People build relationships based on finding a common ground among each other. Whether it’s a movie, favorite band, coffee drink, or sports team, we establish connections through these common interests, or social objects.
Hugh MacLeod, defines these common interests as social objects. A social object is a product that people can have a conversation about. For example, when Apple created the iPhone, consumers quickly began to connect with other iPhone users, thus, the iPhone became one of Apple’s social objects. In his article, “Social Objects are the Future of Marketing,” he explains how powerful and necessary social objects are to businesses. MacLeod suggests that a company that produces a social object will be more successful than a company without. Social objects also help to increase the significance of social media. Consumers share and chat about products with their friends through tweets, Facebook posts, and blogging. Consumers often share their likes and dislikes of products using social media, companies can then use social media as a way to collect feedback about certain products. Creating social objects is the latest marketing strategy to build successful company, without them a company may not last in our social society.
Here is an excerpt from the article.
The Social Object, in a nutshell, is the reason two people are talking to each other, as opposed to talking to somebody else. Human beings are social animals. We like to socialize. But if you think about it, there needs to be a reason for it to happen in the first place. That reason, that “node” in the social network, is what we call the Social Object.
Example A. You and your friend, Joe like to go bowling every Tuesday. The bowling is the Social Object.
Example B. You and your friend, Lee are huge Star Wars fans. You two invariably geek out about Darth Vader and X-Wing fighters every time you meet. Star Wars is the Social Object.
Example C. You’ve popped into your local bar for a drink after work. At the bar there’s some random dude, sending a text on this neat-looking cellphone. So you go up to him and ask him about the phone. The random dude just LOVES his new phone, so has no trouble with telling a stranger about his new phone for hours on end. Next thing you know, you two are hitting it off and you offer to buy him a beer. You spend the rest of the next hour geeking out about the new phone, till it’s time for you to leave and go meet your wife for dinner. The cellphone was the social object.