Definition of Social Currency

Social currency, in digital marketing, refers to the value and influence a brand or individual gains through their online presence and relationship-building on social media platforms. It is built through engaging content, positive interactions, and establishing credibility that resonates with the target audience. The higher the social currency, the more likely the brand or individual is to be perceived as influential, trustworthy, and valuable within the sphere of online communities.


The phonetic pronunciation of the keyword “Social Currency” is:ˈsoʊʃəl ˈkɜrənsi

Key Takeaways

  1. Social currency refers to the value and influence that individuals gain from their social networks, which is earned through sharing knowledge, experiences, and connections.
  2. Creating shareable content, fostering engagement, and establishing oneself as an expert or thought leader can help to boost social currency, making you more visible and influential in online spaces.
  3. Maintaining a positive personal brand and nurturing relationships within your social networks are crucial components of building and maintaining social currency, as they contribute to increased credibility, trust, and influence.

Importance of Social Currency

Social Currency is an important digital marketing term as it represents the value and influence a brand or individual holds within social media platforms and online communities.

This concept drives social sharing, engagement, and brand affinity, essential factors in today’s digital landscape.

By creating content that generates social currency, businesses can not only expand their reach organically but also foster positive relationships with their target audience, ultimately leading to increased brand awareness, customer loyalty, and potential conversions.

Consequently, understanding and harnessing social currency allows brands to stay ahead in the competitive digital marketing arena and thrive in an increasingly interconnected online world.


Social currency serves a vital purpose in the realm of digital marketing, predominantly because it harnesses the power of social interaction and word-of-mouth, both of which build brand awareness and customer loyalty. At its core, it seeks to elevate a brand or product in the minds of a target audience, by creating meaningful, engaging content that fosters positive association and encourages sharing.

When consumers willingly share content, they essentially “endorse” and amplify its message to their circle of influence, thereby raising not only the odds of further sharing but also the veracity of the message, since it is being shared by someone they trust. As a consequence, the brand becomes more relevant, relatable, and influential within its target market.

One of the main uses of social currency is to enhance brand advocacy, where satisfied customers become proactive brand evangelists, sharing the brand’s message to their contacts on various social networks. This virtual endorsement works toward boosting the brand’s reputation, driving higher engagement, and eventually transforming into measurable results such as increased sales, lead generation, or improved customer retention.

Engaging in initiatives that offer rewards, incentives, or recognition to those who frequently share and promote the brand could further reinforce this behavior. Ultimately, tapping into the potential of social currency not only results in a more appealing brand image, but also enables businesses to expand their reach and positively influence consumer decision-making.

Examples of Social Currency

Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign: Coca-Cola launched a campaign where they replaced their logo on bottles with popular names, encouraging people to share a Coke with friends and family. This campaign allowed consumers to feel a sense of personalization and connection, and sparked conversations on social media as people shared photos of their custom Coke bottles. As a result, this campaign increased Coca-Cola’s social currency, as more people were talking about the brand and engaging with it on social media.

Nike’s Nike+ app: Nike developed an app that tracks and records users’ fitness activities, such as running, walking, and training. The app allows users to set goals and challenges, compete with friends, and share their achievements on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. By providing users with a platform to share their fitness accomplishments, Nike increased its social currency, as more people were talking about and associating their fitness achievements with the brand.

Starbucks’ My Starbucks Rewards program: Starbucks created a loyalty rewards program where customers can earn ‘stars’ or points for every purchase they make. The more stars they accumulate, the more rewards and benefits they can enjoy, such as free drinks, food items, or special discounts. The program encourages customers to share their experiences and rewards on social media platforms, thus increasing Starbucks’ social currency. The My Starbucks Rewards program not only helps build customer loyalty but also drives word-of-mouth marketing as satisfied customers share their experiences online.

Frequently Asked Questions about Social Currency

1. What is Social Currency?

Social Currency is a term used to describe the value that people gain from social interactions and sharing on social media platforms. It is a form of capital that individuals can use to build reputation, gain social influence, and foster relationships with others in their networks.

2. What are the elements of Social Currency?

Social Currency is typically built on six primary elements: Affiliation, Identity, Conversation, Advocacy, Information, and Utility. These elements contribute to an individual’s perceived value and influence within their social circles.

3. How can one build Social Currency?

Individuals can build their Social Currency by engaging with others, contributing valuable content, participating in conversations, and being responsive in their networks. This can include sharing information, insights, and experiences on social media or collaborating with others in online communities and discussions.

4. How can businesses use Social Currency to build brand loyalty?

Businesses can leverage Social Currency by creating share-worthy content, encouraging conversations and engagement around their brand, and promoting a sense of affiliation and connectedness among their customers. By fostering positive and meaningful interactions, businesses can strengthen their brand loyalty and cultivate long-term relationships with their audience.

5. What is the role of Social Currency in influencer marketing?

Social Currency plays a crucial role in influencer marketing, as it helps to determine the potential reach and impact of an influencer within their network. Individuals with high Social Currency are more likely to have a larger audience, greater engagement, and a stronger influence on their followers, making them valuable marketing partners for brands seeking to expand their reach and visibility.

Related Digital Marketing Terms

  • Brand Advocacy
  • Online Engagement
  • Influencer Marketing
  • Referral Campaigns
  • User-Generated Content

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