How to Create a Deep Connection with Your Readers
Why do you keep coming back to Quick Sprout? Maybe it’s because you are learning a lot from me, or maybe it’s because I’ve helped you grow your business.
Although those are contributing factors, they aren’t the main reason you come back. So, what makes you keep coming back?
Over the years, I’ve built a deep connection with you. I’ve used a handful of techniques to build a relationship so strong that it’s even helped me generate $100,000 in 24 hours when I had products or services to offer.
So, how did I build this deep connection with you? And how can you do the same?
Step #1: Cultivate compassion
What’s one thing that you hate? Being judged, right? We all hate being judged, which is why I do the opposite… I’ve been developing and cultivating compassion.
You tend to be more open and feel a deeper connection when you are compassionate.
The way I’ve cultivated compassion toward you is by caring about you. No matter what you need in life, I try to be there for you and help you out.
I received the above email from a Quick Sprout reader, asking me to help him grow his traffic and to give him money. Although I get a lot of emails, I really do try to help everyone out. So, I donated $10 to this guy.
The reader was happy I donated money, and he followed up with me asking if I could help increase his traffic now. Although I didn’t have the time to take on the work, I did jump on a 30-minute call, giving him a ton of marketing tips.
Why did I do this? Because I truly care about my readers. I felt bad when I read about the reader’s battle with cancer, so I thought I would help.
Here’s another email I got from Andrew Medal, who reads Quick Sprout on a regular basis. He made some mistakes when he was young, and it caused him to go to prison.
I jumped on the phone with him and gave him advice. We now communicate regularly through email. He’s been such a good student that he has been getting his content published on sites like Entrepreneur Magazine by following my playbook.
If you can cultivate compassion toward your readers, you will build a deep connection. It’s worked so well that people like Andrew have even offered to introduce me to people such as editors at Time Magazine (I’ve never been published on that site).
Step #2: Create an open environment
People are shy. No matter what you do, some of your readers won’t tell you what’s on their minds because they are shy.
So, how do you combat this? You make it clear to your readers that you’ll never judge them and that they can ask you anything. A good example of this is the following exchange that took place on one of my blogs. A reader asked:
What’s a title tag?
I responded with:
It’s a code that goes within your HTML file. It tells a search engine what your page is about. Think of it as a book title. You can also preform a Google search and you’ll see examples of title tags… it’s the blue links in the search results. Email me at [email protected] if you need help with your title tags.
As you can see, I didn’t bash the reader or talk down to them. I was kind; I took the time to respond; and I even gave out my personal email address.
Do you know what the end result was? Not only did the individual email me asking for help… but I got around 20 other readers emailing me asking for help with basic on-page SEO. That means more connections.
By being open and letting people communicate with you in private ways, you allow your shy readers to build a connection with you.
Step #3: Be generous
You don’t necessarily have to do this from a financial point of view. You can do this with your time as well.
Just look at all the guides on Quick Sprout. I’ve given away hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of information, all free.
I go above and beyond to help people—so much that you notice it. And my friends constantly tell me I’m too generous.
But when someone bashes me on Quick Sprout, you back me up. Why? Because you know I’ve done a lot to help others.
Whether it is through your content or by helping your readers directly, always try to be generous. I’ve done this through the Quick Sprout University and the guides on Quick Sprout.
And I’m going to start doing even more by holding weekly webinars in the next month or so. I plan to spend at least 30 minutes during each webinar, answering all of your business questions…all for free.
Now, keep in mind that being generous can bite you in the butt. I’ve helped some of my readers get up to $15,000 in monthly income, and then they tried to copy some of my businesses.
Nonetheless, I don’t stop being generous, and I try to kill those individuals with kindness. Why? Because I really do enjoy putting smiles on people’s faces. If that means I get a few bad apples along the way…so be it.
Step #4: Make time for your readers
In any good relationship, both parties have to put in their time. Without it, a deep connection cannot be formed.
Each and every day, you need to be blocking off time for your readers. Whether it is an hour or even 30 minutes…something is better than nothing.
Just look at me—I spend hours each week responding to comments. Why? Because I want to get to know you on a deeper level, and that involves me taking the time necessary to get to know you.
When doing this, I’m hoping that you respond back and try to get to know me better. It’s also why I have an elaborate contact page. I explicitly tell people what to contact me for, which allows me to build more relationships versus dealing with sales people trying to pitch me stuff.
Step #5: Open up
What’s one thing that most married couples do? They share with each other just about everything, right?
If you aren’t open, people won’t get to know you. And once you open up, you’ll find that it encourages other people to be transparent and open with you.
Over time, this will allow you to get to know your readers and for them to get to know you.
The best way to do this is through an About page. Just look at mine.
I not only have created a funny cartoon that describes what I like, but I’ve also shared my life story.
If you are struggling to open up, just follow the steps in this blog post. It will teach you how to create an effective About page.
Step #6: Take the conversation offline
There is only so much you can do on the web. For this reason, I also cultivate my relationships offline.
Sure, I can’t get to know every single one of my Quick Sprout readers, but I do see a good portion of them at conferences or meet-ups. By attending the major events and speaking at conferences within the marketing industry, I’m bound to run into a handful of Quick Sprout readers.
Over the years, this in-person contact—more than any web tactic I used—has helped me build deeper connections. Plus, it’s also helped me gain new readers with whom I’ve built a connection before they even started reading my blog.
The next time you see a big industry event, make sure you attend it. You’ll build deeper connections with your readers, and you’ll maybe even learn a thing or two from the event.
Step #7: Always follow through on your word
The most important lesson I’ve learned about building deep connections is that your word is your bond. If you can’t carry through on your promises, you’ll end up losing people’s trust.
For this reason, I keep all of my promises…even when I get drunk…which is rare. Sometimes it does happen, and I make really dumb promises such as helping people out financially. But no matter how ridiculous my drunk promise was, I always keep it.
When you tell your readers you are going to do something, stick with it. For example, you know that I respond to comments because I’ve told you that I’ll always respond to you. No matter how busy I am, I still do it because I promised you I would.
If you back out on your word, you’ll instantly lose your connection with your readers.
Building a connection with your readers isn’t hard. If you follow the 7 steps I’ve laid out, you will not only get to know your readers but you’ll also develop a deep connection with them.
So, how else can you build a deep connection with your readers?