“But did you FEEL something?”
That's the one question our COO, Will, asks us every time we show him a final cut of a video. It's a simple but vital question to ask when it comes to putting out content because if you don't feel it, will your audience? And if your audience doesn't get some sort of feeling when viewing your content are they really seeing it?
With users endlessly scrolling on various platforms, it's easy to get distracted and for content to get buried among the noise. Establishing an emotional connection is crucial in today's digital landscape. A 12-year brand value study conducted by Havas group reports that "75% of brands disappear because they did not make the connection". You want your content to be memorable. We're no longer just competing for users' attention; we're competing for the users' affection.
Sure, a pretty picture, cool effect, or transition can grab the user's attention, but what will make them come back to you? What will make them engage with the content and share it with their friends? That's where Will’s question comes back in. That's when you look at it again and ask, "Did you feel it" or better yet, "What did you feel?".
Not to be too philosophical or sound like a visit to the shrink's office, but these are essential questions to ask when creating content or strategizing on a new campaign. The Harvard Business Review reported that brands could establish an emotional connection by creating content that contains emotional motivators. There are over 300 emotional motivators you can use but what the research concludes is that users are emotionally connected when a brand aligns with basic human motivations that can help them fulfill deep unconscious desires such as standing out from the crowd, having confidence in the future and enjoying a sense of well-being. Simple right? We're all just trying to connect to something and see ourselves in our surroundings to try and make sense of the world. So, let’s stop focusing on selling our audience on a product but sell them on a feeling. It’ll take you much further.
We’ve become so accustomed to social technology, making it easy for us to forget its purpose. Instead, we see it as a tool or, a means to share without thinking about the relationship aspect of it. Remember, social media is comprised of two words: social AND media, and the social part is just as important. It’s easy for companies to hop onto the social media bandwagon and think that just posting a picture or a video for the world to see is being social, but that’s not the case. The beauty of social media is the sense of community you can create with your audience, and the only way to do so is to interact with them. You’re only being social on social media if you’re interacting with your audience because that’s how you create and maintain the sense of community. If you look at the most successful social media campaigns, you’ll see that half of the success is because it not only impacts but interacts with their audience. Not convinced? Think of TikTok and how massive it has become as both a social and marketing platform. TikTok blew up because it gave users a sense of community at a time where it felt (and was also physically) out of reach. The functions of the platform along with its design allowed people, brands and even some A-list celebs to feel so connected to one another during a time of complete isolation.
TikTok's mission statement is "to inspire creativity and bring joy". When reading this you see that they're not selling you on the next 'big' thing; they're selling you on a feeling. They're tapping into emotional motivators and the human desire to stand out from the crowd and enjoy a sense of well-being. So next time you catch yourself watching a video, looking at a post, or scrolling on TikTok until the sun rises, ask yourself: "But did I feel something?"