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Interpreting Likes: Self-Interested, Aspirational & Altruistic Liking

The Psychology Of Liking Brands

  • 46% Like a brand they have no intention of buying from
    • 52% of those people want a free item
    • 46% like but cannot afford a brand’s products
    • 24% liked a brand to help out a friend

Graphic - Facebook Liking Behavior

THOUGHT: For all of the increasingly in-depth and sophisticated analytics online communication platforms have generated, interpreting user behavior and consumer intent remains as much an art as it is a science.

Though conventional social media wisdom maintains that the quest for a gazillion Likes or Twitter followers is a fools errand, it is an assumption with which I do not necessarily agree.  If one of the purposes of your Facebook page of Twitter account is to serve as a content distribution channel, then acquiring a critical mass of audience that will help that content spread is an important objective.

That’s not to say that I’d recommend finding Likes and followers from any source. But if you know your target audience(s) intimately, you’ll know which Facebook pages they like and which Twitter accounts they follow. Building a critical mass of fans by targeting the fans of accounts you’re audience is likely a fan of is a sound tactic.

But that presupposes you know who your audience is.

All too often, the reaction I’ve reaction I’ve received from the question “Who is your target audience?” is a blank stare or, the ever-helpful, “everyone.”

When a small or medium-sized organization does know who they’re targeting, that portrait is typically restricted to the barest of demographics: Age, Gender, Race (often unsaid, but assumed to be white), Education and Household Income.

Most organizations do a very poor job of understanding who their own customers are, never mind their potential customers.

Without doing the research to build a rich profile of those to whom you wish to communicate–what products & technology they own, what media they consume, what their typical day is like, what concerns keep them up at night–you’ll have no hope of divining what compelled them to Like your page…or pay attention to your ad…or read your blog post.

Online analytics provide a quantum leap in insight into what people do online but understanding why they do things requires an intimate understanding of the people themselves.

 

QR CODES: Though I did write last week that I thought Webinars Suck, I certainly try to keep my own from sucking. QR Codes 101 is a presentation I reconfigured to give as a webinar recently; you’ll note that it consists almost entirely of images.

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About David Erickson

David Erickson is principal of e-Strategy Media, a digital marketing consultancy based in Minnesota. David has extensive experience in digital marketing and is often used as an expert source by media and asked to speak on the topic before organizations and to sit on panel discussions.

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