Even the most superficial social media activity is driven by a human need. As a brand you need to be asking why people interact the way they do. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is still ever relevant to life, though maybe with the addition of Wi-Fi.
5 Human Needs
Diversion (hang out, escape, be creative, have fun)
This is the need state that drives desirability for brands. 40% of people who say they want entertaining experiences from brands say that these experiences make the brand more desirable.
Recognition (self-promotion, change opinions, express yourself, earn respect)
This is the key need state for making consumers loyal to brands. 65% of people who wants brands to respond to their complaints say that it makes them feel valued as customers when they do.
Relationship (belong, stay in touch, share knowledge)
This is the key need state for driving recommendation. If a brand enables someone to help others they are also more likely to recommend it to others.
Progression (make money, build a career)
This is the key need state for encouraging people to spend more time with a brand. 37% of people who want brands to help them develop their own skills and abilities want to spend more time with the brand as a result.
Learning (seek opinion, explore, keep up to date and learn)
To drive sales a combination of Recognition and Learning is key. Educating people about your product whilst at the same time listening to their own needs makes consumers far more likely to buy your product.
Why Join a Brand Community?
Top reasons why customers will join a brand community (email newsletter, forum, social follow/fan):
- Learn more about it
- Feel part of a like-minded community
- Share my appreciation with others
- It was recommended to me
- Get free content
- Fill time/have fun
- Develop my skills
- Support a cause I like
- Associate with something I think is cool
- Get a personal response to an issue/complaint
- Contact companies, influence development
- Get advance news about products
- Seek more
The challenge is to find where the brand objectives and consumer needs meet. When a brand finds a consumer need, when fulfilled also meets the brand objective – this is called the value exchange.
It is value exchange that we need to put at the heart of our communication, as only when communication is successful will the consumer go beyond the campaign activity and build a lasting relationship.