Why is no one wondering WHY we use social media?
So, I’ll out myself. Even though I work in an industry that is gung ho over social media, I have not fully embraced social media. Don’t get me wrong, I love it and use it ALOT, but just more as a tool. To get a quick read on something, research a topic or a product, I’ve even been sucked into a few people’s blogs that I visit regularly, and of course now I am actually posting content.
I’m not one for tweeting what I had for breakfast and althoughI have a facebook page, I update it about as often as I go to church (sorry mom) and I save my political, ethical and what’s wrong with the world rantings for those who have the good fortune of hearing them in person.
But that’s just me, it’s clear the world uses social media for different reasons. Don’t we?
With all the press, online discussions, and articles about the phenomenon of social media I’m surprised no one talks about what motivates consumers to use social media…the WHY people use social media. There’s tons of WHAT people are doing, like Forrester’s social media ladder or WHERE consumers are. There is a wealth of information on the demographics of consumers who are engaging in social media or who uses MySpace verses Facebook . But nothing on what inspires people to post or read or blog or tweet and keep them coming back for more.
If marketers and brands really want to utilize social media to reach consumers and drive interaction with their brands shouldn’t we first understand what consumers really want and need from the brand and social media. What do they get out of social media?
As Harvard Business School professor Mikolaj Jan Piskorski explains “To be successful, you need to shift your mindset from social media to social strategy.” Understanding the different motivations, what emotionally drives your audience(s), for using social media is the first step to building a great social media strategy. Plus, assuming everyone is motivated by the same thing can be a big mistake.