Want to know how to stand out online or offline?
Do you believe the hype that Content Is King?
I would argue that while content (product) is important, how you deliver that product and how you serve (engagement) is even more important.
After all my years in sales management, I am still blown away at the number of people and companies who sell virtually the same types of products to the same people in the same ways and wonder why they can’t seem to make a splash.
Online, I’m sad to say, it’s even worse. There are so many blogs broadcasting the same messages to the same audience using the same methods that there is a term for the phenomenon: The Echo Chamber.
What exactly is it about your blog or online business that makes me want to abandon the 75-ba-jillion others in your market and hitch my wagon to your star?
(I have an answer for you, but we’ll get to that in a bit.)
Quality Matters, But It’s Not All That Matters
You can find information all over the web that says,
“Content is King! Just write great content consistently and the world will find you.”
I’m going to have to call B.S. on that one.
That’s like saying that if a burger joint in your neighborhood uses the highest quality ground beef that it will eventually be the most successful burger joint in town.
The truth is that a quality product matters – but not more than how you deliver it. Therefore…
Corbett Barr, creator of Think Traffic, is (in my opinion) one of the top experts in the field of online content creation and traffic generation. As a fan and follower of his, I have heard him say over and over that great content is the price of admission these days…not the total solution.
So back to the question: What makes you different that the thousands or millions of other people in your niche?
Only you can be you. Only you can interact with people the way that you can interact with them. Let’s talk about how you can leverage that, shall we?
Broadcasting vs. Engagement
Long before I even considered starting a blog, I’ve followed Paul Castian of YourSalesPlaybook.com
Paul is ridiculously efficient at social media and has a huge, loyal following. If you asked Paul, he would tell you that one reason for his social media success is that he engages people instead of just blasting his promotional messages like others do.
Remember the Echo Chamber – Everyone writing the same kind of content and blasting it out to the world in the same ways?
Paul calls that broadcasting. Constantly broadcasting your message out to the world just becomes part of the noise that is already so prevalent. If that’s your only move, you will blend in. Blending in is for wallpaper, not you.
Granted, you need to get your message out, but you also need to show people that you’re a real human who is accessible to them.
The way to make people more receptive to you and your message is through engagement.
What’s The Difference?
Broadcasts are low on interaction and high on the “I talk, you listen” mentality.
Think of a radio station playing in the background at a large party. A few people may be paying attention to it, a few more may not be paying attention but still realize it’s on, and the majority of the people probably aren’t hearing it at all.
Now imagine at that same party that there is a live DJ playing music instead of the radio station. Every so often, the DJ calls a guest by name and asks them what they would like to hear. Maybe he even talks with them in front of everyone. How many people are paying attention now? Quite a different scenario, isn’t it? That’s engagement.
5 Tips For Better Online Engagement
1) When you sell, having a set process or pitch is a good thing, but make the effort to personalize it.
One size does not fit all. Ask questions of your prospects and make suggestions based on their unique situations. Then provide personal, targeted solutions.
2) Try not to live and die by your autoresponder series.
I have unsubscribed from so many of these lately it’s not even funny. People don’t mind being on the receiving end of these, but if that’s all they ever hear from you, guess what? Unsubscribe. Make sure to mix in some conversational update emails and newsletters. People want to feel like they know you beyond the constant sales pitches.
3) Use Email Frameworks
When a new reader subscribes to my email list here at Reboot Authentic, they do get an automatic thank you from my mail list. However, they also get an email from me that I type myself using what I call a framework. I call it that because it’s a Word document containing just the frame of an email in bullet point form that reminds me of what I want to say. That way, each new subscriber gets an email covering similar points, but is also personalized with things about their site, or a recent Tweet, or something else specific to them. When people realize that it’s not a canned copy-and-paste email, they take the time to write back.
4) Use Social To Serve
Use social media to serve. Send out quotes that people in your target audience would appreciate. Post tips that are valuable to your target market. When you see people post things about their personal accomplishments, congratulate them. When you see them post about their trials, console them and offer your help. Follow your followers! Share their content and help them engage others.
5) People Are People, Not Numbers
It’s true that there are ridiculous numbers of people online. That doesn’t make it ok to treat everyone the same and hope that due to the vast number of people out there somehow enough of them will stick. Get to know them.
What About You?
Tell us about how you engage your audience.
Share a story of how you built a great relationship through engagement.
Or just say hello and start engaging us right now!