Retweeted by the enemy: Gaining social influence

Retweeted by the enemy: Gaining social influence

As I stared at the Connect screen on Twitter I couldn’t quite believe the reach my blog post had received. Accenture, my employer’s number one competitor, had mentioned me and the post I’d just published with MyCustomer. Twice.


IBM and Dunn & Bradstreet had also done the same.

This success has been a long-time coming and is thanks to some incredible and generous editors at Econsultancy, Smart Insights and MyCustomer who gave my content a shot. In reaching this point (which is by no means the end or even the middle), I’ve learned some lessons.

Let me to share these lessons with as a set of principles that may help you in building your social presence.

Principle one: Build yourself as a brand

If it’s not useful, interesting and of high quality I won’t write it. This means that I don’t write on schedule, I write when I want about subjects that I would be interested in. Don’t sell out.

Principle two: Thinking and writing are of equal importance

One of my favourite writers is Seth Godin. Not because of how he writes but because of how he thinks. He applies principles of maths, philosophy and art to marketing and management to provide a fresh perspective. Learning to think with greater insight is more important than being able to write with greater flourish.

Priciple three: Be confident in your point of view

Take a stand. Be a contrarian in your industry. This is especially easy when vendors are pushing a concept heavily. The key thing though is to have thought through the opinion and to believe in it.

Principle four: Let your writing be your art

I do not write for retweets, mentions, likes, pay, comments, backlinks or job offers. It is my hobby and I value the freedom, honesty and creativity it allows me. Writing for these reasons is more motivating that any other reason and ensures that I remain true to the first principle.

I’m simply enjoying the journey

There is no goal to my writing. I do not expect it to earn me a certain amount of money or attention. I don’t expect to reach a point where I say “I’m done, it’s finished. My writing and thinking is complete!”

However there is purpose in my writing. I believe strongly that marketing and business can be improved through the smart use of technology and the application of researched evidence. That’s the message I want to spread.

What do you believe in and when are you going to start spreading it…

David Sealey is a trusted adviser to senior executives on getting the most from their investment in digital and data. David created Storm81 as a place to share his passion for business, digital technologies, multichannel marketing and everything else around these topics.

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