Hint: It’s Not Because
You’re Not Awesome
I’d like to share a dialog with you that I just had with a Facebook friend…
“Hi Kim. I share of lot of your posts, bought books etc,….am I doing something wrong or do you not reciprocate?”
I’ve withheld her name for her own privacy, but I will state that she’s 100% working Herbalife. (I’m cool with Herbalife btw, no bashing please.)
This was originally shared on Facebook and I’m bringing it to the blog because there is a lot of powerful lessons here that others could benefit from.
I invite you to comment and share your thoughts. Am I just being mean?
Below is my response:
You have to accomplish 2 things to be shareable by me …
1) Be producing content that is of a variety that my subscribers expect from me (which means relevant to social marketing training) that is high quality
2) provide a way to follow you that isn’t loaded with promotions
It’s not possible to follow your profile closely because you’re Herbalife all over the place and rarely even just good health content (which I really have little interest in but at least would be more well rounded). Your page has a similar issue. It would be a much stronger page if you were not Herbalife in every post, if it was about better health all around.
Even Kellie Hosaka who runs Kellie Hosaka – Health, Wealth & You (also Herbalife) who has been with me since day one occasionally faces the same issue from time to time. However, she at least does a solid job with making sure she produces a wide range of content that is not Herbalife related. She’s still not easy for me to promote though (and she understands why).
But you simply have a topic that does not interest my readers or I, and is overtly way too promotional.
Please don’t think that it’s a bias against you that I don’t promote health/fitness stuff. One of my best friends is Brankica Underwood who is a certified trainer and I very rarely promote her Fit Chick Project fitness blog either (even though I love it and her). She knows why and it makes sense to her.
However, she does a much better job than you are doing of making sure both her blog and her page are well rounded, not overtly product promotional (though she does have things to sell), and generally welcoming to people using anything to improve their health and fitness. I do however very very very occasionally share her content through twitter because I know that wherever they land on her blog, they will be in a safe place to use whatever works for them and not be overtly pitched repeatedly.
I can not and do not promote things for even a tiny fraction of my readership because it’s just of congruency. Imagine if my friend who builds sheds for a living in New York wanted me promoting his stuff! I also don’t promote for pure reciprocity reasons. The content still has to make the grade or sharing it hurts my readers trust in me.
I can’t fault what you’re doing if its working for you. If you’re getting the results you want that’s cool.
An example of health stuff that is occasionally shareable to my audience is things like Holly Fulford-Jeffrey produces from time to time which is items such as “3 simple workouts for desk workers” or “3 exercises you can do while checking Facebook“, or other things geared at those of us that are online to much and sedentary to much. Holly’s been with me since Day 1 and even in her case much of her content is not shareable by me. Not through fault of her content but just due to topic.
It does not mean she should change anything. This does not mean she is marketing wrong. This does not mean that I don’t love her!
Let’s say that Holly had a book and that book was the item she was most interested in promoting. Following the 80/20 rule of value to promotion, we can quickly see how if Holly mentioned that book in every post she made on her page… that her fan base would quickly grow tired of her and leave. Fortunately, Holly is aware of the 80/20 (or better yet the 90/10) rule and delivers a lot of value, a lot of content that is not directly related to mentioning the book. And thus she acquires a broader fan base who still hear about her book from time to time.
Another example would be my best friend The Goddess Jacqueline Gates – who is someone that I talk with and hang out with nearly every day but who’s style is simply not a match for my audience most of the time. Love this girl so much. Anyone interested in living a happier life and stepping into your female power, needs to meet her.
In the “old days” when all marketing was through outbound channels, blasting our content out was “how it was done”. Today though, things are much more focused on “inbound” channels and that means you need to focus on attracting an audience who voluntarily comes to you rather than blasting at the ones you already have. Nurture existing fans and they spread the word about you!
Even though I’m an avid believer in blog syndication communities and in the power of reciprocity, even within my own syndication community we maintain strict rules that help prevent anyone from having to share content that might be detrimental to their brand.
If you did produce something that would be ideal for me to share – that might be the ONE thing you should inbox me. Because I can’t easily follow you on other channels. However, that’s different than all the random stuff you lately inbox me and I have zero interest in and can’t unsubscribe from.
When you do that to people it’s a quick way to teach people’s brains to ignore stuff from you and to further the odds that you get overlooked in inboxes that get hundreds of emails a day and already have trouble with stuff accidentally getting into the wrong filters.
PS: It’s probably also a good reminder that you should always purchase courses that you truly need. Purchasing from anyone on the hope that they will share your stuff will lead to disappointment out here. Almost none of the people I’ve purchased from repeatedly even know I exist let alone share my stuff. Trying to buy ones way into influence and reach is generally an idea that is met with failure in the long run.
Let me know what you think!