Want More? Give More!
Recently I have been seeing lots of complaints on Twitter and blogs around the people who are spreading schemes that are essentially tricks to artificially increase your Twitter follow count, or inflate your feedburner numbers.
OK, there is an ego boost, and a “social proof” benefit to a large follow or subscriber count, but if those people don’t exist, or worse don’t want to be there, how much value will you get really?
If you are wanting to gain more and better attention, and increase both the size and quality of your subscriber list, then you are going to have to take some action. That means giving real value.
On my blog I give away free ebooks, but an ebook (or even two) is not enough. They can’t be fluff, they can’t skimp on value. People need to both anticipate value and have that expectation rewarded. Tricking people to subscribe would put us right back at square one, with the added problem of bad word of mouth. Give really solid and usable information though and you are on your way to creating fans.
A client of mine who goes way above and beyond is Richard Reardon. He advises CEOs and top level managers about business and sales. Not only has he set up a free ebook but he is also rolling out teleseminars and lots more. Check out his subscribe page here – think that promises some value? I think so.
Rather than wonder how you can increase some abstract point scoring number, instead think of the people you are trying to attract and what you can do for them. Think of what you can offer that will be both inticing and solid value. You will be given much more immediate benefit for your efforts, and rewarded in the long term.
Chris is a professional blogger and internet marketing consultant. You can get more of his blogging tips, internet marketing advice and copywriting articles and a FREE ebook just by subscribing at chrisg.com
That fact shows that the economic law of supply and demand are applying everywhere, though in different and more complicated forms, like blogs. People are not stupid, they can choose which and when to subscribe to a blog. It makes the real deal is getting more interesting, isn’t it?
Yup, when there are a million blogs to choose from, ask yourself why someone ought to choose yours :)
I completely agree. I’m still working out the kinks as to what I can offer my readers that other web design blogs (there are probably a million of them) can’t.
Right now I haven’t come up with very much, other than my personal view, which quite frankly isn’t worth very much.
I appreciate the insight into the artificial subscriber numbers. It’s similar to creating a forum and having fake users post there so that it appears populated, giving other users an incentive to sign up… It’s shady and somewhat unethical, but it can work.
Way to bring it Chris! Excellent post, it is a give and take situation, supply and demand as pointed out.
It seems 2009 is the year of finding out what value we can create for others on the blogs, in other social media like twitter. I have written a few posts about positive value, as well as read several blogs with similar posts.
It’s all about creating value for YOUR networks, whether they are readers, commenters, twitter followers or facebook fans. But it goes much beyond that – customers, clients, employees, managers/bosses – we need to create value in a positive way for all of them to truly gain their trust, their interest and develop a meaningful relationship with them.
@Big Slick – It can help tip people over into joining, but the value has to be there to keep them, and stop them feeling a fool for being suckered
@Bill – Yup, meaningful relationship is the key – people might follow you initially out of curiosity, but how do you reward them?
I agree with your post. Most blog try to tract new people, but don’t care a lot about how many of the new readers stay for the long haul.
Chris – A hearty AMEN!!!
Dale Carnegie was telling smart business people DECADES ago that the best way to get what you want is to help other people get what they want. Newsflash for Web 2.0 dwellers – You help other people get what they want by providing value – not scamming and scheming!!!
I don’t think we can bang that drum too long or too loudly!!!
Couldn’t agree more! Finally someone standing up to the ‘follow 3,000 people so you can get 1500 followers’ trend.
It’s so true that you can’t trick people into subscribing. I run art giveaways on my blog and ask people to subscribe to be entered into the giveaway. There are other ways to enter to that do not involve needing to subscribe.
I’m slowly building. I’;m finding the people who followed me in the beginning are much different than the people who follow me now as my content has evolved into a more art related scene.
Anyhow, Happy Valentine’s Day Blog Herald! :)