One of the things the experts tell us to do when someone new subscribes to our email list is ask them to also follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, circle us on…well, you get the idea.
I don’t know about you, but when someone asks ME to do that, I’m like “What? It’s not enough that I just gave you my email?”
So awhile back I decided to flip this around and instead ask people to share links to THEIR social profiles so I could follow THEM.
The idea here is to let people know two things:
1. You think of them as real human beings and would like to get to know them better.
2. You’re interested in having actual, for real, two-way conversations with them.
Here’s what mine looks like:
On average, I’d say about 20% of people actually reply to these. And yes — I follow through with a reply back within 24 hours, also following them on social media when they share their links.
NOTE: There are also folks who say you should always follow-back everyone who connects with you on social media. Twitter advocates, for example, have long had a reputation for urging folks to follow back everyone that follows them. My advice: don’t do it. ONLY follow people on social media channels that you KNOW are quality connections. There are lots of people using this follow-back mentality to build up the number of people who follow them (e.g., it will look like they’re more important than they are — vanity, pure and simple). Unless you have a plan for getting to know each and every person you follow, those connections will end up as meaningless, weak ties.
My challenge to you:
Follow Your Subscribers
First you’ll want to fix your standard “thank you” email to reflect your invitation to your new peeps.
Once you’ve got that done, take a few minutes to look at your favorite social media lists and find out who’s following you. Read their profiles and newsfeeds. Find something interesting about them. Then reach out and say hello. Thank them for following you and say something personal to let them know you took the time to find out more about them.
How do you feel and what happens as you do this? Any responses? Was it easy for you to do? Hard? No right or wrong answers here — we’re all just experimenting! Come visit us on Facebook and share.
Image credit: Leyton Parker
Love it, Tea! I’m going to try this one out immediately. Real connection is something that has been missing.Thanks.
You’re welcome, Donna. And let me know how it plays out for you.
Thanks Tea, this is great! Although I make a point of following clients anyway, I have always done it “behind the scenes” as it were – quietly liking their FB page, following them on twitter; my takeaway from your piece is making this process conscious – actually asking clients to share their links so they feel genuinely engaged with. Going to do this in the next newsletter! 🙂 (PS: I loved your own auto-response letter, btw, it really did inspire me to respond back to you!)
Yay! Thank YOU for the comment and the kind words. Let me know what your responses are like in a few months?