60 Ways to Increase Your Influence Online

60 Ways to Increase Your Influence Online

Reader Comments (182)

  1. Hey Sam,

    I’m going to print this out! It is jam pack with valuable info. My favorite, from Dave Navarro, “Find people who have your audience already and co-create products with them.” This is awesome!

    Chat with you later…

  2. What an awesome list of tweets!

    All with brilliant advice!

    All of them give us food for thought.

    I really liked David Meerman Scott’s tweet “Stop talking about your products and services. People don’t care about products and services; they care about themselves.”

    So true in this age. I think he meant that we should tell people how the product will benefit them, instead of telling the benefits of the product.

    I also like Julien Smith’s tweet “Get someone else to take a look at what you have that you maybe take for granted and gives you an advantage over other people.”

    Actually, we did this in the last post here at copyblogger. Thanks to the copyblogger team, I got great new ideas for my tagline.


  3. Boy o’ Boy!
    I’ve died and gone to heaven. I will be reading this post for days.

    But…I have to be careful. This is a awesome list to be inspired by – not RULED by. Really trying to find my own path without reinventing the wheel. 😉

  4. Good stuff! I look forward to soaking it in. Some of my favorite authors here and some I’ve never heard of. Thanks guys!

  5. @Josh – Good idea! Highlighting and underlining welcome. 🙂

    @Nabeel – Glad you found them helpful! And, might I say, those are two excellent quotes you chose. 😀

    @Stanford – I know, that was the experience listening to all of them, too! What I find is that their advice will pop into my consciousness (you know, like when Luke hears Obi-Wan’s voice from the ether) on a regular basis, and then I’ll attempt to apply what they said to a particular context. But beginning to internalize them and “staying with them” is, I’m discovering, a powerful way to continually improve all of our marketing (and, well, human) efforts.

    @Jessica – Thanks for your kind words! That was the goal… happy to see you felt we hit the mark. It’s just the beginning!

  6. I like the weekly twitter chat idea. I think this can bu used to give tips, opinions, take polls and just get a conversation started that’s in your niche that could ultimately help someone. Including me.

  7. This is a wonderful post, chock-full of great ideas. I’ll be directing baby lawyers to it from my Just for Lawyers blog, because those poor kids need all the help they can get!

  8. I love them ALL! Being that I am in PR, this tweet really stood out for me- “Start the media arm of your company, whether it’s a special show, or a podcast, or an online magazine.” -@therisetothetop. Excellent post, thank you.
    – Starr Hall

  9. I love that concept of a 60-minute lecture with 60 speakers. I think out of all of them, the one that will make people the most money is number 1.

    If you can grasp that your customers don’t give a rat’s behind about you, and then work to change your model so that you solve their problems instead, the sky’s the limit.

    -Joshua Black
    The Underdog Millionaire

  10. Great list with lots of information to use. Thank you! I’ll have to print this out too. There’s lots of good information here and an awesome idea for a conference.

    I have a few favorites, but two that resonate with me now are #46. Brian Clark. “Learn to be a storyteller. Narrative — it’s what makes us human. Big media does it great. You have to as well.” -@copyblogger and #5. Liz Strauss. “Know where you’re going — because who would want to follow you if you don’t know where you’re going?” -@lizstrauss.

    # 46 – Journalists master the art of storytelling and use it in well-known newspapers like the New York Times. A good article or post can hook your readers and lead them through your idea. I’ve been trying to learn this art recently. It takes time and practice, but is effective.

    # 5 – This quote, I believe, applies to finding your personal brand. Personal brand is your way of delivering information toward a market based on your own insight and skill. It’s also a calling to lead and provide value.

    This can apply to navigation on your website too. I recently updated navigation on my site because it didn’t make sense to me. I wanted to provide easy solutions for writers to find markets and jobs online. I believe that if you don’t know where you are directing people on your website, they won’t know either. Reading Seth Godin’s books like The Big Red Fez helps, especially with landing pages.

    I look forward to checking out your Influencer Project. Thanks again!

  11. awesome. brilliant advice from brilliant people.

    i see a theme here…CONVERSATION! to get people talking, you’ve got to engage and take part in what people are saying. a no brainer – right? again, another theme i see…TIME! you won’t influence over night.

    makes me think about the [real-life] friends i have – over time and between conversations, i grew to love them and saw their influence on me. online relationships are like that, too.

    – sarah

  12. This is a terrible post.

    Not one person said run around like a headless chicken leaving comments like “Great post this came at just the right time for me and I think I’m going to print it out and nail it to my head”

    Is there any other way? I think not.

    I smell a conspiracy.

  13. Laurel’s comment is SO important!

    “Each month, on the first day of the month, assign yourself 3 digital trends you’ve been hearing about and do a test drive.” -@laureltouby

    It’s way too easy to fall off the new technology bandwagon. Once you get too far behind, it’s too hard to catch up. I have plenty of friends (in their mid-twenties) who refuse to use twitter, foursquare, hootsuite, etc. and don’t know a thing about them. They will become the boring old people who don’t know how to make a phone call or turn on a DVD in a couple decades. Not to mention, they won’t be relevant and won’t be able to identify with consumers in the marketing world.

    My dad uses twitter, facebook, and knows everything about every smart phone. He inspires me to keep up with all of the digital trends. He even bought my grandpa an iPhone. And my grandpa showed me how to get this app that lets you zoom on a 1st gen iPhone! He taught ME something about technology. Pretty cool.

  14. Wow, great list, and inspiring too. Yes, sometimes you get more users of your product/service offline than online, but I think it is not applicable on blogs and sites unless it is regional.

  15. I see so many different “types” of influence here.
    Some people kinda miss the boat with talk about being a “thought leader”.
    Influence isnt necessarily innovation.
    in the whole realm of human behavior and learning, there’s not really much that hasnt been said or done before, often more effectively.
    What influence Really is, is being impactful , empowering a change in behavior that endures.
    Getting someone closer to a goal, increasing their enthusiasm by guiding them towards more success that they choose.
    I try to frame influence into the metaphor of parenting or mentoring another. Influence is the act that develops the skills and strategies for the student or kid to be able to do things on their own in the future self directed and autonomously.

  16. Really good points, Bryan. There are a lot of flavors, and it’s much more about leadership than about innovation. Plenty of innovators have very little influence at all.

  17. @Tim, how’d you know? I wasn’t expecting anyone to “out” us on the blog, but I guess it had to happen somewhere.

    There were the “birthers”… and now we have… the “influencers” (cue dramatic music). I wouldn’t be surprised if CNN picked this up tonight.


  18. @ Brian – Join me in my world wide quest to introduce SAB into the dictionary for those occasions when raucous, hysterical and demonic laughter isn’t really called for but ‘snickered a bit’ is.

    @ Sam – Don’t worry I haven’t told anybody else.

  19. Know precisely why yours is better or different than competitive solutions. Communicate that clearly to customers. (Don’t for God’s sake say “better service and support” because that’s what everybody else says.)

  20. That was one of the best “mini conferences” I’ve read in a long time. I would have to say that my favorite was: Lewis Howes. “Find one specific niche and master that niche.”

    The reason why is, it’s so true! The way you become successful is you pick one niche, one service, master it and become the authority in that niche and then choose another and master that.

    That’s why these “jack-of-all-trade” SEO companies online are everywhere and nowhere and the super successful are those who spend all their time, education and service providing on one niche within an industry.

    I currently offer affordable SEO article writing services to small businesses and it’s one niche that I’ve mastered. I’m currently getting into SEM and starting to master this niche as well.

    That tweet is the truest of all!

  21. I’d like to add one, based on my experience co-creating the Influencer Project with Sam and the ThoughtLead team:

    If you’ve got a good thing going, keep it going. Once you’ve found a topic or an angle that people resonate with and really appreciate, then play that tune and its variations for as long as you can.

    It’s too easy to go from idea to idea, and not “use all parts of the buffalo” with your work. Can you take a successful webinar or event and turn it into an e-book, a keynote speech, a series of blog posts, an op-ed article, a full-blown book, or even a guest post on Copyblogger 🙂 ? The possibilities are endless.

  22. @Bryan – I love the definition of influence as “empowering a change in behavior that endures.” Whenever influence is put in the context of sustainable change, I get inspired. 🙂

    @Marshall – Thanks for the awesome feedback. The “jack-of-all-trades” approach definitely leaves a lot to be desired from a, shall we say, USP standpoint. I find Copyblogger a perfect example of the non-“say-everything-to-everyone” mindset. And Brian, Sonia, and team took it even one step further in *creating* the Third Tribe, which is now, in many ways, it’s own niche. Kick butt in the SEM universe!

  23. Man you guys killed it with that project. You’ll blasted your way from the fringes of the social media jungle to front stage centre with this excellent, well thought out campaign.

    THAT’s what impresses me, way more than the actual content. Although everything that’s been said is all good & worthwhile, nothing in these 60 tweets is new or unheard of by most of us.

    It’s WHAT & HOW you pulled it off which is worth noting. Seth Godinism at its finest, well done guys! Kudos!

  24. #56 Steve Woodruff-“Identify gifted up-and-comers” love this because I’m of the old folks adage of sowing seeds in the universe and receive only good in retuen. Would love for that to happen sometime in my golden years:)


  25. Sam, on the flip side of this, it would be just as valuable if you guys did a follow up project with these same 60 people stating WHAT NOT TO DO.

    I’d love to hear their mistakes.

  26. This is definitely a bookmark post. I can’t wait to really digest what everyone is saying. As of right now, I love the bigger buttons idea. How easy to implement!

    Thanks for a great post.

  27. Thank you so very much for this wonderful list!
    I think #5 sums it up for me.
    #5. Liz Strauss. “Know where you’re going — because who would want to follow you if you don’t know where you’re going?”

  28. I love this! The kind of stuff you refer back to often. I love that it’s so many awesome thoughts in one place. Printing & keeping! My new to-do list!

  29. All i ever read is “consistency,consistency,consistency” what a lazy advice… persistence is far more important -regardless of what you do -read Oscar Wilde and get done with it: “Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative”

  30. This is awesome. So many great pieces of advice.

    My favorite…it’s hard to pick just one, so I say:

    #1 – awesome (and so true)
    #4 – Consistency, something I am always improving
    #5 – I know where I am going…great piece of advice
    #17 – just perfect

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  31. I love @scottporad’s quote and have practiced it for about a year now. Amazing what a shy person can do with social media and then meeting (and often making friends) after meeting folks for coffee in person.

  32. I’m going to rename this post The New 60 Commandments of Social Media. Great, great, great. Thank you.

  33. Agree with the comments above. I have printed out and will apply one strategy per week.
    Love the concept and shows that if you can’t say it succinctly, you can’t really say it. Great B.S. elimination on the topic. BRAVO!

  34. These are all such great points, it is hard to know where to start. I think Laura Roeder point is a good place to begin: “Just start talking to people! Don’t worry about what to tweet, just start responding.”

  35. My two Favorites:

    “Find people who have your audience already and co-create products with them.” -@rockyourday

    “Stop talking about your products and services. People don’t care about products and services; they care about themselves.” -@dmscott

  36. I’m torn on a post like this, so many takeaways, but I can’t take them all at once.


    Ima grab lucky #13

    Laura Roeder. “Just start talking to people! Don’t worry about what to tweet, just start responding.” -@lkr

    Ok, Laura. I’ll do it, I promise 🙂


  37. wow there are so many fabulous tweets to take away from this. I love this one

    “Invest more time mapping a strategy for not just using social media, but for integrating social media with other tactics.” -@sergiobalegno

    Many that I will take away with me and inject into my own strategy!

  38. Okay, I summarize what I got out of the list:

    Have a plan for what to say (good content) → befriend great people (in your niche) → interact consistently / honest → care about the people, not your product/service

    I suppose I captured about 3% of all the advice in the list, but following those 3% should be sufficient to improve my social presence 500%

  39. This one is my favorite: #6. Robert Scoble. “Follow better people. The better your inbound is, the better your output will be. And your output is what people follow.” -@scobleizer

    There was some great advice in this blog post. Thanks for this great information!

  40. My two favorites are below! Also, I really like Annabel’s comment about staying upbeat and positive. It just makes you a better person and more fun to be around!

    Mark Silver.“Many people are afraid to speak; if you speak for them, they will be listening.”

    “Give as much as you can give. Too often we’re too focused on what we want to accomplish.” -@msaleem


  41. – I wish more people would “get” David M. Scott’s tweet (#1). It is right on.
    – Ann Handley’s tweet also resonates. And she is, after all, the content queen! 🙂
    – Guy’s advice (#33) is news to me. I’m going to try that. Different people are online in different time zones, so it makes perfect sense.
    – Aaron K. (#54) I wish more people realized that social media is not a stand-alone tactic. Yay, Aaron!

    Sam, if I may add one, it would say, “Be yourself.” It extends what Cathy Brooks says about being authentic. Social media is not about putting on airs and being impressive. It’s about being true to your personality and building relationships with those who gravitate to you because of it. People can see through phoniness and bravado.

  42. Coppyblogger, I’m going to need sixty days to digest all this great advice and put it into use – so please, stop writing for sixty days!

  43. This is a good starting point for any wanna-be marketer who is using twitter.

    ‘Don’t re-tweet to win friends, you’re only adding to the noise. Only re-tweet something you would want to read again, yourself.’

    – Paul.

  44. The Influencer Project is the best example of “Practice what you Preach” I’ve seen in a looong time.

    Big Props for the compilation of Best Social Media practices/advice in @ 140 characters or less! I will certainly be sharing to my own blog followers!


  45. I was a bit surprised at the quote about stop talking about your products.

    Also I don’t think I have ever seen a post be retweeted so much (1100 as I write this), well done. 🙂

  46. The headline did it for me. And at 1118 tweets so far, it appears I’m not alone! Fabulous content. Real thought starters. Many thanks indeed! P. 🙂

  47. Simple yet powerful advice: to make it easier for people to share the gems of this article, I’d suggest you to add a “retweet” text link next to each item of the list. I have seen it do wonders on other similar articles.

  48. David Meerman Scott’s advice is so true. Advertisers use this ploy all the time. Most folk just care about how the product will be of benefit them.

  49. what a valuable piece of writing/interviewing.

    wise people indeed.

    got to make some changes to some of my things – fan page and getting used to talking to people and the idea of introducing someone to a person they don’t know. mentors help with that idea.

    thanks for sharing.

  50. What a great idea. Easy to read and lots of tips. I would be very happy if when on Twitter someone just interacted instead of trying to sell to me. And when I interact with them a small tweet to acknowledge that, does not take all that much in time and effort.

  51. Hi Sam,
    This is one of the most valuable posts I’ve ever read. Each one of them has its importance. I’m going to save this article.
    Thanks for sharing this.


  52. I loved the reminder that there are media beyond online, each medium with its own strengths and weaknesses that deserve serious consideration. That’s easy to forget.

  53. great resource list! a lot of the advice is common sense. still, hearing it or should i say reading it can be the catalyst to finally allow your inner “light to come on” so to speak.

    definitely printing this one off 🙂

  54. I really enjoyed reading the tips from all those people. Very good advice. I definitely agree that it is important to get to know people that can be a great influence on you. They can help you become better at what you like. But only if you have an open mind and a willing heart. And not give up!

  55. I must say this is the best article i’ve ever come across in my entire life on blogging.

    This is too awesome. extremely brilliant. I really must have a hard copy of this. coz its gonna help me in a long run.


  56. So many great pointers, I can’t remember all of them. The one that I really thought was profound was:

    Brian Solis. “How do you become a thought leader? It starts with *being* a thought leader and then connecting the dots back to you.”

  57. Sam, this was a great read. When I came across it earlier today, it made my mind buzz with excitement – powerful and thoughtful messages from powerful thoughtful influencers. It’s about people and community and making a difference in the world, not just making a difference in our wallets.

    So I just had to do a followup blog of my own. Check it out on my website – “It’s All About Marketing, Isn’t It?” Thanks for the inspiration!

  58. This list is getting printed out & I’m going to make a checklist of them.

    Thank you so much for giving so much value and giving me a clear direction of how to improve my online networking.


  59. The Influencer Project – what an incredible concept. The result? Real, valuable advice that you can actually put into practice.

    Once of my favourites:
    #59. Julien Smith. “Get someone else to take a look at what you have that you maybe take for granted and gives you an advantage over other people.”

    I think all too often we look so hard at something for so long every day that we stop seeing it for what it is.

  60. “Start the media arm of your company, whether it’s a special show, or a podcast, or an online magazine.”

    ….The next major idea I will be implementing.

    Thanks Ever so much for sharing!

  61. I like this one: “Stop talking about your products and services. People don’t care about products and services; they care about themselves.” Features into benefits?

    Another good tip:
    “Just start talking to people! Don’t worry about what to tweet, just start responding.”

  62. What a great list! One that I really like to point out is #58. Amber Naslund. “Online influence is a slow burn. It’s something that’s grown by having quality one-on-one conversations over time.” -@ambercadabra

    We have to remember that it doesn’t happen over night. It takes time to establish a connection.

    Thanks for this list!

  63. Very inspiring post. I love #20, # 25 and this ————> #60. “How do you become a thought leader? It starts with *being* a thought leader and then connecting the dots back to you.” -@briansolis. Thanks for sharing this! 🙂

  64. I like this one “Don’t worry about getting attention from other people. Make something worth talking about.” Just continue making things worth talking, forget about the outcome ’till you’ll get surprise one day knowing people attracts what you’ve done in the long run. Who knows?

  65. I like this article post 🙂

    especially the #25 Jason Falls’ statement “Share good content consistently. That’s how I’ve done it.” -@jasonfalls

  66. This is great. After moving into a freelance online career and doing all the right things by the SEO-book, its actually posts like this one that are making me more confident at throwing all that out and just going for trying to write something that’s good to read. I’ll worry about the whole monetize question later and for now, stop and learn to smell the sage. I’ll be amongst those commenters who are printing these 60 tips and well, nailing them to my head i guess. “Thank you to share such wonderful content!”

  67. I think Gary’s comment on talking about what you know is key. But, I also think it is important to remember that no-one ever knew what they know from birth, everyone learned everything. And we can too! Great article.

  68. Thanks for this great post! I actually listened to the archived webinar on HubSpot’s website and found it very useful. I volunteer for a nonprofit disability-related organization and we’re trying to gain more popularity.

  69. #13 is an excellent. For the longest time, I was just tweeting and worrying if anyone even cares. Interacting by replying to their tweets is an excellent action.

  70. I thought it was interesting to see 5 of the 60 make specific reference to Facebook or Twitter and not a single idea concerned Google+.

      • Ah hah. Now I see that. It was circulated on either Twitter or G+ as if it were new, yesterday.

        This is one reason I am not convinced that removing indicia of date of publishing from permalinks structure is a good idea. Thoughts?

        • I come from a corporate culture where ALL documentation has to be dated with revision dates for updates. I find it quite the contrast on the Internet where I have encountered the practice of undated articles. In one of my sites, I don’t date my articles except for the blog section (which only makes sense to have that chronological). Where I have time-relevant information, I make a statement in the article so that readers have the time reference.

          I have made the comment in one of Brian’s other pages that it would be helpful to have date reference in his pages. Realistically, I don’t expect Brian to have the time to read all comments and even if he read mine, he still may have reasons for not dating his articles.

          I configured my Facebook settings to not show my year of birth because I don’t want to show my age but people can pretty much infer that from my education and employment history. I suppose articles can be shy about showing their age as they want to appear current!

  71. Tom — believe it or not, this happened before Google+ launched! So it was just an idea in alpha development at the time. I’m sure if we redid the conference today, you’d hear a lot of Google+-ing! Thanks for the comment.

  72. #18. Jim Kukral. “Facebook advertising: you can run ads on profiles of people that work just within certain organizations!” -@jimkukral
    I have to try this with some of the local employers in my market area.

  73. I don’t agree with Guy Kawasaki about repeating Tweets–I unfollow EVERYONE who does that. I don’t follow robo Tweeters. I have fresh tweets or no Tweets. I hate reruns.

    • I hear you on that one. It’s why I stopped following Mother Jones on Twitter. It was a weird mix of exhausting and annoying seeing the same Tweets every four hours.

  74. I have unfollowed Tweeps who tweet at a rapid pace as to drown others out. I don’t mind repeated tweets as long as they are not too frequent. I recycle tweets over a period of several weeks. I agree fresh tweets are best but one reason for repeat tweets is for new followers.

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