I really feel like I’m dating myself here, but way back when I was getting started online (2008), there were a lot fewer tactics people could try to market and grow their businesses.
Social media was still in its early stages (i.,e, FB ads didn’t exist yet), and you could gain a lot of traction through organic sharing on social platforms.
On one hand, those were kind of “the good ol’ days.” On the other hand, because it was new and these platforms weren’t monetized yet, it was kind of like anything worked… including crummy content.
The ONE thing that has stayed consistent and will always work when it comes to marketing and growing your business is focusing on people and relationships.
This is one of the reasons I’m such a huge fan of podcasts.
Having started podcasting in 2013 for the simple reason of wanting to have more fun opened so many doors for me… that there was no way I could have seen these opportunities prior to jumping in.
My podcast is a mix of solo episodes and interviews.
As much as I love doing the solo shows, it was the interviews that were the game-changer (and got more people listening to the solo shows).
In other words, relationships first.
I reached out to people I didn’t have a relationship with but were in the WordPress space (my podcast was originally called “The WordPress Chick Podcast,” now it’s “The Kim Doyal Show”).
The beauty of interviewing someone is that it’s simply a “give,” – meaning I’m using my platform to share their message. It’s all about them.
It’s a huge win-win.
You get to highlight someone else and share them with your audience. You also create new content and, ideally, a relationship with someone that becomes a friend or at least someone you can refer people to or do business with later down the line.
This is actually how Jodi and I connected ????.
She heard me on the podcast and reached out; we hopped on Skype (pre-Zoom days) and stayed in touch over the years. Never in a million years when we connected did either of us see launching an e-commerce company with a physical content planner!
Stay open to the possibilities while being detached from any specific outcome.
Let’s jump into the 3 ways relationships can help you get more reach from your content.
1. Highlight or Feature Other People on Your Website
This is probably one of my favorites (and one I’m a little behind in doing).
I do this on my personal brand whenever I interview someone for my podcast. I’ve also got a post to finish (marketers to follow in 2021 – before it ends up becoming a midyear post).
I talked about this in greater length in my post, “Try this Post Idea for Traffic, Engagement, and Content.”
The idea is simple.
Share the people you follow, admire, read, watch, or listen to. You can make this a post featuring one person or highlight a group of people based on a specific theme (social media, authors, podcasters, etc.).
The trick here is not to be stingy.
Meaning, give them a link back (many people have Google alerts set up for their name so that anytime they’re mentioned, they get a notification).
Too many people are afraid to give ‘do-follow’ links.
I don’t care what the search engines like (note: linking is a huge part of ranking higher in the search engines); this is goodwill that can pay off for years to come.
Reach: there is a high probability that the people you highlight or feature on your site are going to share your content. We all like to see and hear our own names.
There’s nothing like paying it forward to say thanks.
2. Quote other people
It’s probably not a huge secret that I’m a fan of most inspirational things. I love a good quote as much as the next person.
However, what if you quoted someone who isn’t a big name?
As an example, as much as I love him, Seth Godin isn’t hurting for recognition (he’s earned it all, no judgment).
But the likelihood of Seth commenting or sharing your content is probably slim to none.
What if you flipped that and quoted someone you actually know?
Better yet, what if you tagged them when you shared your post and used their quote as an image?
“It costs you to NOT be who you are”— Allegra Sinclair
See what I did there?
Allegra Sinclair is a friend and fellow marketer. I love what she does and how she moves through the world (check her out here and do yourself a favor and listen to her podcast on courage).
3. Engage with other people and comment on their stuff!
Is it just me, or does anyone else think we need to start bringing the conversations and comments back to the blog? (Feel free to leave a comment here, by the way ????).
I tend to comment more on social and Medium, where I’m an avid reader, but whenever I can, I also try to share someone else’s work with the world or simply let them know how I feel about their work.
Side note: if you don’t agree with someone, move on. You’re not helping them (nor will pointing out that they’re wrong to convince them to see another point of view), and you’re simply going to make yourself feel like crap.
Here are a few simple ways you can engage with people:
It’s kind of crazy when you look at how simple these things are and yet we often overlook them because we “don’t have the time.”
A little investment of your time today will start compounding tomorrow.
Don’t overthink this, have some fun and start connecting.