We used to say that content was king. Really, it is the user who is king and always has been. The user is the sole, undisputed and perpetual ruler of their own time and attention. In social media, it isn’t the content that’s at the center, it is that the user who liked the content or shared it that is at the center. In social traffic driving, it is that relationship between the sharer and the story that makes us check out the content. We observe first and then look to get information about why our friend thought it was worthwhile. We consume all or part of it along the way, but the users are still kings. They are, after all, the product that publishers try to get advertisers to buy. Advertisers don’t buy stories, they buy the people that look at them – the users.

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