Imagine if you were more popular in whatever it was you had a passion for. Whether you’re a band member, an artist, or a CEO of a baby company, having more followers on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc. is a good thing. Especially if those followers are engaged with you.
But how exactly do you do you get to be more popular.
Here’s one answer: build real relationships with people who are already where you want to be.
We’ll look at how exactly you can build real relationships online (and offline) with some of your favorite influencers so you can have more impact in the communities and people that you’re wanting to serve.
Or as they call it in the entertainment world – you’ll be more famous.
Hopefully this list will help you out just like it’s helped out tons of other people throughout the web.
Engage with Their Content and Community
If you’ve been studying how to build awareness of your brand online for any amount of time, you know there’s a tons of mega Facebook groups that you can choose to be a part of. I mentioned 6 of them that I’ve been frequenting for awhile now. But there’s tons more out there. Which ones you join depend on what you’re aiming to do and who you want to take notice of you.
Most of the larger names out there these days – especially if they’re interested in building their audience on Facebook – will have a group as well as their main website.
Join these groups. I’d start with 1 to 3 so you can spend some actual time in them because you have some work to do.
Help Others in their Communities
So let’s say you’re freshly entered into a group in Facebook, what’s the first thing you’re going to do? I’m going to guess you’re either going to read other people’s posts OR you’re going to be watching the videos they have in there.
But after you’ve done that, then what?
Well, someone who wasn’t trying to build social capital would probably just move on to something else.
However, you want to start adding value and there’s a few ways to do that:
1. Start by giving insightful comments on other people’s posts.
Make people aware of you by helping other students in these communities get what they want – engagement or answers to their questions. If you have something of value to let others know, go for it!
2. Write useful posts in their communities.
You can talk about how much the group has helped you, how much certain people have helped you, or simply say “Hey, this is something that I’ve been asked quite a bit about and I thought I’d make a post of it.”
Heck, you might even ask a question or two yourself to get engagement going!
3. Let them know you’re using their advice.
One of the the many things that I’ve learned over the years from Ramit Sethi is what he calls the “Close the Loop” technique. Basically this means that if someone says to do something (directly or indirectly) that you want to let them know how it went.
4. Share their content with others.
Let other people you about this amazing influencer! But be sure to give the post or share some context. I used to share so much stuff without actually titling it. When I asked about the post later, I’d find out they hadn’t read it yet – even though it pertained directly to their current problem!
Eventually I learned that if I wanted people to engage with things I share, I had to give the post a little bit of context to set the tone.
5. Host Meetups They’d be Proud of.
If you’re really interested in a certain community and want to have other people share in that awesomeness as well – host a meetup! For the first two years I was in Fizzle, I hosted a local meetup here in Indy. Met a lot of cool people that wanted to start their own business that way – and proud to say that many of them have become successful!
Use Their Paid Products
You’ll be noticed if you actively show someone you’re interested in what they’re selling. If you’re interested in being friends with someone, it helps by showing your appreciation in buying their work. Nothing says you’re serious to learn more from a person than if you actually buy a course, book, or other product.
Sure, an expert might have thousands of fans who have bought their stuff, but this is good to have on your social capital checklist.
6. Study their art, work, or content.
It’s one thing to actually buy a book, a course, or go to a live event, but it’s another to actually take the time to thoroughly understand what they’re trying to convey in their work. For example, most of us are guilty of having books on our shelves we haven’t gotten to.
If you want to have a chance with getting on influencer’s radar, it really helps if you have bought their stuff, learned it, and applied it to what you’re doing!
7. Send them a written testimonial for their product.
This doesn’t necessarily mean send them a snail mail – but they definitely want to know that their product is working. So CLOSE THAT LOOP!
Heck, if you do this, you might even get featured on one of their pages as someone who’s tried it AND all of their traffic who has seen that testimonial might think about visiting your site!
8. Send them a video testimonial.
What might work even better for you is sending them a video testimonial. Videos take a bit more time to produce and frankly, names and faces stick better than words. If you want to make more of an impact with your influencer and do something only a fraction of their audience is going to do on their own, send them a video testimonial.
9. Leave a review wherever you can.
Whatever testimonials you send the influencer, make sure you reuse that information in way that you can post it around the web as a review.
Anymore you can write a leave videos for reviews on Amazon – so go to town on there if a book really helped you move forward.
Appreciate those who have Helped You.
This is one that should go without saying – but it’s something that so many people forget to do.
10. Post a thank you note in the group or on a site.
After you’ve been in a group for awhile, make sure you appreciate those that have helped you get better at whatever it is that group is helping you with. You’re more than likely make someone’s day AND you’ll probably make a better friend in doing so.
11. Send them an email letting them know how you feel.
Most things that come in the email these days are ads, ads, and more ads. It’s nice to see something come in your inbox that you didn’t expect AND it’s like “You’re most awesomest person ever!”. I’m sure if you got one of these, your first action would be to print it out.
Well, do that for other people if they’ve been a help to you.
12. Send a written snail mail note to them.
Why write out a note on paper when you can send an email or post something on Facebook?
Because no one does this anymore – seriously. If you truly want to stand out, I highly recommend you write a thank you and send it. It helps to know that they’re ok with it, but if you can’t find out – don’t be a weirdo. 🙂
13. Send a gift.
Depending on who the person is, they might actually be open to gifts as well. Selena Soo writes about how she sent ice cream John Lee Dumas here.
14. Thank them Publicly.
If you really want a fun way to make someone blush and make you good in the process, thank someone in public. You can do this as simply as posting on your wall how much you appreciate them and how much they’ve meant to you.
Simply Message Them
Another way that you can build rapport with influencers, and is probably my number one way to do things is to simply treat them as another human being. But be highly aware that they probably have less time to answer messages than you do.
So, if you choose to message them in regular conversation. Here’s a few pointers:
15. Keep your messages short and to the point – 15 lines at most.
Also, don’t ask for any favors. If you were randomly asked for a favor out of the blue from someone you didn’t know vs someone you did – which would you probably respond to? Here’s the thing – influencers know TONS of people. You need to know one of those folks first before you ask them for something.
16. Mark Messages “No Response Needed (NRN)” when Applicable.
Don’t waste the influencers time if you can avoid it. Instead of making them struggle to write something in response to a email comment or a simple message, it would be kind of you to let them know you’re not requiring anything from them. Ramit spoke of this in the same post as above. Pay attention to this post. 🙂
17. Talk to them about things Outside of their Expertise.
People are people and occasionally they’ll take time off from the work they’re known for, believe it or not! If they post something that isn’t related to their field, you’re totally allowed to comment on it as well. Is it funny, laugh with them. If it’s a big part of their life – embrace it like you’re one of their family. Be there for them because so many people are takers these days!
18. Mention them in your the Work you Produce.
Ok, so most of you probably think that I love Pat Flynn, Dane Maxwell, and the Fizzle crew. But the truth is that they were really instrumental in me getting comfortable enough to start doing this online business thing – more so than anyone else. For that, I’ll always be thankful.
What I did right there, you need to do that in your content as well. Don’t be afraid to mention your sources. No one knows everything – not even “the experts”. In fact, you’ll hear experts mention people they learn from more often than not. It makes them more real.
If you’ve never really mentioned someone in your content before, feel free to start with at least 5 paragraphs in how they’ve helped you. In my case, I made a post about Pat’s book here, had Dane Maxwell on my show as he’s starting his new career in music, and had a couple of the crew from Fizzle on the show as well (Steph and Barrett).
19. Introduce influencers to influencers.
Truth is this – if you can make good connections for others (notice I said “good”), then you’ll be remembered as someone that has those good connections.
Even if you strike out on one, two, or three – keep trying. As you keep going down your path, you’ll keep meeting more and more influential people and you’ll be able to make better matches for those around you.
Remember, you don’t have to do every item on this list. Some might not actually apply to you, while others might take a little while to get started.
Start small – start with one. Pick whichever one(s) stand out – and start knocking them off the list.
You’ve already put this much time into your craft, now it’s time to capitalize.
Also, comment below and let me know if I’ve missed any ways to add value to influencers. If you already are one, I’d love to hear your perspective on this as well! Do you have any memorable stories of someone noticeably giving you value in a way that you really respected?
Look forward to hearing from you!!
In this chat between Srini Rao and Jordan Harbinger, I was reminded not only who I wanted to be when I “grew up” (I listen to both of their shows pretty regularly), but I also was reminded why building your social capital with influencers is so important.
Great info if you got value out of this post: