Want to Create Sticky Social Content? Focus on the Good News

This helpful social media hint may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s worth repeating: good news is the stickiest news. We all know that we can’t create truly viral content, no matter how hard we try–but human psychology provides us with some useful hints when it comes to pushing stuff that fans will share with others. And that’s our ultimate goal for our client brands, right?

It’s kind of a counter-intuitive conclusion: viewers love drama and tragedy when it comes to consuming news, but on the social front they’re far, far more likely to share positive, inspiring content. For example, while local and national news is heavy on car crashes, celebrity scandals and armed conflict, many of the most shared New York Times stories don’t concern financial misdeeds or dirty politics–they’re inspiring/fascinating science and health stories like this one about the famous Mediterranean diet or this one about how owls are totally awesome.

Social psychologist and author Jonah Berger explains: “…when you share a story with your friends and peers, you care a lot more how they react. You don’t want them to think of you as a Debbie Downer”. It’s a very relevant quote to every social media manager–even if we knew it already.