The reasons why people share content on social media

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Written by:

What makes you stop when you are scrolling through your feed? Is it an emotion? Is it an informative piece of content? Is it something that you want your friends and colleagues within the music industry to see? The truth is that marketers are commonly using psychology to provoke emotions within people that will make them share a piece of content. After all, it will help them reach more people & thus potentially sell more products. 

Think back to Childish Gambino’s hit track “This Is America”. The provocative imagery of people being shot made people want to share as the video reflected what was going on in American society. The same effect is currently happening in your social media feed. During this article, we’re going to discuss exactly why people share content on social media, and how you can apply those same tactics directly towards your own content as a music producer on the likes of Facebook & Instagram.

A lot of the time, producers and record labels post a random picture or video and expect it to go viral with the simple belief that people will automatically share it. But that scenario is far from reality. After all, you are competing with millions of other people for the consumer’s attention. That includes athletes, rappers, entrepreneurs, and a variety of other people. Essentially, your post is simply a few centimetres on their mobile screen. If they don’t like it, they will scroll right past. Therefore, having a strong understanding of why people share content, what they like to share, and how to create that content, is extremely important If you want people to share your posts.

Naturally, we want to share posts that will be useful to others. Although social media does admittedly focus on individuals, people within the music industry often share important news, marketing tactics, and a variety of other content in order to help educate others on current practices. But in addition to that, it also boosts the reputation of their personal brand if they are consistently sharing high-quality posts that resonate with a specific audience.

General psychology is another reason why so many people love to share content on social media. As the vast majority of people tend to share the idealized version of themselves, it creates a fake reality for an audience. Therefore, content which makes people feel motivated to become a better version of themselves tends to work extremely well on the likes of Facebook & Instagram. This is because people are imaging themselves in a certain situation that personifies success in their minds. If your content is able to make them feel good, the likelihood of them wanting to share the content is extremely high as they’d like to pass that emotion onto other people.

In addition to the previous points, people regularly share content to nurture their relationships so that they can create closer bonds with others. The reason why brands such as Wendy’s have experienced significant growth and relevance on social media due to their regular interactions with fans. As the experiences are (mainly) positive, it incentivizes the audience to develop a stronger relationship with the brand, and potentially purchase more products etc.

If you are a Don Diablo fan, you’re naturally going to share his posts with your friends who also like him. If you see a festival line-up, you’re naturally going to share it with other people also attending the festival. Every time you see posts that can help strengthen your relationship with others, you do it. After all, humans crave interaction with other people; it’s a scientific fact as we are social beings.

Since Facebook first implemented the “like button”, reports have shown that it has been used over a trillion times by users engaging with content. Ultimately, the reason for this is because the user wants to maintain a relationship with either their friends, family or a brand. If somebody provides you value, you are statistically a lot more likely to reciprocate by engaging with them on social media. After all, it shows a bit of appreciation for their efforts. If you want to apply this tactic to your own social media strategy, you should be regularly creating content that brings your audience significant value that makes them want to share & engage. For example, it could be music production tips on how to properly master a track or a tutorial on how to get more bookings in order to increase your revenue.

Finally, users also share content because it unites them over a common cause. Whether it’s facing adversity, discussing political issues, or the excitement of a festival, a common belief/mindset can encourage users to engage with their network over a piece of content. For example, before Swedish House Mafia were announced at Ultra Miami, people were constantly sharing content surrounding rumours and conspiracy theories because they were excited about the prospect of the groups return. Likewise, producers often share memes about production because they can all relate to them. By creating content that unites your audience over a common theme, the chances of them wanting to share your photo, video, or article are significantly higher.

By creating content that resonates with your target audience’s psychology, and is of a good quality that makes people want to engage with it, the chances of your content being shared by a lot of people, and potentially going viral amongst a large audience, is relatively high.