Last night on my way home I was doing some ‘light’ reading on the basic laws of social psychology (okay, maybe not ‘light’) when I came across ‘The Reciprocation Rule’.

This rule, which is based on the human tendency to feel obliged to reciprocate, states that we will repay in kind what we have been given.

‘If someone gives me something, I must give them something in return’. 

This mechanism sits at the very center of what makes us human—the understanding that if you give something you will receive something in return has made sharing, team work and care possible, and given us the freedom to evolve into the social beings that we are.

Now I’ve been mulling something over since reading about this, and I think it’s a curious enough idea to share with you…

If content marketing is based on the idea that you share your knowledge, give your insight and offer your expertise, is reciprocity part of the reason why content marketing is so effective?

Does it work because it plays on our deep-rooted sense of obligation? ‘They’ve shared/given/offered me something so I am therefore obligated to reciprocate when/if I can…’ I.e. by inquiring for more information, working with their business, recommending their services to a friend, etc.

As expert content marketers, we obviously have our own opinions on how and why content marketing works. But it’s always fascinating to hear other opinions…

So, if this has spurred your brain box into action (like it did mine) then I’d love to hear your thoughts on this idea.

Get in touch with me on [email protected] or tweet us on @JTNagency

P.S. While we’re on the subject of content marketing, if it’s something you want to implement into your marketing strategy then check out our done-for-you content packages. I’d be happy to talk you through any of them—just shoot me an email!