Editor's note: This post was originally published as a guest post on Advertising Week Social Explorer.
If I learned anything from The Wonder Years, it’s that having friends on your side makes dealing with girls and bullies easier. When it comes to growing your email list, those same buddies who put up their fists for you in the schoolyard can do wonders (har har) for generating buzz and taking your audience places that you couldn’t travel to on your own – like a Colorado ski lodge.
What's in it for me?
Make them an offer they can’t refuse if they bring a friend on board. Reward those “power sharers” with coupons, access to special content and that lovely little rumor that Becky’s friend Hannah’s sister’s boyfriend told Becky.
Lunchroom gossip isn't all bad.
Create calls to action for current members to share with their social platforms. Make use of social media platforms for recipients to easily find you and/or spread the word and/or tell your parents that you’re at the library when you’re really…well, you know.
Let's hang out after class.
Interact with your customers – and come from a place of yes. Post questions on Twitter, respond to inquiries, monitor hashtags, agree to write guest blog posts, RSVP to speak at an event and participate in neighborhood block parties when there’s free food involved.
Make sound decisions, son.
Invest in ad space where your potential customers frequent. Is that Facebook? A car repair shop? The Chamber of Commerce? Advancing your audience converts the coins in the jar from copper to silver-colored.
Don't forget the formative years.
Nothing turns me off faster than the wrong their, they’re or there being used. Write coherently and passionately, engaging customers with your message rather than distracting with the incorrect version of its. Why should they have faith in you if you flunked elementary school?
Show, don't tell.
If you manage a food blog, then I want to see the steaming gourmet burger in my Inbox as I stumble over myself to click for the recipe. I want to share the recipe with my mom – who will recommend that my grandpa make it for our next picnic. You may have just gotten two new subscribers from me – all with a picture of a burger.
What a delicious life of wonder.