Internet marketers have been siphoning the life out of online communities for their own personal benefit for decades… It’s gotten worse. Most online communities are nothing but blogspam cesspools.
Marketers are “siphoning” leads, rather than “withdrawing” them…
When you withdrawal something, it’s implied that you must deposit something first. And you must deposit at least the equal amount that you intend to withdrawal. That’s what this is all about. You’re going to deposit large amounts of value into The Bank of The Social Internet… Then you will withdrawal marketing currency in the form of high-quality leads.
There’s 5 steps…
STEP 1: Find your hyper-active target communities
There’s a lot of power in knowing where your target audience lurks online. Sometimes it’s a specific website, sometimes it’s a forum, sometimes it’s a chat room or something else. The point is, you want to find the hyper-active spots where your audience is congregating and focus there. If you’re product is in a very specific niche, you may do best to google for forums in your specific niche and pick one that’s active. The ones that rank at the top of google organically are likely a good place to start since they’re obviously getting traffic.
You might land on:
- Facebook Groups
- Deviant Art
- LinkedIn Groups
For instance, if you have a business that sells smart phone add-ons, search and find that niche on Quora… There’s a ton of places to try…
STEP 2: Find the popular spots in those communities
Now it’s time to find the popular spots… You’ve got to find the big mob of target leads. You’ve got to find that big party and you’ve got to blend in with them. There’s two ways to do this.
- Use a a low-cost traffic spying tool like SEMrush to tell you which pages have the most views per day and rank the highest organically.
- Figure it out the rough but free way by clicking around and getting a vibe for how traffic organically flows (Particularly if its not an index-able web page like a chat room).
Sticking with our example, on a less-structured site like Quora, you might not really find pillars like this, since it really is just a basic structured forum, in this case, skip this step.
STEP 3: Scour for unfulfilled questions
Okay, now that your on a virtual podium in front of your target audience, here’s what you should do… Help people by answering their questions! For instance, again, sticking with our example, my smartphone topic search gave me a highly relevant question on phone preferences with plenty of comments. It additionally has 72 people actively following this. So, not only will it rank high organically, but it will alert those 72 people when you answer it. That’s one of the benefits of Quora, but they all have little features you can find and take tactical advantage of. Your job on this virtual podium is to answer these questions perfectly. All eyes are on you now.
STEP 4: Take an immense amount of time and put in a ton of effort to answer the questions flawlessly
In most cases, the questions aren’t answered or at least not answered well. The best answers address the questions with in-depth personal proven experience on the topics and reference all sorts of facts and figures to support them. They’re also written in a very clear format that makes it easy to pull the highlights for anyone who might see it and not want to comb through a multiple paragraph answer to find the basics of the answer. These responses should be extremely thorough and well-thought and completely unbiased by what you’re selling.
NOTE: You could also theoretically find questions so relative to content you’ve already produced that you can use it in place of an answer with minor tweaks… But BE WARNED, consumers are savvy and if they figure out that you’re doing that they will not be as appreciative, and rightfully so since it’s not as genuine and custom of an answer.
Your answer needs to not only deliver in full the perfect response to the question, but should evoke a deep interest in talking with you further. This is critical… They must be intrigued! The reason for that is that you CANNOT click-bait people to your site. It’s simply not a sustainable strategy. You have to give your FULL answer up-front on the community site or you’ll be taken down.
You almost always be limited to a tiny, non-pushy link as your call-to-action… So, why would someone click through? Not because you withholding the finer details of your answer on your site, but rather because your answer was so good, that anyone who really benefited from it, would probably naturally benefit from whatever other content you have or products and services you sell.
STEP 5: Provide the proper CTA for the community (and sometimes get admins to bend the rules for you)
Okay, so here’s the tricky part. Many online communities have guidelines nowadays on what you can and cannot do in terms of redirecting traffic. Look for rules… For instance, one specific forum condemns “blog spam” yet allows for announcements of new blogs and the sharing of highly relevant URLs with content that can’t be easily inserted into the forum.
Many forums are restrictive, but if your answer was fantastic, delivered in full, and highly genuine, and you’re a good member of that community, you’ll in many cases be permitted by the admins of that community. Ideally, you’ll be able to post a small link to your site on something closely related to the answer you’d just provided.
But still, sometimes you’ll be told you cannot ever link to your own site… If that’s the case, think creatively or just ask the admins directly! For instance, did you have to create an account on this community to post? Maybe you could ask them to PM you. You could even call out to “anyone dealing with this” and ask them to PM you. Or maybe you can post to a third-party site that links directly to you.
Sometimes, even if you bend the guidelines, if your information is highly relevant, you’ll get a pass, and that pass could potentially be worth thousands of dollars if traffic depending on the amount of people that see your response and CTA.
Deposit regularly, withdrawal regularly.
The beauty of these type of strategy is that it enables you to combine these 3 things.
- A limited marketing budget
- High-quality leads
For some, this is the only way to get a business off the ground. For others, it’s a great way to ensure a positive ROI if other traditional sources are falling them.
Whatever your case may be, you should consider opening a marketing account at The Bank of The Social Internet.