You have heard the phrase, “pay attention.” You may have even joked, “I can’t afford to pay attention.” I heard these words this week in a different context and it made me stop and think. This is the way it read:
Whoa. Let that sink in.
You can hire the big guns and the fancy pants to put your name up in lights, or you can do the things that garner attention and earn the right to be heard (I’m assuming you probably can’t afford the big guns; I know I can’t).
I also read someone else’s blog post this week about using social media for promotion, and its pros and cons. It garnered many comments about which platforms were working and which ones were unusable. More than anyone realized, it also revealed a lot about the users.
This is some of my comment (edited for space). I’m sharing it here, not to teach about Twitter as I’m still learning, but because it illustrates the above point.
“I’ve had a different experience regarding Twitter. But it took me a long time to jump in. I read much about how to use it first. I’ve done this as I’ve added anything to my “to do” list, rather than try to do everything at once.
I have less than 300 followers, but I’ve seen increase in traffic. Be selective about who you follow. Look for readers. Find bloggers in various subjects and other creative people rather than other writers only.
Twitter is social. You won’t see value if, like the people you saw, only tweet “buy my book, or service.” Instead, do those kinds of things rarely. Do have a website link in your profile, but then focus on being useful. When you find a helpful website or a quote that inspires you, pass them on.
Re-tweet other people. Direct message people telling them what you like in their tweets. If you love blogging, tweet your most interesting posts rather than just your service (catchy titles help). People will find the rest.
Only make every 5th to 10th tweet about your product. I now have a file where I drop quotes, websites, programs etc. In this way, I don’t have to take a lot of time to post a useful thought. I do this in everyday life; when I find something helpful, I tell someone.
Having said that, I’ve gotten the most increase from groups in LinkedIn. But again, you can’t just drop in and post your links. You have to ask and answer questions and participate. Even when you post a link, you can post a related question or thought with it.”
My conclusion is this: It comes down to being social.
Social networks may be set-up for both business and social connections, but they are not ad networks. Advertising has also changed. Even with a great product, blurting out an ad and yelling “Buy now!” doesn’t work as well as it used to. People want to know something about a business or person before they spend money with them.
If you’re social first, you’ll find people being more interested in what you do. It’s similar to speaking first (providing a service) and then having a book table at the back of the room. This same social aspect is also true of blogs.
This approach is harder, but it’s what works.
I am still learning from others, but I hope I’ve given you something to chew on.