Just to be clear, this isn’t a case study demonstrating a phenomenal creative device that drove tons of traffic to my website and then buried me in new business. I know we all are jonesing for the marketing silver bullet that puts us on the map, I am sometimes asked ‘can you get us to go viral?’ and well honestly – ugh, no I can’t.
The truth is that like any relationship – it takes time. The relationship between friends was not overnight trust, the relationships in business aren’t overnight either.
What I want to demonstrate are little victories – those are the ones that add up over time.
Every now and again I write a blog post or article that resonates with enough folks that it generates a good bit of chatter. These often elicit private emails with shares or inquiries. I’ve even gotten emails from professors who ask permission to use my articles for their classes.
I write weekly and although I put a lot of care and thought into each piece, not every one is a home run. Some fall silently into the digital drain, some float on the surface and every once in awhile – one grows feet with running shoes.
What I am experiencing is that no matter what business event I go to these days – when I introduce myself there is recognition. Some folks say “oh, yes, I read your articles all the time” others say “I’ve heard of you.” The point is that even though I can’t translate these wins into a specific ROI (return on investment) it is definitely generating brand and name recognition and possibly even building up my authority (humbly stated). I can correlate some new business as having been influenced by my articles although I wouldn’t say that it was a direct lead.
I’ve been writing for several years so there is some momentum. The first year of my blog I had maybe 10 – 15 subscribers and very little traffic. Over the years this has built up more substantially. I also got some traffic and recognition when I was publishing on e-zine.com and for the past several years have been getting recognition and traffic as a result of the articles published in the New York Enterprise Report.
A slow steady build up. Being consistent, staying on point, and finding new distribution points to promote the articles has begun paying off.
A more recent ‘little victory’ is that I came across an article on Inc. and it was so on-point and well done that I was wowed (jealous I can’t write like that but hey), so I shared it on several of my social sites. I provided a link to the article and stated “Okay this is about the best piece I’ve read on SM – from @inc” Several of my followers clicked the link given my enthusiastic vote, I don’t often give that big of a vote. They read the article, apparently agreed, and shared it with their followers with RTs. Because I acknowledged @inc, they saw my enthusiasm and shared my post with a RT. They have a bigger following than I, and so their readers clicked my link and reacted the way my followers had.
I lost count of how many times that one comment got a RT carrying my Twitter handle across the Twitterverse and so a few things have happened. My Klout score jumped a few points, I gained new followers, and started some new conversations. My website has more traffic coming from Twitter. New followers are looking at some of my other tweets and sharing those as well. There is a bit of buzz happening on Twitter in my account – something every marketer craves.
I’ve been on Twitter for several years, built up about 2,400 followers, and have well over 5,000 tweets – I’ve had some buzz now and again, but like most twitter streams, it is more often a quiet stream. But a win is a win and the lessons learned are:
1. be consistent
2. share generously
3. be authentic
4. be helpful
5. be fair
6. be patient
And if you want to read that Inc. article – I’m glad to share it again. Basic Social Media Mistakes Everyone Makes