I never really understood what they meant when they said that when you do marketing you should be generous. I mean I thought that we just had to make content that was useful. Content that would provide value and teach something or at least be entertaining.
I focused on writing content that I would have liked to know or that would have provided me value after reading, content to improve. So assuming that being generous meant writing content like that, I focused on researching, reading and understanding better different disciplines.
But now I think that when they say generous marketing they mean something more than that.
They mean marketing that takes into account the reader.
Generous content is more complex than just writing something that you consider helpful, or at least as I am still trying to wrap my head around it I still find it complex.
For now, I think that it means that we should interact with others on the platforms we are using in the same way as we interact with people in our day to day life.
Think about it, how many times are we just dumping our content and just expecting people to come rushing at it and reading it. I have to admit that there was certainly a bit of conceitedness behind this.
You can’t expect people to come rushing to read your content when you are just one more in a sea of content, a sea of content that they might find overwhelming as they all try to vie for their attention.
But we can’t maintain this way of thinking, we haven’t proven anything, we haven’t shown that they can trust us, we haven’t interacted with them and showed them that they are special for us that they are the kind of people we want for our tribe. And yet we expect them to give us likes, comments, follow us, and thinking like this is really conceited
Even if we write really good content, we still need to treat them as people we owe them respect because they are human.
In the same way as you wouldn’t just keep on spamming your friends and telling them to meet where you are because its a pain to go where they are, in the same way as you can’t expect your friends to be the ones who always tell you to meet, you have to be proactive.
In the same way, as in a networking event, you have to be the first one to make the move and care about the other party.
In social media and other platforms, you have to connect with people as a human before expecting them to follow you.
Content marketing, creating useful content, is not enough, you also have to be kind and generous.
Let’s all try to practice more kindness from now.
The Results of Being Nicer
So being a researcher by trade I had to try and see the results of what I was ‘’preaching’’ and so I decided to go with two approachs.
- Find people that like topics related to what I write
- Be nicer and more helpful
Here is a snipet of the results:
Find people that like topics related to what I write
For the first strategy I tried searching for hashtags that were related to the article I published that same day or that were related to the article from the day before. Once I had this I searched for the ones that had the most retweets and tried to understand the patterns (this is a topic for another article) and went to the list of people that commented or retweeted.
Once I found those lists I proceeded to follow people on them, at first I just followed anyone but as I did this I saw that it wasn’t a smart approach and I started looking at their profile, the number of times they retweet and the topics they like and only then followed. I can’t say anything about the difference between these two approaches as I have just started the second.
Be nicer and more helpful
For the second point I searched for posts or comments in twitter where there were unanswered questions or comments where I could give some tip and I just answered them. I did this in quite a sporadic way as I was still skeptic on how helpful it could be, but now that I have seen the results (my most viewed tweet was an answer to someone else) I will do it more consistently.
So this is what I found, being nice really helped so I would really
recommend it and well, it just helps in general if we have more people being nice.
For more articles on marketing:
For more articles on how to make the most of the time we have I leave a small collection below: