I got some attention last week. More than I was expecting. In order to make sense of it all, I thought I’d tell you guys how I got there.
- I networked like there was no tomorrow: I looked for the communities that fit my interests, and I tried to engage those communities. If a community was missing, I helped found it. I did it for selfish reasons, because it helps me to get feedback on some of my ideas. I also did it for unselfish reason, because I like connecting people. A joke even sprung out of how relentless I am about helping people connect. Betsying a question is sometimes better than Googling it. I’m not only going to find you the information you need. I’m also going to connect you with a new contact that will help you find that information faster in the future. Those that knew I do this (I’ve always kept it quiet so that I don’t get inundated) tended to trust me and this trust put me in a position that set me up to do other thing in the space.
- I listened: I think those close to me know that the impetus behind the project I unveiled last week had a lot to do with finding something to take my mind off of personal problems, but I’m not a fan of doing things that are a total waste of my time. What started the thought of doing something like this in my head was when Peter Shankman listed me, along with others, in a HARO email as someone that tweeted “interesting and worthwhile things”. Before I mentioned anything to anyone outside of a couple of emails, it was mentioned in a tourism Facebook group and garnered a ton of likes. That touched me and made me start thinking of how many members of our community get next to no recognition for their hard work. And then this small business influencers list started getting tweeted out by a lot of people. With a few tweaks on my part, I had found my answer. So, I listened to what was missing from our community and found a solution that would fill that need.
- I worked my butt off: Two and a half weeks… Each day was filled with a 5 am wake up and staring at data until my eyes couldn’t take it anymore. I also taught myself how to work with the Twitter API, but mostly I just worked with the data that I had grabbed from making calls to it. It was hard work, especially since I was learning things on the fly. That’s basically what all of social media is: working hard and learning things on the fly. And nothing is going to come from your presence unless you can do both at the same time.
- I took advantage of my network: Anybody that knows me knows that I hate asking favors. It’s one of my biggest flaws. However, after two and a half weeks of work, I made the decision to share the list. I shared it in a Facebook group that was likely to share it because many of the members were on the list. I also put it on Twitter, but Facebook actually gave an alert to a lot of members of the list whereas sharing it on Twitter did not. I also tagged the number one person on the list on a Facebook post on my wall. All of these little efforts were what got everything rolling.
- I thanked every single person that I saw commented, posted or tweeted the list: This is simple. Thanking people makes you seem like less of a faraway person and/or bot and turns you into someone that people can talk back to. Although the list opened the door, the thank you really started relationships. I have more people in my network that are willing to do work on my behalf just because I said those two simple words. You’re never too big or too small to be gracious.
That is everything I did to produce ONE successful blog post. Will every blog post I write get this kind of treatment? No. If it took me two and a half weeks to write every single blog post, I’d give up now. The posts that I enjoy writing the most and garner me the most success, however, do take more time than just the writing. They have to be worked and when that work is done well, you end up with more than just a successful blog post.