Leveraging FOMO As a Digital Marketing Tool

Are you familiar with the fear of missing out (FOMO), the first-world problem that seems to affect heavy social media users? If so, then you are also familiar with an immensely popular marketing tool among companies that offer digital marketing services. Digital marketers utilize FOMO to build brand awareness, create qualified leads, and drive sales.

The phrase ‘fear of missing out‘ was coined by a marketing strategist back in the mid-1990s. Dr. Dan Herman came up with it after studying consumer habits and short-term brands. Herman described FOMO as a response to marketing messages based on one’s desire to keep up with everyone else.

What we call FOMO our grandparents referred to as ‘keeping up with the Joneses’. But there is a difference in 2023: digital and online technologies expand our world far beyond immediate friends and neighbors. We can now see what people are doing all over the world. That’s what makes FOMO so powerful.

Interesting FOMO Statistics

Research shows that millennials are more likely to experience FOMO than other age groups. Some 69% of them are affected. Not only that, approximately 40% of them report spending more than they should just to keep up with their friends.

Based on these two statistics, it is reasonable to assume that using FOMO to market can be both good and bad. It’s never good to encourage people to get into debt just to buy your products or services. On the other hand, the FOMO phenomenon creates a very fertile customer base.

Is FOMO among your marketing strategies? If not, here are a few more statistics to consider:

  • 72% of FOMO experiences occur on Facebook
  • 60% of millennials report making purchases because of FOMO
  • 59% of FOMO experiences are related to travel; 56% are related to parties and events
  • 56% of all adults report being afraid they will miss out if they don’t keep up on social media.

One could make the case that social media has fueled the FOMO phenomenon. From Facebook to Twitter, people seem to be constantly checking their social feeds just to see what’s going on. How many times a day do you check yours?

FOMO As a Marketing Tool

So, how can digital marketers use the phenomenon to reach customers? The best way, at least according to Salt Lake City’s Webtek Digital Marketing, is to make use of social media marketing. If social media is where most consumers experience FOMO, that is the place to work it.

Webtek says that FOMO can be leveraged as a marketing tool without always trying to sell something. In fact, this is true of all digital marketing services. Not every marketing message needs to be a sales pitch. Not every message should be. There is a place for building brand awareness and encouraging customer loyalty without actually selling things.

Here are some basic tips:

  • Keep social media posts short and positive.
  • Include relevant information users can like and share.
  • Encourage followers to like, share, and repost.
  • Utilize images that will convey the message better.
  • Link social media posts back to the main website.

The best way to feed FOMO for marketing purposes is to create posts that connect with consumers on a personal level. The stronger the connection, the more likely they are to share that content with others.

Don’t Miss Out on FOMO

If you own a business and you market online (who doesn’t, these days?) don’t miss out on FOMO and its potential to contribute to sales and brand awareness. Figure out how to use it or hire a digital marketing services company that can do the work for you.