Have you ever watched as someone else gets all the attention?
As “Likes,” comments, and shares flood their social media platform, you wonder what they did right.
Was it their profile picture, their friend count, or their edgy personality?
Why don’t people flood to your profile like that?
Whenever you share something with your audience, you don’t get that same attention.
Every entrepreneur needs a following or they’ll struggle to grow their business. But in a world where everyone’s attention is going elsewhere, how do you make noise worth listening to?
The answer isn’t as complicated as you might think.
Here’s 8 lessons from Michael Hyatt’s, Platform, where he discusses exactly how you can build an audience and sell them your product.
1. Don’t Be Mediocre.
Your product might be content production, like mine. It might be a different kind of content, like video or audio. Or it might be something more tangible, like the next big car wash or smoke alarm iteration.
Whatever the case, don’t create a mediocre product.
The desire to be finished threatens every entrepreneur. Rather than work on the product further, many of us wish to launch it. And instead of grinding away at the mill of excellence, we release a half-assed and half-finished product.
The result? No one buys. Or, if they do, their loyalty doesn’t last.
Here’s the deal. Mediocrity is where you’ll automatically drift. That’s why it’s mediocrity. It’s what everyone does naturally.
So unless you put in the extra time to create something awesome, you’ll create something that no one wants… because they’ve seen it before.
Take the extra time.
“The truth is, mediocrity is natural. You don’t have to do anything to drift there. It just happens. But if you want to create truly wow experiences — and if you want to build your platform — then it is going to require courage.”
2. Don’t Be A Perfectionist.
To mitigate that last point, remember this.
Don’t be a perfectionist.
Because perfectionism unnecessarily extends launch dates and business growth overall.
Striving for excellence asks, “How can we make this better before we launch it? How can we create a preferred product?” Perfectionism asks, “How can we create a perfect, infallible, product?”
Since perfection is impossible, perfectionism usually turns into procrastination. It becomes an excuse to wait a while longer before taking that leap.
Sometimes, you’re going to fail. A feature on your product will suck. The price will be too high or too low. Or your marketing plan will fall limp.
But to be frank, that’s the whole point of entrepreneurship: to learn enough about the market that you can create a product worth selling.
If your goal is to create a perfect product from launch, here’s my advice. Give up and save everyone the wasted time and energy.
“Perfectionism is the mother of procrastination.”
3. Give 20 Times More Than You Take.
We’ve all been bombarded by that loser who only posts about their most recent business idea on social media.
I’m not talking about the person who courteously discusses the business they’re creating. I’m talking about the person who takes from others without giving any real value.
Stuff like, “I’m launching this business. Go here to sign up!” Or, “Check out this article I wrote!”
What differentiates this person from the rest is that they never really provide value for their audience. They only ask, take, and demand.
On behalf of everyone, everywhere, we hate this person.
We don’t “like” or comment on their posts because their ego deserves a beating.
So as a rule of thumb, give 20 things on social media before you ever ask for anything in return. Then, when you do ask, your audience will be more than willing to contribute.
“The fact is, no one wants to be spammed. Not today. There are too many alternative sources of content. If you want to build a social media platform — one where people listen to you — then you have to be a giver, not a taker.”
4. Devote 20 To 30 Minutes To Social Media.
I’m betting you read that headline and thought, “Is he saying, only thirty minutes? Or is he assuming that I spend less than that currently?”
Most of us spend a shit load of time on social media — scrolling mindlessly from image to image to video to gif (Holy crap! Where did the time go?).
But what we don’t do is actively engage with all of that content. We’ll scroll past a funny meme and giggle to ourselves, but we won’t “like” or comment. We’ll read someones update, be inspired by it, but not thank them for sharing.
What I’m suggesting is that instead of being a simple consumer, become a participant.
Something amazing happened on my social media channels when I started to “like,” comment, and share other people’s stuff.
They started doing the same with my content.
If you want an audience, you have to create online relationships with people and then they’ll be interested in what you have to say.
Spend thirty minutes every day engaging with people online and you’ll start building a loyal group of evangelists.
“In my opinion, that’s not a big investment of time, especially for the benefits I receive… The key is to be intentional and not allow it to become a huge time suck.”
5. Respond To Comments.
Only a celebrity can walk onto a stage, say something, and then walk off without addressing the audience directly.
Are you a celebrity?
No. You’re not.
Which means that when you share a piece of content or launch a product, you need to respond to your audience. They’ll have opinions, disagreements, and thoughts about your release.
Your a real person who’s trying to build relationships with your audience, right?
Here’s my advice: respond to every single comment so long as it remains possible.
At some point, hopefully, your following will get so large that it would be unreasonable for you to respond to every comment. When that happens, the temptation will be to assume that you don’t need to respond to any.
That would be wrong.
Still respond to comments, just not all of them. Your audience needs to know that you actually care about your topic and you’re not just trying to get people to buy your product, read your article, or sign up for your list.
You’re a person. So be a person.
“If you start the conversation, have the good manners to stick around and participate. Your readers want to engage with you. They will engage with other readers, but they are more likely to comment if they know you are reading the comments and replying to them.”
6. Use Authentic Profile Pictures.
I love this one.
Partly because it’s dead simple and partly because it’s crazy effective.
Most people use a profile picture where they look exciting or sexy.
That’s right, don’t aim to look sexy in your profile picture. Because unless you’re a good-looking guy or girl who aims to build an audience off your rocking body, a sexy photo will accomplish nothing.
Instead, aim to create an authentic and welcoming photo.
And that’s simpler than you might think. Here’s how you do that?
Laugh while the picture gets taken. That’s right. Laugh.
When the photo is about to be snapped, intentionally get yourself to laugh while looking at the camera. If you have a good photographer, this will create a photo that makes you seem welcoming and approachable. I use this rule with all of my profile pictures.
I was even laughing during this photo.
“Im not talking about one of those big, cheesy smiles your force yourself to hold about two seconds longer than you are comfortable. I’m talking about a natural smile with your mouth and your eyes. You want to look likable. This is more important than looking professional — whatever that is.”
7. Collaborate With Other Platform Builders.
In the book, Michael Hyatt recommends guest blogging, but in the case that writing isn’t your thing, you can collaborate with different mediums instead.
If you make Youtube videos, find someone who is about as lucrative as you are — or moreso — and ask them if they’d like to do a video with you.
When you do this, their audience engages with you and might just end up following you as well. Working with like-minded influencers is the single most powerful way to grow your following.
If you want a bigger audience, you have to find people who are willing to follow you. And if someone is willing to follow a different influencer, they’ll likely follow you as well.
“I currently run one guest post on my blog each week. The bloggers who have participated in this often report their biggest traffic day ever. But it is also a huge help to me: it is one less post I have to write and it gives my audience some variety. The bottom line: it’s a win for both of us — and the online community.”
8. Collect Endorsements
I thought I’d end with a simple lesson.
Whenever possible, ask for a testimonial from people who’ve worked with you.
You can’t sell anything without social proof, and an endorsement portfolio gives you that.
When someone expresses that they were impressed with your product, service, or content, simply respond, thanking them for their kudos and asking if they’d be willing to write a testimonial for you to publicize.
Most people — especially in their moment of excitement — will be more than willing to do this for you.
All you need to do is ask .
“Bottom line: endorsements can make a huge difference in whether or not your product gets noticed by the gatekeepers, trendsetters, and your target market. Take the time to get them. It is worth it.”