Top Five Tips For Building A Following
How to Get Followers and Grow Your Business
If you are a marketer then you are looking to build a following. A group of people who you can go to time and time again with your latest promotion. Whether that’s an email list or Facebook page, you want to create a relationship with your potential customers so that they are chasing you to buy and you are not chasing them to buy. This is the essence of pull marketing vs push marketing and we can all agree it makes life much easier if you are not having to convince someone to part with their money – instead they want to give it to you because they love what you are doing.
Pull marketing is not some sort of sneaky, mind control, subversive con you are pulling on your customer. You should never be tricking someone or forcing them to buy something that does not bring them any value. The starting point always has to be ‘I have a product that can really help someone who has this need’. You have to believe in your product and be willing to stand behind it. If it’s not going to help anyone and it’s just a way to make a quick buck off someone’s misery, then walk away. Conduct your business with integrity and create something you can be proud of.
Top Five Tips For Building A Following
We are always talking about ‘your why’ and the importance of communicating ‘your why’ to people that come into contact with your business – this is why! You need to have a clear vision of what you want to achieve and that has to be more than ‘I want a lot of money to buy a fancy car’. It has to be something bigger and greater, but also something that is realistic and achievable so that your potential customers can buy into your vision and agree with you that life would be better if your vision was realized. That’s the key. Having a vision for the future that they can share, be a part of and that you can position yourself as the person who will lead them there.
For example: Your vision is to protect the environment by reducing the amount of plastic bottles in landfill.
People love stories. It’s an amazing tool for you to use to unite your following behind a message so they stand ready to fight with you in order to achieve your vision. Think Hollywood epic, think Mel Gibson in Braveheart, think big rousing speeches that get the crowd going wild! It’s all very dramatic, but it works. It gets the blood flowing, it sparks something inside you that says ‘yeah I’ll take a risk because I believe in your vision of a better world’!
The good news is you don’t have to go to these lengths. No one should need to go to war or risk all that they own to buy your product – at least I hope not! All you have to do is get across a message that ‘we are going to come together and make a statement that says we disagree with how things are getting done over there and we believe things could be better if they were done this way’. You are encouraging them to take an action and down the line that action is going to be buying your product as opposed to your competitor’s because your product is going to be better for them.
Example: You tell them a story about how plastic bottles are damaging the environment. About how big companies are not doing enough to reduce this damage. And then issue a rallying call to take action to reduce the amount of plastic bottles that are damaging the environment
You cannot show any signs of uncertainty. You have to be utterly convinced that your product or service is going to help the customer and that making a sale is going to bring them and you closer to achieving your vision. This is why you have to be ethical, honest and authentic. You cannot sell people on a vision you do not believe in or that will cause them harm. You have to believe in what you are doing and talk in terms of certainty. ‘I will’ vs ‘I might be, I’m not sure?’. If you don’t believe, then don’t do it. Find something you can get passionate about, find true value in and then tell your people about it.
Example: You have a solution for storing mineral water that will reduce the amount of plastic bottles thus protecting the environment.
4. Share It
Once you have all of this in place, you can then turn your followers into your recruiters and have them share your messages and vision so that they encourage others to start following you. The easiest way is through shareable content on social media. Give them tweets to re-tweet, pins to re-pin, content to share and like. Make it really easy for them to spread the word and if you have done points 1-3 well then they are going to be really motivated to do your work for you, reaching people that you are not having to pay to reach and bring more qualified followers into your world.
Example: Make use of memes and infographs showing the damage plastic bottles cause the environment with a link back to your site and product.
You have to deliver. If you promise something or raise an expectation then you have to deliver on it. And not just the bare minimum, deliver more than they expect. If you don’t, all this good will that you’ve worked so hard to build up will be gone and not only that, you will have a bad reputation to recover from too. Don’t be just another online marketer who promises the world but ends up disappointing. Be great, keep your following satisfied, excited and watch as your numbers grow.
Example: Show people how by choosing your product they have reduced the amount of plastic bottles and how the environment has benefited from your customer making such a wise choice.
People hate feeling that they are being sold something but by adopting this strategy your whole message to the consumer changes and is now about how you can both come together to protect the environment. This is much more powerful than simply ‘buy this’. This is how you build a loyal following of both buyers and of advocates who will bring more people into your world.
Understand and accept that your solution will not be right for everyone and be ok with letting those people go. Don’t try and convince them into a decision that’s not right for them. Instead focus on the people who you can help, who want to connect with you and share the same values you do.
Be yourself, be genuine, be honest and you will have a magnetic effect meaning people will naturally gravitate towards you. The people who will stay around will be the ones who love what you do, what you stand for and trust you to give them good advice. Therefore when you say to them ‘you should buy this’, they more than likely will! That’s because they trust you. Don’t ever abuse that trust. Only ever promote things that you know will genuinely help people and add value to their life. Create a business you can be proud of.