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3 social content genres that always catch fire

3 social content genres that always catch fire George Potts

Genre #1: Disgusting and/or anger-inducing content

This genre may be hard for most brands to capitalize on, but there's no denying its ability to create a viral event. Terrorism, crime, NSFW, and controversial content almost always finds some legs on social media because the public loves to be outraged and/or make a difference. Mostly used in news, tabloid publications, or products that benefit from these events (guns, security alarms, etc.), anger-inducing or inappropriate content is a tricky genre to own, but undoubtedly effective.

Genre #2: Cute and/or humorous content

Brands take advantage of this genre all the time, and it is the easiest way to gain a share or click. Animals, babies, comedy, or parody are all positive angles to use for social purposes. People love to laugh and enjoy passing along feel-good content to friends and family, regardless of occupation or what they might have in common. Cute and humorous content almost always brings social media users together.

Genre #3: Content around entertaining utility

Lastly, people love to share content that assists them with hobbies, DIY projects, and other common interests. Brands that produce this kind of social material in a creative and engaging way are producing entertaining utility for fans. This type of content is usually for niche audiences, but those audiences share it actively with each other. Entertaining utility is an ideal route to take if your brand operates in a custom space with a small but passionate fan base.

George Potts, VP and director of social media at Brunner, speaks with iMedia about its collaboration with the commodity brand YellaWood, and the overall way they create social content to spark shareability and excitement with client audiences.

Stellar social media content requires key qualities that a brand or agency should focus on, once you choose a genre to run with. These qualities include:


What are you creating and what are you trying to say? Is it helpful or thought-provoking? How are you presenting it in an engaging fashion? These are all questions that should be asked, that speak to the substance of your content.


How are you saying it? What tone are you using? How does that tone reflect your brand (or does it)? The style or persona that your content communicates is very important to your brand identity. It should be consistent with your company values and front-facing personality.

Social Currency

Finally, is your content providing anything of value to your fans or the social media world? Why should someone share your content? What makes your material important in the first place? You shouldn't be producing content that has no social currency.

George Potts finishes the conversation by explaining the importance of real-time social listening and how fast/relevant responses from brands can help increase social relevance.

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Article written by media production manager David Zaleski and videos edited by associate media producer Brian Waters.

"Fire flames background" image via Shutterstock.

As Brunner's VP, director of social media, George Potts leads the social media discipline, a family of cross-functional teams comprised of advertising creative, public relations, media, and digital professionals who are focused on delivering social...

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