of emotions from readers, you need to choose your language with care and deliberately convey with every word that your readers are special. Use vocabulary that is positive, uplifting and resonates with your particular market segment. Don’t try to use fancy words with an audience that won’t get their meaning–this will have the opposite effect to what you want. Instead, write in a way that reflects your audience’s core values.
If you want your audience to share your posts on social media, try to inspire them. When people feel inspired and empowered, they want to pass the good news on to other people they care about, especially during difficult times. That’s why stories about people helping each other or people experiencing miracles tend to make the rounds on social media pages.
Writing inspirational content is often a matter of storytelling. If you can share an experience from your life or the life of a customer who overcame the same problems that your current customers are dealing with, they may feel inspired. You may also want to share inspirational one-liners on Facebook or Twitter. If you do, make sure you provide an original take on what you are saying rather than posting well known platitudes.
See also: What’s the Deal With Cat Memes?
When your writing contains something unexpected and interesting, readers pay close attention to what’s next. If you sell flowers, people might expect that a Valentine’s Day post will be about the perfect flower for your significant other. If you talk about taking a lover on a walk through flower gardens giving gifting a luxurious bouquet, your audience may be pleasantly surprised.
Positive emotions like surprise and inspiration are the safest bets, but other emotions can also inspire sharing, too. MIT Technology Review took a look at the sharing patterns of 200,000 users on the social media platform Weibo and concluded that anger motivates a reader to share more than the other studied emotions.
If you are able to move an audience towards frustration with something wrong or unfair, it can motivate them to seek change. You can talk about some injustice related to the service you provide, then explain that your company exists to correct that problem.
But be warned, this doesn’t mean that negative emotions should be the way to go. The same study noted that similar negative emotions like sadness and disgust do not trend well.
Anger can be risky because people might associate your brand with a negative emotion, but this risk can pay off if done correctly. If done right, it’s a sure boost to your bottom line.
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