The following rant is dedicated to my friend Jim Kukral. His new book ATTENION! This Book Will Make You Money will tell you the right way to get attention and you should order a copy right now from Amazon … (go ahead, I’ll wait)… NOW! Then post your full name in the comments below and I will read it to Jim when he comes on Social Media Radio on 8/20… Did you do this yet? … I’m serious, this is the right way to start a dialog with a famous author. Buy his first book before he gets too famous. He will love you for it and remember you later.
I admit it. I’m an attention seeking, self promoting, Twitter loving maniac.
Will I do ANYTHING for attention? Of course not.
And neither should you.
Talking To Me Like You Know Me (which is okay if you do)
Here’s one that really bugs me lately. I’ve had some very good friends. NAME authors that you’d recognize, include in Tweet, and tag me in NOTES on Facebook. One went as far as to pepper a sales letter disguised as an article with the names of 15 thought leaders and TAGGED each of us. My name appeared with others in one sentence paragraphs like “Don’t you agree? Warren, John, Dick & Harry”
I won’t show you that one. When I contacted the big name guy he promptly fired the real writer and promised to never let anyone fake being him again.
I will show you this.
Several times a day I get spam tweets with little more than my name and a link from someone that does not FOLLOW me and to whom I have absolutely no connection.
The one pictured is is an especially obvious spammer. None of the people mentioned are really being addressed, a BOT put the Twitter handles in to make it appear when you look at the victim’s profile.
I don’t follow beapretz and doubt there such a person. Like I said this one was easy.
How NOT to Be Seen As a Spammer
I also receive dozens of well meaning tweets from people that don’t know me well enough to be asking me for a favor or presenting a personal question like “Want to loose weight?” Most of these are from some that just wants attention for a new blog post and was taught that adding a bunch of names is like cc’ing the famous people. No, it’s a good way to look like an annoying spammer.
Here’s some tips to keep you out of hot water.
- Get to know people before even considering asking for a favor. If you tweet anything to me that has @WarrenWhitlock in mentioned, I will bend over backwards to try to find a way to answer and engage in a conversation.
- Don’t make me bend over backwards. If you tweet “Good morning” “I see you” “Is it hot in Vegas” or an other such greeting I will assume that you want to talk BUT have not idea what you want to talk about. I used to go find a profile, links to blogs, do a Google search or look people up in my customer database. I’m just that crazy about conversations… but most people won’t research to see who is saying “Waz Up” … Make sure you get to the point in one line
- Be specific. As much as I crave having a conversation with each of the tens of thousand of connections I have online, I get turned off by “Can you give me some feedback on my web site?” and if I’m in a particularly snide mood I will reply with “Here’s my feedback. Don’t promote by asking for feedback” If you really want to know what I think. Ask “Do you like the font on my order form” or something VERY specific. My opinion on your font choice will be just as valid as a “nice site” comment you want and either way, I’m not going to email you a list of tips and suggestions for your site.
NOTE: I love reviewing sites for clients and writing long emails with punch lists of things I see can improve your traffic, conversions, search engine positions and give you the life you always wanted. Key word here is “client” FREE advice is given in blog posts, tweets and rants like this.
- Don’t drop names. Don’t cc: someone so people will think you know them. The beauty of modern media is that big time authors will talk to you. They want to engage their readers just as much as you do.
- Avoid putting more than one name in a message. The Twitter game #FollowFriday is an excuse for people who want to look like they are helping to send out a tweet that make them feel good, and not much else. If you like someone, they deserve the whole 140 character to themselves. Think about the last service group activity you worked tirelessly on. When the president says “Thanks to everyone who came or worked on the event” at the next luncheon meeting it doesn’t feel like much. If she reads a list, not much better. You didn’t do the work just for the recognition, but you sure do appreciate when she give you 10-15 meaningful words of praise from the podium. Adding a lot of name looks spammy and people know you just threw everyone in a list.
- Don’t expect much. If your read #4 and though. Great idea. I’m going to get @Oprah to talk to me, you are likely to be disappointed. I know hundreds of authors who will answer anyone who tweets to them. Then there is that friend I’ve known for 10 years who didn’t answer my last email and has all his phone calls redirected to a voice mail box that says “This line not monitored”… when I see him, he says “I thought you were going to contact me”
- Build Up Your Karma This one should go at the top of the list, (that’s both true and a note from converting this later to a book chapter). The more you give, the more you get… so to get more results, you don’t need a magic pill or a secret handshake, you need to GIVE MORE. I like the math from Chris Brogan and Julian Smiths book “Trust Agents” where they suggest TWELVE acts of sharing for every time you self promote. I have a lot of stuff I’d like you to read, so I’m promoting others at least 100 times a day.
- It’s Work. You want to be a best selling author? Start acting like one. The big name multi millionaire authors I know are busy working. When you see a program, seminar, networking event, tweet up and think “I can’t sell any books there” you are really being way too short sighted. The “over night successes” I know got there from years of work. They didn’t say “but no one knows me” and they didn’t ask “what’s in it for me?” very often.
Another plea to get your ATTENTION for your own good: Did you go buy Jim Kukral’s book when I told you to? … when I say Get on Jim’s good side now while it only costs you the price of a book you ought to buy and read anyway.. I really mean it. Jim is going to be one of those overnight success stories. How do I know? He’s been working this for years. He’s a giver, smart, and fun to hang out with. Don’t wait on this one. Buy that book now, put the comment in below and start looking for where Jim will be in person. Go up to him and say “I bought your book from a post on BestSellerAuthors.com and I’m so glad I did” (those exact words if you really like me) and if expect at least a warm smile of gratitude and likely a big hug. Trust me on this one. This really works.
Speaking of comments. That should be on any good list about Attention. Leave a comment here and EVERY time you read a blog post. You get a link back to your site, your name in lights and most important, a CONNECTION to the writer. I notice when you comment and tweet about my work. I appreciate it and whenever I can, I find some random act of reciprocal kindness.
Karma dude. KARMA.
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Is this for real?
I just reported as spam that “BeaPretz” account today. That kind of spamming is just annoying. Very good post about being of service on the internet, rather than just self promotion. Looking forward to reading Jim Kukral's book… looks interesting.
thanks for the comment. When I tell Jim that you bought his book, would it be okay if we used your name? All I go here was a business name.
I'm real. I don't know what else you are asking about. You comment looks like one of those that was just added to get a link.
Come on out. Be real. Tell us your name and be specific
Some of the wording in the blog post sounded like it was put together by someone other than the original author. Thought maybe it was written with some kind of script.
that's ok. I don't believe you are real either. I dont' even know your name
You're being serious?
Click on my disqus profile. I'm signed in. My name is Tyler Douglas Hurst, ergo, tdhurst is my name.
I see you DID write the post in question.
Hi Warren – sure, sorry about that. My name is Linda Dolente. I am looking forward to the social media radio show on 8/20.
Thanks for the introduction Linda. Now I won't refer to you as the “web designer from LA” (I was missing an initial 🙂
The whole point about twitter is that there are no set rules but certainly some etiquette helps. I am a strong believer in Karma and it takes time to build up credibility in any area yet alone being one of the 200,000+ social media experts on twitter! It depends on how you want to build a brand – you obviously like the personal full name approach but for others that may not necessarily work.
You are right, it's okay to use Twitter as you'd like. That's the reason we started “Twitter Revolution” with the words “NO RULES” .. when dealing with people, it's the relationship that counts. The etiquette rule I live by is “what would you do if you were face to face in a public place”
I also agree that calling oneself a “social media expert” is like calling yourself a “people person” .. I personally don't even like that we have to call the revolution in marketing and communtions technology use “social media” but have no better words to describe it.
People ask me for help with social. media. I've found that it's easier to help them when I let go of my need to define the words and listen. If I listen, then do my best to understand and respond, I usually come out okay. Once in a while, that ends up with them calling me a social media expert. Sometimes they tell me I'm good with people and that makes me smile.
You have a very good point. Brand's trying to build or nurture their online communities need to pay particular attention to #7. I get fatigued by businesses that tweet about nothing else but their new fangled feature in their product which I am now never going to buy.
There is room for a “deal feed” or “product update feed” but as you note, those get very annoying for someone trying to actually engage a company