To learn: find recipes, new vacation spots, etc.
To connect: the ostensible purpose of social media; to bond with one’s tribe.
To explore: to wander a bit and take a mental vacation – fail videos, anyone?
To brag: look at me; I’m helicopter skiing.
As you see these drivers, they make sense. It’s easy to scroll through a given feed and identify each of them in action. And they’re central to the decision-making ‘availability’ that a given user represents.
If I’m here to learn, deeply immersive, sensory videos will not persuade.
If I’m here to brag, rational, comparative appeals need not apply.
And so on…
And while this is THE unlock to more effective digital communications, few brands are applying this (we’ve seen those that do drive double-digit increases in their results).
Which brings us to the social media Behavior Equation: behavioural science (neuroscience, to be exact) provides a simple equation by which to diagnose, predict, and leverage the true drivers of consumer behaviour when it comes to social media. There are three elements to consider:
Where are they? Yes, it’s important that your audience is actually on the platform. And most media buyers utilise demographic and behavioural data to get the right message in front of the desired audience. But there’s more to the story…
What are they attached to? This is where the plot thickens: how hard would it be for them to give the platform up? There are lots of things people do that they aren’t really engaged with. This is rife within social media, and correlates directly with their ultimate buying behaviour – or lack thereof – based on social media content.
What aligns with their buying psychology? The third element in the Behavior Equation. Essentially, does their psychology relative to the social medium align with their buying psychology relative to your category (per the four motivations described above)?
When all three of the above align, you’ve mined cognitive gold in terms of influencing real-world behaviour. But if even one element is misaligned your content will merely wash into the sea of digital noise.
Consider an example pulled from our longitudinal database, focusing on the social media Behavior Equation for Gen Z consumers, age 18-25: