Build a Permission Asset, Part 3

NOTE: be sure to read part 1 and part 2 of this post series before continuing!

– – –

Welcome back!

Today is our final post in the series about Building a Permission Asset.

Just to recap: we’ve already learned about what a permission asset is, how to asset your current status and tools for building it.

Now we’re going to talk about the two most difficult challenges: PATIENCE and PROTECTION.

Yes. Building a permission asset takes time. LOTS of it.

See, notwithstanding our instant-gratification culture, your permission asset isn’t something you just “get.”

You can’t download off iTunes. Or find it on Craig’s List. Or buy it from some random college kid in your neighborhood.

It takes time. Work. Maintenance.

And most of all, patience. Because some people won’t want to give you permission asset right away. And some people won’t want to give permission EVER.

With that in mind, let’s wrap things up with several patience and precautionary measures to protect your permission asset during the long haul:

1. Privacy. While giving their email address to you is technically “free,” customers are still concerned about getting spammed. So, make certain people understand your intentions at the onset. Let them know you will NOT be sharing their information. Respect always wins.

REMEMBER: Attention is the most powerful form of currency.

2. Get it early. Whether it’s in marketing (or a one-on-one conversation) you can never get permission too early. The biggest regret you will EVER have in marketing is, “Damn it! I should have been collecting people’s emails sooner!” It’s not too late – you can start TODAY.

REMEMBER: Broadcast your uniqueness, make the mundane memorable, turn strangers into friends, friends into FANS and fans into word of mouth. Now!

3. Think long term. Look upstream. Consider the lifetime value of ONE fan. Think about how many friends they could potentially tell. Most importantly, think about how valuable your relationship with them could potentially grow.

REMEMBER: There are no one-night stands with your permission asset.

4. Consistency. Whether your permission asset is supported by an ezine, podcast or blog, you MUST deliver value. So, remind your fans WHY they follow you. Also, ask for their input, ideas, feedback and comments. Maintain a continuous dialogue with them. Because:

The more involved they are, the more ownership they take.
The more ownership they take, the more people they tell.
And the more people they tell, the bigger your permission asset (and, ultimately, your following) grows.

REMEMBER: Consistency is far better than rare moments of greatness.

5. Gratitude. Because your permission asset is so valuable, and because a following is NOTHING without followers, make sure you regularly thank your fans how much you value their loyalty (aka, permission). Offer them specials and discounts. Go out of your way connect with them via email, phone, or if possible, in person!

REMEMBER: Practice proactive gratitude. That which you appreciate appreciates.

6. Leverage. Once your permission asset hits a critical mass (1,000, 5,000, 10,000, for example) you will earn more opportunities to leverage it. The bigger your permission asset is, the more you can ask people for.

REMEMBER: Some people on your list may buy at a later time, simply because you stayed in front of them. Leverage your increasing momentum.

7. Respect. A few years ago, I emailed the aforementioned permission guru, Seth Godin. I asked him what he thought the most important word in marketing was. His answer was, “Respect.”

So, when it comes to your permission asset, never, ever, ever, ever, E-V-E-R disrespect or violate the trust of your fans. If they want off your list, respect their choice and gracefully remove them. Don’t take it personally.

REMEMBER: R-E-S-P-E-C-T!!!

8. Value. Your content – be it text, audio or video – needs to be relevant, interesting, focused, smart, concise and remarkable. Most importantly, it needs to be delivered in a unique way. You need a voice. A lens. A thing. A philosophy.

I think author and blogger extraordinarine Guy Kawasaki said it best, “It’s impossible to build community about mundane writing.”

REMEMBER: YOU. ARE. A. WRITER.

9. Patience. Don’t expect to get 500 subscribers in your first week. Have patience. Boost your list one fan at a time. The good news is, once you get past a certain number, you’ll begin to grow exponentially.

But, the (sort of) bad new is, building your permission asset never ends. You’re in it for the long haul. Better be passionate!

REMEMBER: There ain’t no finish line.

– – –

NOTE: Even with all the tips, suggestions and ideas you’ve read in these past three posts, there’s still one additional challenge to recognize: What if, no matter how hard you try, some people just WON’T give you permission?

Unfortunately, that IS going to happen. No matter what business you’re in, no matter what type of permission asset you’re building, some people just won’t give it up.

AND MY THOUGHT IS: Respect that. All you can do is your absolute best to deliver value and be yourself.

If someone is hesitant to give you permission, persistently (but not annoyingly) remind them about the security, privacy and respect of doing so. Educate them about the value of giving you permission. Don’t sell too much or too often and don’t annoy or bother them.

If that doesn’t work, back off. Don’t take it personally. Perhaps YOU are not the right person to convince them. Perhaps, over time, they will be convinced or evangelized by an existing member of your permission asset.

“You still haven’t subscribed to Janet’s weekly ezine? Man, you’re missing out! Last week’s article saved me thousands of dollars!” says one of your raving fans.

If that (still) doesn’t work, maybe it’s time to let that person go and move on.

There are plenty of other fish in the Permission Sea.

– – –

So, as we come to the end of our three-day discussion, I wanted to share one final example.

This is my favorite illustration (no pun intended) of the power of building a permission asset.

Scott Adams.

You know, the creator of Dilbert!

He runs the most successful, most widely read and highest syndicated comic strip in the world.

o His comic strips are read by millions of people every day.
o He gets 200-300 comments PER POST on his daily blog. (Holy Technorati Batman!)
o He’s published dozens of bestselling books.
o His line of Dilbert merchandise makes millions every year.
o His scores of fans rearrange their schedules just to come out to his book signings and events.
o His speaking fee is $50,000.
o He is the CEO of Scott Adams Food, Inc., maker of the Dilberito & Protein Chef.
o He won the National Cartoonist Society Reuben Award and Newspaper
Comic Strip Award.
o He received the NCTE George Orwell Award for Distinguished Contribution to Honesty and Clarity in Public Language.
o He’s been in the rankings of the “50 Most Influential Management Thinkers” placing 31st in 2001, 27th in 2003 and 12th in 2005.

But here’s the best part.

Scott Adams was the first syndicated cartoonist who published his email address on all his cartoons.

Initially, he did it in the hopes that people would email jokes to him.

Which they did.

Eventually, he started asking these people who emailed him if they wanted to occasionally hear from him via his an ezine.

Which they did.

WHICH MEANT: they gave Scott Adams permission.

WHICH MEANS: he built (and continues to build) his permission asset.

WHICH PROVES: he who has the biggest list (and, the best relationship with that list) wins.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How many people art anticipating YOUR marketing?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Seriously, you need to read Seth’s book.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

…only 21 more days until NametagTV.com goes ON AIR!

Build a Permission Asset, Part 2

NOTE: be sure to read part 1 of this post before scrolling down!

– – –

OK guys, let’s continue our discussion on building a permission asset.

Today we’re going to explore a list of 18 questions to help you assess the status of your current permission asset.

(Don’t worry, you don’t have to answer them all right away!)

But, some are yes/no, some are VERY penetrating, and some of these questions are going to make you grin, shake your head say, “Damn it!”

But that’s good. That means there’s (still) room to make your permission asset even stronger!

Here we go:

1. Are you being selfish with your knowledge?

2. Do you get the email of every customer?

3. Do you have customers or fans?

4. How do you provide a value message to your customers every week?

5. How are you building a following?

6. How are you measuring your permission asset?

7. How are you staying in front of your fans?

8. How do you collect email addresses from the people who come to your website?

9. How do you get permission from people to market to them?

10. How many people are anticipating your marketing?

11. How many ezine subscribers do you have?

12. How many RSS subscribers do you have?

13. How quickly do you get permission from strangers?

14. If you were your customer, what would you LOVE to have from you next?

15. Is your marketing interrupting or interacting?

16. Is your marketing making music or noise?

17. When was the last time you sent out a newsletter or ezine?

18. Whom are you recruiting?

– – –

So, how’d you do?

Any of those questions impossible to answer?

Good. Because the next action is to start building (or continue building) your permission asset.

Here are (what I believe to be) the five most common, easiest and cheapest ways to do so:

1. Ezine. Make it consistent. Make it short. Make it valuable. Make it clean. And don’t sell too much. Don’t send it out too often or to too sparsely. Most importantly, be sure your “unsubscribe” button is easy to find. (Mine goes out to 10,000 people every other Tuesday. It has videos, articles and blog posts about approachability. If you would like to subscribe, go to my website!)

2. Blog. Post every day. Write passionately. Take a side. Discover your authentic writing voice. Have a Call to Action or response mechanism at the end of every post. Don’t quit after two months. Use lots of lists. Use short sentences. Use one-line paragraphs. And of course, have fun!

3. RSS Feed. For your products. For your articles. For your tour schedule. For your upcoming events. For your blog posts. For your podcasts. For your videos. For your new ideas. For ANYTHING the people in your permission asset might value.

4. Videos. Post short, fun, cool, remarkable and slightly silly videos on YouTube. Get people to watch, subscribe to and tell their friends about you them. Think viral. Here’s a good example.

5. Social Networking. Use MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr, Squidoo and the like. Be an octopus, not an earthworm. Post pictures, videos, blogs, comments, stories and experiences. Connect with other like-minded professionals. Consider starting your own group, cause or club within your social networking platform. Or, if you’re ambitious, start your own platform.

OK! We’ve covered a lot of ground on building a permission asset so far.

Hope you’re still with me.

Because in our final segment of this post series, we’re going to talk about PATIENCE with and PROTECTION for your permission asset.

See ya then!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How many people are anticipating your marketing?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
If you haven’t read Seth’s book on permission marketing yet, DO IT TODAY.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

…only 22 more days until NametagTV.com goes ON AIR!

Build a Permission Asset, Part 1

How many people are anticipating your marketing?

Odds are, not many.

And why should they?

Most of your customers have been screwed over, sold on, marketed to, argued against, targeted, annoyed, persuaded, dishonored, pitched, pressured, bothered, interrupted, threatened and manipulated by too many companies too many times.

And they’re tired of it.

So, this means four things for your company:

1. Customers are in charge, not you.
They don’t have to listen to you if they don’t want to.

2. Customers are working extra hard to avoid and ignore your marketing.
Just think about the last time you skipped the commercials on Tivo. Then multiply that times 300 million. That’s the posture of the masses.

3. Customers are not afraid to (quickly) pick someone else.
Especially since there are infinite numbers of other options instantly available.

4. Customers are controlling how much attention they (choose) to give to you.
Because they live in a hyperspeed, ADD, instant gratification culture, and they’ve got better stuff to do.

SO, IN SHORT: Customers are calling the shots.

Not you.
Not the media.
Not your company.
Not your marketing machine.

The customers.

For that reason, you need to ask yourself ONE vital question:

How are you building a permission asset?

Bestselling marketing author Seth Godin, in his book Permission Marketing, explains it like this:

“A permission asset is the privilege (not the right) to deliver anticipated, personal and relevant ideas to the people who CHOOSE to get them.”

Wow. So, people are actually proclaiming, “Yes, I hereby allow you to market to me whenever you want.”

Glory hallelujah!!! (And all the angels sang. Amen.)

Permission. It’s the marketing word of the millennium.

IT MEANS…

o You’re building a following.
o You’re the bulls-eye, not the arrow.
o You’ve become the selected, not the selector.
o You’re working in the name accumulation business.
o You’ve earned the right to market to your customers.
o You’re worth more next week or next month than you are now.
o You’re finding products for your customers, instead of customers for your products.
o You’re accumulating, delivering value TO and maintaining respect FOR a group people who admire and support you and your ideas.

That’s permission.

So, now that you have a better understanding of the culture in which your customers live – AND what permission looks like – the next step is to assess your current permission status.

We’ll tackle that tomorrow with a list of 18 questions; then finish up this post series on Friday with one final list and example.

See ya then!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How many people are anticipating your marketing?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Go to www.gitomer.com and subscribe to Jeffrey’s ezine. Watch and learn.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

…only 23 more days until NametagTV.com goes ON AIR!

13 reasons to give stuff away for free

1. Because the more you give away for free, the wealthier you will be. Read more about this theory here.

2. Because stuff that you create doesn’t do you any good sitting in a folder on your computer.

3. Because you can let the world be your editor. By sharing your ideas (for free) with lots of people, you will get unexpected, unsolicited feedback on how to improve it.

4. Because the more stuff you have out there for free, the more fans you will create.

5. Because the Internet was founded upon the idea of free. And some things (like information, articles, videos, content,) are so readily available, that if you DON’T have at least SOME stuff for free, people are going to find them elsewhere.

6. Because if you dropped a piano and a plum off of the Empire State Building, which one would hurt more if it hit you? Exactly. The piano. Because More Mass = More Power.

7. Because who’s more of an expert: someone who wrote 12 articles or someone who write 1,200 articles?

8. Because, “The act of giving away our knowledge makes it again fresh in our mind,” says my hero, Julia Cameron.

9. Because it boosts your Google juice.

10. Because it increases the odds of someone NEW reading your stuff, thus earning their loyalty.

11. Because it increases the odds of someone OLD reading your stuff, thus reinforcing their loyalty.

12. Because it delivers multiple forms of value.

13. Because it increases website revisitability.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Why do you give stuff away for free?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your best reasons here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


Approachability 2.0

CustomInk is the web’s most advanced virtual store for custom decorated merchandise.

Customers are empowered to design and order customized apparel, drink ware and novelties for their businesses, teams, groups and events with greater ease, speed and value than ever before.

BUT WAIT, IT GETS BETTER: they understand Approachability 2.0 better than most Fortune 500 companies.

For example: On their Ink of the Week Blog, each week they award a $100 voucher to the CustomInk customer with the photo showing the most group spirit!

First, customers submit their photo to enter the contest.

Then, blog visitors pick the week’s competition winner by clicking and rating their favorite photos!

Coolest thing ever done by a t-shirt company in the history of t-shirt companies!

See, CustomInk gets it. Their Approachability 2.0 idea WINS because:

1. It’s fun.
2. It’s cool.
3. It participative.
4. It’s emotional.
5. It cultivates fans, not customers.
6. It spreads word of mouth.
7. NOBODY else does this.
8. It builds community.
9. It shows and proves instead of just telling and selling.
10. It’s the best testimonial in the world.
11. It shows the benefit of the benefit of the benefit.

LESSONS LEARNED:

1. Customers need to see PICTURES of other customers using, wearing and enjoying your products.
2. It’s 2007. Get a blog.
3. Approachable always wins.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Why aren’t you blogging yet?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Start a blog TODAY, but don’t be like 50% of all bloggers in the world and abandon your blog after two months. Stick with it! It pays off. Eventually.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


Always have something to give

PICTURE THIS: you plop down next to a friendly guy on the plane.

After a brief greeting, he asks about your work.

“I’m an author,” you say.

“Cool! What kind of books?” he asks.

So you tell him. And he becomes very excited. Obviously, he’s a perfect reader for you.

“Wow, that sounds great,” he replies. “My entire office needs to read your book! You wouldn’t happen to have an extra copy in your bag, would you?”

“Oh, uh … no. Sorry,” you say. “But I’m sure your local Borders has it in stock.”

“Oh.”

Yeah. “Oh” is right.

LESSON LEARNED: being in the right place at the right time does you no good…

Until you deliver VALUE.

That’s one of the keys to sticking yourself out there: always having something to give.

As an author, I don’t go anywhere without at least one of my books.

Because you never know whom you might meet.
You never know who might ask for one.
And you never know what business opportunities might arise by one.

Of course, this isn’t just about authors.

This is about ANY entrepreneur, artist, solo practitioner, consultant, writer, speaker, performer or musician … who wants to make a name for himself.

Always have something to give.

See, people need visuals. They need proof that you’re the real deal.

Unfortunately, first impressions don’t take very long. That’s why having something to give the perfect shortcut.

I remember a few years ago, I was chatting with a guy while waiting in line at Kinko’s. Turns out he was an up-and-coming DJ.

When I asked him if he had any of his music handy, he said, “Sure, follow me…”

We walked over to his car, he popped the trunk, and this guy had five boxes of CD’s ready to go!

“Here ya go! I always keep a few copies handy, just in case,” he laughed.

Think that guy is going to be successful?

Absolutely!

Because he’s always ready to pitch on a moment’s notice.

Because he always has something to give.

See, Strategic Serendipity is about preparation.

And if you want to make a name for yourself, consider all the potential things YOU could be ready to give!

1. Philosophy cards
2. Tip sheets
3. Demo Videos
4. Copies of your CDs
5. Copies of your books

…all of these items deliver value, support your brand and enable a conversation to go from mundane to memorable.

So whether it’s in person, on the plane or even waiting in line at Kinko’s, remember this:

Being in the right place at the right time does you no good…

Until you deliver VALUE.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Do you always have something to give?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Make a list of 10 potential freebies you could give away at a moment’s notice. Try one a week.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


The Nametag Guy’s 600th Post Spectacular!

Today is a very special day.

THIS IS MY 600th POST!

Which means I’ve been at this blogging thing for about five years. (If you’re trying to do the math, I didn’t use to post every day like I do now.)

Anyway, I can honestly say, blogging is one of the best things (if not THEE best thing) I’ve ever done for my business. Ever.

Why?

Well, this would be a really long post if I tried to explain all the reasons.

But I think mainly, blogging has afforded me the opportunity to create, meet, build community for and have conversations with my fans.

God, it’s so weird to think that I have fans.

2,480 days ago when I slapped on my very first nametag, I NEVER could have guessed THIS would be the result.

I guess what I’m trying to say is: thank you.

THANK YOU … to all the people who share their comments, stories and opinions on this blog. Your feedback motivates me.

THANK YOU … to all the people who share link love on their blogs. Your WOM honors me.

THANK YOU … to all the people who write emails, expressing their gratitude for what they’ve learned by reading this blog. Your letters make me smile.

THANK YOU … to all the people who actually implemented the things they learned on this blog. Your letters make me jump up and smile!

THANK YOU … to all the people who write me hatemail. Your (interestingly) anonymous hatred keeps me on my toes, and of course, makes me laugh.

And lastly…

THANK YOU … to anybody who’s EVER read a single post on this blog in the past five years. Your support keeps me sane. As a writer, it sucks when you stick your stuff out there, only to have nobody read it.

Therefore, I, Scott Ginsberg, hereby declare that for as long as I possibly can, I will continue to post valuable, practical and fun ideas on this blog (that you can actually apply to your businesses and lives) … every single day.

If you’re reading this post…

If you’ve read ANY post…

I love you.

You make getting up every morning at 5 AM worthwhile.

Here’s to 600 more posts!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
When was the last time you thanked your fans?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Go on your blog right now, and do it. They deserve it.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


Even when you say no, you’re still marketing

PICTURE THIS: you get an email out the blue from a prospect.

But not just ANY prospect … the perfect customer.

Exactly the type of client you want to work with.

The good news is; they want to hire you!
The bad news is; you’re booked solid.

Looks like you’re going to have to turn down their business.

What do you do?

Well, first of all, saying no isn’t really BAD news. After all, it means…

You’re in demand.
You’re staying busy.
You’re attracting the right type of clients.

That’s a great place for any company to be!

BUT HERE’S THE CHALLENGE: how do you say no to new business … while STILL marketing?

Take a lesson from Progressive Insurance.

In 1994, Progressive became the first auto insurance company to provide its rates alongside the rates of other companies.

That way, consumers could easily compare and decide … even if they didn’t use Progressive!

I remember when their commercials first came out. EVERYBODY was talking about them.

“So, Progressive will give you the insurance rates of their competitors? That’s so cool!”

Cool, indeed.

Not what you’d expect from an insurance company, right?

Exactly. Which is precisely why that sentence became their widely recognized tagline.

Also, I snooped around online and found this great excerpt from their annual report:

“Fast. Fair. Better. That’s what you can expect from Progressive. Everything we do recognizes the needs of busy consumers who are cost-conscious, increasingly savvy about insurance and ready for easy, new ways to quote, buy and manage their policies, including claims service that respects their time and reduces the trauma and inconvenience of loss.”

Wow.

Progressive LOVES and RESPECTS their customers SO MUCH, they’ll do whatever it takes to make them happy.

Even if it means forfeiting new business!

See, Progressive found a way to say no to its potential customers … while STILL maintaining (and reinforcing) brand integrity.

That’s the way the game of marketing should be played.

So, if you find yourself in a situation where you just HAVE to turn new business away, remember this:

Don’t just say no and then hang up!

“Well, we’re sorry sir. Can’t help ya out today. But, we wish you good luck fishing that dead raccoon out of your chimney. Bye!”

If you were that customer, how would YOU feel?

INSTEAD, TRY THIS: create a policy, procedure or protocol for saying no. Have options or a decision tree on-hand. Find a way to STILL serve the customer, even if he’s not your customer. Position yourself as a resource, and they’ll come back next time!

THEN, TRY THIS: consider your network of colleagues to whom you’d gladly refer client overflow. Whoever you think would be a good fit, send them a heads-up email or phone call first. Then offer their name to your prospect. Finally, follow up about a week later to see if it worked out. It’s good karma.

ULTIMATELY, REMEMBER THIS: when you forfeit new business to vouch for a colleague’s credibility, your credibility will increase as well. Clients will respect your discretion, honesty and generosity. And those characteristics will stay in their mind for the next time they (or someone else) needs you.

Because, as I learned from Seth Godin, even when you say no, you’re still marketing.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Do you build marketing in your no’s?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share an example of how saying NO at one point … enabled a customer say YES at a future point.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


Are you building a following?

Artists.
Authors.
Rockstars.
Cult leaders.
Presidential candidates.
American Idol contestants.

What do all these people have in common?

They’re all building a following.

HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS: so can you!

That’s the beauty (and ironically, sometimes the horror) of the Web: anyone with an idea can share it with the world and build a following around it. And they can do so quickly, powerfully and through a variety of media.

Unfortunately, the idea of “building a following” may sound too grandiose, too celebrity-ish and too impossible to the average businessperson.

“Who am I to build a following?” you think.
Wrong question.

Instead, ask yourself, “Am I being selfish with my knowledge?”

See, the dictionary defines a following as, “A group of people who admire or support somebody or something over a period of time.”

OK. Couple of key points in that definition:

FIRST: “A group of people.”
That doesn’t mean millions, thousands, or even hundreds. Don’t be intimidated by a false necessity to accumulate hordes of followers.

SECOND: “…admire or support…”
That doesn’t mean people are bowing down to you. Building a following isn’t about ego; it’s about shared values and mutual goals.

THIRD: “…somebody or something…”
That doesn’t mean it’s all about one person. It’s about an idea, a value, a movement, a cause and a vision.

FOURTH: “…over a period of time.”
That doesn’t mean you’re a fad, a trend, a hot topic or the new flavor of the month. You build a following one person at a time.

Actually, wait. That last point was wrong.

I shouldn’t have said, “one person at a time.”

I should have said, “one FAN at a time.”

Because that’s what building a following is about: loyalty.

Not just to you, but to the bigger idea.

So, if you want to get started (or continue) building a following, remember three key ideas:

1.Writing is the Basis of All Wealth
You can’t build a following around an idea if you haven’t first expanded, explored and clarified it on paper. Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, penning your thoughts is the single greatest starting point for building a following.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: If everybody did exactly what I said, what would the world look like?

This question will help you build a template for your philosophy.

AND REMEMBER THIS: Guy Kawasaki, an author/entrepreneur with an incredible following said, “It’s impossible to build community around mediocre writing.”

The more you write, the quicker you uncover your unique VOICE.

2. Fanagement
You can’t build a following without fans. The challenge, then, is creating, maintaining and staying in front of them. Here a few suggestions:

*Ask for their email. The crux of permission marketing is to get your fans to opt-in. Be sure you’re regularly asking new people in person AND online. Now, while giving someone your email address is technically “free,” there’s still the concern of getting spammed. So, be certain people understand your intentions at the onset. Respect always wins.

*Consistently deliver a value message. Whether it’s through an ezine, podcast or blog, you MUST deliver value. Remind your fans WHY they follow you. Also, ask for their input, ideas, feedback and comments. REMEMBER: the more involved they are, the more ownership they take. The more ownership they take, the more people they tell. And the more people they tell, the bigger your following grows.

*Gratitude. Because a following is nothing with out followers, make sure you regularly remind them how much you value their loyalty.

3. Be Approachable
Lastly, members (and potential members) of your following MUST have access to you and your ideas. In order to project approachability, remember these ABC’s:

*Access. Make yourself accessible through several media, i.e., email, phone and instant messenger. See, each of your fans maintains a different communication style. So it’s valuable to offer them several contact options. REMEMBER: If someone can’t come up to you, how will they ever get behind you?

*Boundaries. On the flip side, set realistic expectations and personal policies for the accessibility of your time and information. Every “yes” to one thing is a “no” to another.

*Content. Since you’re writing regularly now (right?) you need to make your content accessible for reading, downloading and sharing. This is ESSENTIAL for building a following. Post your ideas on a blog, website, even on public article databases. (NOTE: if you’re concerned about piracy, relax. Just be sure to write in a voice that is SO unique to you, that you become SO identified with; that someone wouldn’t dare steal it. And if he did, people would know it.)

THE BOTTOM LINE: building a following is not an easy task.

It doesn’t happen overnight.
It doesn’t happen without work.
It doesn’t happen without consistency.

However.

If you regularly deliver value through writing…
If you create a fanagement system for your followers…
If you maintain approachability within your own boundaries…

Then you WILL create a group of people who admire or support you and your ideas.

Even if you’re not a cult leader.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Are you building a following?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your best Fanagement Techniques here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


Sign up for daily updates
Connect

Subscribe

Daily updates straight to your inbox.

Copyright ©2020 HELLO, my name is Blog!