Home  › Social › Social Media

How to Win Friends and Influence People on the Internet

  |  August 1, 2012   |  Comments

Six ways to make people like you as it applies to online.

neher-peopleOne of the most common questions that I am asked about social media marketing is, "How do I get people to like/follow/fan/friend me?" My answer is, "The same way that you would in the real world. Be nice and interesting."

Yet many businesses still struggle with how to get people to like them online. Sure, there are strategies, tips, and tactics that I could share that drive "likes," but really, it comes down to making people like you in the real world.

In the real world, the question of how to make people like you was answered many years ago by Dale Carnegie (I was once a Dale Carnegie coach in my early 20s), whose book sold over 15 million copies. The principles for making people like you in the real world are the same as online.

6 Ways to Make People Like You as It Applies to Online

  1. Become genuinely interested in other people. One of the best ways to get people interested in you is to be interested in them. Broadcasting one-way messages on social media, or hoping that people will be interested in your promotional updates doesn't work well. Take a real and authentic interest in your audience. Show that you are interested in them and what they think about your product, your company, or the category that you are in. Have conversations with your audience and actually talk to them. Be real and genuine about it.
  2. Smile. It is hard to smile online. ;-) And yes, that smiley-face icon is way overused (in my opinion ;-). In social media, you can create a friendly smiling persona by being nice to people. Be positive and upbeat, and take a moment or two out of each day to do something nice.
  3. Remember that a person's name is, to that person, the sweetest and most important sound in any language. Online, we sometimes get so caught up in mass communications that we forget the power of individually asking people for their support with something.

    Nobody wants to be addressed as just another person on your list - they want personal attention. Take the time to be personal with your customers (especially those who are your biggest advocates and fans). Remember that they want to be treated like an individual, not one of many of your customers.
  4. Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves. I recently watched a movie where the main character was somewhat of a pick-up artist. One of the keys to picking up hot girls was to get them talking about themselves. We sometimes get so caught up in what we are posting on social media sites that we forget to encourage others to talk about themselves, on their terms.

    Take time to really listen to people and develop actual relationships. Get them talking and facilitate or participate in the conversation.
  5. Talk in terms of the other person's interests. This is vital to any kind of marketing. Talk in terms of the other person's interests - not your own. Take some time and put yourself in their shoes - what are they actually interested in talking about? It might not be the same agenda as what yours is, but when you talk in terms of their interests they like you more.
  6. Make the other person feel important - and do it sincerely. This is a big miss by many companies. When you look at people and their deeper needs, wants, and desires, one thing that most people want is to feel important.

    How do you make your customers feel important? Can you promote them online? Can you make them the hero? Rather than focusing on how they can make you feel bigger and better, ask yourself how you can help them.


ClickZ Live Chicago Join the Industry's Leading eCommerce & Direct Marketing Experts in Chicago
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 4 days and 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda and register by Friday, Oct 3 to take advantage of Early Bird Rates!


Krista Neher

Krista Neher is the author of the bestselling Social Media Field Guide, an international speaker, and currently CEO of Boot Camp Digital, which is a leading provider of social media marketing training and consulting solutions. Krista is a social media pioneer, creating one of the first successful corporate Twitter strategies and corporate blogs - long before "social media" was even a recognized term. After spending nearly six years at Procter and Gamble working on some of the biggest and most successful product launches, Krista went on to become the vice president of marketing at an Internet start-up.

Krista started Boot Camp Digital in 2008 and has created training programs for hundreds of advertising agencies, marketing departments and small and medium business owners in social media marketing. Krista also works with a variety of educational institutions on their social media programs and is currently working on a textbook on social media marketing.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

Get ClickZ Social newsletters delivered right to your inbox. Subscribe today!



Featured White Papers

IBM: Social Analytics - The Science Behind Social Media Marketing

IBM Social Analytics: The Science Behind Social Media Marketing
80% of internet users say they prefer to connect with brands via Facebook. 65% of social media users say they use it to learn more about brands, products and services. Learn about how to find more about customers' attitudes, preferences and buying habits from what they say on social media channels.

An Introduction to Marketing Attribution: Selecting the Right Model for Search, Display & Social Advertising

An Introduction to Marketing Attribution: Selecting the Right Model for Search, Display & Social Advertising
If you're considering implementing a marketing attribution model to measure and optimize your programs, this paper is a great introduction. It also includes real-life tips from marketers who have successfully implemented attribution in their organizations.


    • Internet Marketing Campaign Manager
      Internet Marketing Campaign Manager (Straight North, LLC) - Downers GroveWe are looking for a talented Internet Marketing Campaign Manager...
    • Internet Marketing Specialist
      Internet Marketing Specialist (InteractRV) - DallasInternet Marketing Specialist InteractRV - Anywhere Telecommute, USA SEM | SEO | Content Creator...
    • Tier 1 Support Specialist
      Tier 1 Support Specialist (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreThis position requires a highly motivated and multifaceted individual to contribute to and be...