Courtesy: A winning strategy for promoting

People who publish content on the web generally want to be read. Be it a marketer, writer or anyone else. If they wanted their thoughts or the information they have to remain private they'd keep a personal journal or write on their word processors and let dust collect on their thoughts as they wither
away on a hard drive. For marketers it makes perfect sense to turn to the web.
Image credit: Pixabay

One way marketers look to become read is to publish their content and then promote it. While there is nothing wrong with promoting oneself with the goal to build a following (and hopefully a conversion!), it is important to observe good etiquette and courtesy while doing it.

Rudely promoting oneself is typically not well-received and, in the long-run, it tends to have an impact the way people perceive the name or brand. In order to develop a good strategy on the web, it is important to understand the courtesy that comes with posting in various Internet communities and social media outlets. 

Many communities are tight-knit, have rules and do not take kindly to people barging in with self-promotional or spammy motives in mind. Things to think about when seeking to promote work online:

Become a Part of the Community

Most online communities openly greet new members. After all, the more the merrier, and new members often offer fresh perspectives and discussion topics of interest. People who join communities and want to be a genuine part of the group are typically warmly welcomed with open arms. On the other hand, it's often not well received if a person or brand signs up for various sites with the intent to self-promote their content and don’t commit themselves to actually “joining” the community.

Have you ever been a part of an Internet community where you log in and there are 50 posts from someone posting various links? Do you ever read them or do you filter the person if that option is available? A marketer who joins a community with the intent to post links to boost visibility and doesn’t participate will typically find it is going to backfire pretty quickly.

A better approach is to join the community, be truly interested (if not, then don't join!), and truly become integrated and be committed to the group. Over the course of time contributors become trusted and valued members and, if they decide to link their promotions, people will take it seriously and be more likely to follow or trust any shared links.

Don't Spam

It is considered rude to visit a website, or group of websites, drop a bunch of links and then leave. Even if the person doesn't leave, it is important to only promote oneself where it makes sense. Don't post multiple links.

Dropping by websites and linking promotional content is not going to be well-received if it looks like spam. And, if a focus is completely on self-promotion, then this will likely be looked at as spam. Proper linking takes careful thought and consideration for those who frequent the website. Don't be rude, think of the community and readers who regularly spend time on the site. Only use links where appropriate and where they will add value to the group.

If linking through social media, be active in sharing non-promotional content too. Strive to find content that would be of interest and/or helpful to followers.

Be Sure Links are Relevant

Marketers who link their articles to various corners on the web should be sure they are relevant and are on topic. It's poor netiquette to flood various websites and forums with links that are not relatable, useful or lead to further information a reader is seeking. When linking to other sites, be sure to consider the audience. While in theory, it is self-promotion, the key is to offer something that is of value to web readers.

By sticking to sites where there is truly an interest, this is the winning part of any strategy. Instead of using a forceful way to promote, aim for the polite and courteous approach. While it's likely to take some time, in the end, is a win-win for all.


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