We are living in a social media world where trends drive behaviors and what’s most interesting to us is not riding the wave, but instead understanding where and why such waves occur in the first place. This applies to everything from the Popeyes chicken sandwich craze to the epic GameStop short squeeze that will live on forever.

Imagine looking at a shiny object like a stunning diamond ring in the window of a jewelry store in Beverly Hills then get that feeling you must have it one day, you take a picture, and it becomes one of your dreams. Clearly if you’re in Beverly Hills and see this piece being featured it’s what you must have – or maybe not.

Looking at social media behaviors and “influencers” nowadays the same mentality applies, though it’s skewed in many ways. The jewelry store window showing something real/tangible has turned into someone’s Instagram or TikTok feed where they’re showing you the products, restaurants, etc. that are trending and you should want as well. Tapping into the classic “herd mentality” where most people see the hype and get the fear of missing out (FOMO), so they take part.

This cycle of behaviors on social media is one factor driving hundreds of billions of dollars in revenue for companies each year, and being influencers ourselves in a variety of spaces that have guided the biggest companies in the world we decided to dig into this deeper.

And after analyzing thousands of social media campaigns it’s interesting to see how optics are essentially what made them successful; or not. For example, a post on Instagram launching a new product with 100 likes and 5 comments isn’t sexy, however a post with 3,000 likes and 500 comments makes you either consciously or subconsciously feel something special is going on and therefore want to like, comment, follow.

We’ll be publishing more data on this study soon, though in a nutshell: Humans look at social media metrics immediately and are almost programmed to see that first before deciding to engage. A post with 3k likes appearing in their feed gets a quick like from them versus a post with 3 likes will get no love.

More info on this to come. Stay tuned.