December 02nd, 2010

Why people share content and spread ideas

As a complement to Seth Godin’s ‘Why I Spread Your Idea’, The Social Times identifies 7 specific factors that motivate people to share content with their social networks:

Laughter (or, according to Godin, ‘because it’s funny and laughing alone is no fun’)
Inspiration (comparable to Godin’s ‘I spread your idea because I’m in awe of your art and the only way I can repay you is to share that art with others)
Cuteness (not sure Godin said anything related to ‘cute’)
Originality (’because your idea says something that I have trouble saying directly’)
Shock (’because it’s fun to make another teen snicker about prurient stuff we’re not supposed to see’)
Surprise (’because I feel smart alerting others to what I discovered)
Nostalgia (Godin doesn’t pose a reason that directly speaks to nostalgia for a shared experience, so we’ll take the liberty of saying ‘I spread your idea because it reminds me that we’re connected – we shared an experience in the past)

We’re all in the business of garnering support for our ideas – whether they’re shared via social media, or shared within our diverse tribes (the office, school, our industry, etc.).

A sense for the reasons for why we as humans get behind an idea and encourage others to do the same helps us understand what is likelier to get us recognized and extended – as both brand builders and individuals.

Thanks PSFK.

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