Have you ever wondered why someone shared that product, coupon, or offer on social media? People share products, promotions, and deals because it helps them grow and cultivate relationships.
Imagine for a moment that you are a club member at two different wineries, Winery A and Winery B, and this morning you received an email from both of them about the upcoming monthly wine club shipment. Which of the following emails would you be more likely to tell your friends about?
Winery A, sends you their monthly wine club member email notifying you of the wines that will be included in this month’s shipment. The email includes some tasting notes about the wines and some details about upcoming events happening at the winery.
Winery B, sends you an email thanking you for their continued commitment to receiving their wine on an on-going basis. Included in this email is also an offer, free club membership for the next 12 months when someone you refer becomes club member.
Clearly Winery B’s email is more likely to be shared by their club members because contains relational content – value that can be obtained from the relationship between the giver and the receiver – a free membership for the giver and discounted purchases and satisfaction for the receiver.
According to Communication Unbound there are three principals to relational communication:
- Through communication, people define their identities
- Communicators construct a shared vision of reality when people interact with one another, and it provides the basis for people being able to make sense of one another.
- Relationships develop a life of their own.
Taking these principals into account, merchants can improve their understanding of what motivates their customers to act. With this knowledge in hand one can skillfully create relational content and promotions, that motivate their customers to take action and to share.
Before you jump into creating content for that next email campaign, new product, or promotion, run a quick search on FB or Twitter and see how your customers are sharing your products and content with their network. Armed with this new social context and understanding you’ll be better prepared to create content that prospers in a social economy.