This is article #3 in my weekly advice series.
Two of the most frequent questions I receive in my Inbox are: “Are there customers for my product?” and “How can I get more people to engage with me?”. I started answering them in last week’s article, where I suggested a few ideas to help you find your audience in order to create content that answers their specific needs.
The next step in your strategy is to ensure that these people remain your top priority.
Success is never guaranteed. What works for your brand today may be tomorrow’s failure. That is because your online followers change and are picky — for good reasons. So, your willingness to go with the flow will make a difference in the way they respond to you.
How do you achieve it? By asking them what they have to say about you and your work.
I solicit feedback from people all the time. Knowing that I can count on them to share their suggestions and tell me exactly what they think is fantastic. Their advice has helped me make better-informed decisions as an entrepreneur and a person. Actually, without them, Social Media Slant would look very different, I would have never thought of reviewing tools, and The Little Big eBook on Blogging would not exist in its current format.
You can ask for feedback on pretty much anything. Here are a few examples:
- Working on your slogan.
- Defining your mission statement.
- Designing or updating your website.
- Sharing an article you have just published.
- Finding inspiration for new posts.
- Testing the marketability of a new product or idea.
Requesting feedback can be done in several ways. I have found, though, that specific and targeted questions remain the most effective tool to get answers:
- “What do you think of the blog redesign?”
- “Any suggestions to improve your experience on the site?”
- “Is there something I could do to serve you better? If so, what is it?”
- “What topics would you like me to cover on the blog next?”
- “What should I keep doing?”
- “Is there something that I should start / stop doing?”
- “Have you experienced something similar from what happened in the article? If so, share your story with us.”
My advice to you: Do not stop at “Great!” or “It sucks”. That kind of feedback is useless. You want it to be constructive at all time, so you can learn from it and implement necessary changes.
Don’t be shy, pose your questions in many places, not just on your blog. Go to Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and even LinkedIn. And if you prefer private comments, take advantage of Google Forms. You will be able to access all the data in a spreadsheet.
To monitor responses on social media, use HootSuite or TweetDeck.
When you request user feedback, you openly invite your audience to tell you more about them. You also give them the ability to contribute to your success – even in small ways. In that sense, you redefine the “art of the possible.”
Paying close attention to other people’s ideas and opinions is one of the most important things in business. It helps build trust and positive word of mouth.
Looking for a quick tip on how to use a specific Twitter feature? Need a recommendation on a specific WordPress plugin? Searching for some social media numbers / stats for your industry?…
You can ask me anything at firstname.lastname@example.org. Every Tuesday OR Thursday, I will answer one question on the blog. Your name and website can even be mentioned if you want.