Are you a stats fiend? I’ve never been much of a fan of stats myself, but there is one stat I’ve been unable to avoid in the Social Media world lately. Statistically, as you get to know more people, your blog views, your blog comments, and reactions to your tweets increase. Crazy, right? But how do you get there? Maybe you’re looking at a Twitter stream that seems more like a trickle right now. Maybe you look at other people interacting, other groups, other communities, and you’re thinking, “I just can’t envision how I’m ever going to get there.” You can get there. Here are ten ways to make it happen.
1. On Twitter, make sure that for every 1 tweet that you send out of your own, there are around 12 responses or promotions of other people. This is a tip from Chris Brogan, and while you don’t need to be super strict about the number 12, the key is to make sure that the ratio is definitely slanted outwards rather than inwards. This proves that you want to engage, it shows that you will promote others, and it allows you to show your personality.
2. Speaking of personality, be yourself. My friend Jillian recently wrote a post comparing Social Media to a 24/7 networking luncheon. It’s a brilliant analogy! Be friendly, be warm, but be professional, too.
3. Try to talk to 1 new person every day. Especially when you get started, this is a great way to interact with new people and to begin building relationships. For every person you meet, you are opening doors to access new perspectives, new people, and new communities.
4. Look for people with similar interests. One of the best ways to do this is to find communities that exist around specific common interests. For example, if you love blogging, attending #blogchat is a no-brainer. If you’re a B2B marketer, B2BChat is a no-brainer. The footwork has been done for you. You already know you have something in common with everybody.
5. Comment on and tweet out peoples’ blog posts. Draw a connection between your presence in the blogosphere and your presence on Twitter. Leave a thoughtful comment on a post to let the blogger know you really read and thought about his or her post, then go over to Twitter and promote it. Double the love makes anyone happy.
6. Don’t just talk about business. Get to really know people. Look for hints that people leave about their lives. If someone mentions that a daughter just got accepted to Julliard, respond with a hearty congratulations. If you learn of a loss, offer your condolences. These are easy, human, common sense things to do, but they are difference-makers.
7. Answer questions. People often use Twitter as a way to find out important information -it’s a natural platform for crowdsourcing, after all. If you see someone asking a question and you know the answer or you know someone who could answer, make sure you tweet it out. It’s really nice when you can recommend someone else, because then you’re helping 2 people at once, plus anyone “listening” who might have had the same concern or question.
8. Ask questions. Just as many people use Twitter to find out information, many people enjoy answering questions for other people. Sure it serves their own good, but people are generally good hearted and like to help. If you don’t get an answer, that’s okay. You might get responses from other people who have the same question and you can create community that way.
9. Don’t be a lurker or a wall-flower. The temptation is there just to dip your toe in, but unfortunately, you can’t build a community that way. You have to get out there and show people who you are and why they should take time out of their busy days to talk to you or read your blogs. There are very few mind readers in the Social Media space, you’ll find out.
10. Respond to other comments you see on blogs that you visit. Often times, there will be an overlap between a person’s blog community and a person’s Twitter community. Get to know those people in one place and you can likely carry it over into another platform. This doesn’t mean to pick fights with other commenters, by the way. It just means that if you like a comment, say so instead of just clicking “like.” It means as much to the commenter as it does to the blogger, certainly.
Have you tried some of these steps but you just aren’t seeming to get any traction? Do you have questions about any of these ideas? Go ahead and let me know in the comments!
Image by tim & annette. http://www.sxc.hu/profile/mexikids