Have you ever entered, or been nominated for an award, only to find that you have to amass votes (or comments on a blog) in order to get through to the next round, or even to win? That can be exciting, but a daunting prospect too. However, there are a huge number of ways that you can get in touch with people who will be only too happy to help. And one of the best ways to let them know you need their help is by making the most of all the social networks that you are part of.
Here are my top tips, based on what’s worked for me recently:
Post the link to vote, with a short but compelling message as to why people should vote for you on your business page. Share that post onto your personal timeline and promote (now called boost) the post so that more of your friends see it more prominently in their newsfeed
Direct message your friends with a link to the voting page (note you can’t do this in bulk any more)
Ask admins of business Pages that you have contact with (maybe local ones you know from networking) to share the post on their Pages for you
Similarly, ask friends to share your post to their timeline or business Page. (You might very well be pleasantly surprised that your friends and contacts spread the news without you even asking. People do love to help!)
Post a link and ask for votes in Facebook groups that you belong to (and you can often post a reminder too). Do make sure you choose groups where you are established, though, or you risk being viewed as a spammer.
If you are active on LinkedIn, you can include requests for votes in your status updates at regular intervals (but I’d suggest no more than once a day as your updates here hang around for longer than on Facebook or Twitter.)
If you have a Company Page, don’t forget to share a link and request for votes here too.
Go into the discussion groups you are normally active in (you risk a hostile response if you visit one for the first time just to get votes) and start a new discussion with a link and request to vote. A nice touch here might be to offer to respond to a question about something covered by your area of expertise as a thank you.
Don’t forget that you can use the direct message facility here to ask your connections directly to vote for you. Make the message seem as personal as possible, and choose 50 people at a time to send it to from your list of connections (don’t forget to uncheck the box at the bottom so that each recipient doesn’t get to see the name of every other recipient appear in their inbox!).
This strategy has worked particularly well for me and can be the start of a good many conversations. At the very least, you’re reminding your business contacts that you’re there and good enough to be nominated for an award.
Hopefully you’re pretty active here and sharing several tweets a day. If that’s the case then you can tweet the link and a short request to vote for you several times a day (but do give it a rest for one or two days completely.) You can schedule in the tweets using s tool like Hootsuite but remember to go in and check for responses on a regular basis as you’ll find lots of people you haven’t tweeted with for a while are likely to respond and re-tweet you. Tweet specific people you know will help you, directly, with an @ mention and ask for a vote. Pick those with large networks and ask them to re-tweet your request to their followers. Join in conversations where you can add value and ask for a cheeky vote at the end. To make it feel more personal, for specific contacts where you feel this would work, send them a direct message (if they are following you) and ask for a vote. This might work well with clients or suppliers, or people with positions of influence who might not want to be seen as favouring one contestant over another.
Don’t forget to send an email to your contacts, with a cheeky headline that gives it a chance of being opened. If you use an email client such as mailchimp, you can send the same email to those that didn’t open it the first time, with a different headline. Again, offering help in return for a vote is a nice touch.
You can always ask people to ask others in their office, class, group or whatever, to vote for you. I got 14 votes from one small office because one of my contacts told his colleagues they should vote!
Make the most of all the groups and societies you belong to (networking and social) by asking the organizer or secretary to spread the word for you. Often people are only too happy to help – they just need to be asked!
Online is great, but don’t forget to ask people for a vote face-to-face at business events, work and social gatherings. Most of us have smart phones now, so it will only take a minute to find the link and vote.
Oh – and when you win, or get through to the next round, don’t forget to share that news out on all the channels you have used, preferably with a photo. People who have voted will be genuinely interested in how you have got on!
Have I missed any strategies that have worked for you? Let me know in the comments!
Hope this gives you some good ideas to get out there with. Good luck!