You’ve done your due diligence.

You’ve invested in all the platforms you need to use to create buzz, you’ve hired staff to create that buzz or boned up on practical methods to do it yourself. You’ve called a printer for promotional slicks then thought better of that route. You cyber stalked the companies you think have it down pat and tried to figure out their special sauce.

You’ve researched marketing methods until you’re blue in the face. You created a respectable web presence with people who like what you have to offer and have even subscribed to your YouTube channel and are following you on Instagram and Facebook.

So… now what?

How do you get people to go to your website? How do you engage them enough to keep coming back to see what’s new on Facebook? In essence, how do you create that cult following on social media that you keep hearing about? The answer is simple: be interesting.

Easier said than done, right?

For most companies this is the hardest thing to do consistently. And it is the most important thing to affect the success of modern businesses. While there is no real magic, there are some things you can do to make sure you are visible to who will potentially butter your bread. These ideas won’t come across as disingenuous or irrelevant if done properly. Indeed, if you execute these well, the people you are reaching toward will tell their friends who will start following you, and then those friends will tell other friends, and the cycle goes on. (This is word of mouth marketing and you want it to work in your favor rather than against you).

Here are some ways to make your products or services appealing to the people who matter most to your business:

Don’t sell.

That’s right. Don’t sell. Seems like that’s counter-productive to your end goal, doesn’t it? But the fact is when you sell to people you run the risk of alienating them. They feel like they have to decide what to do right away. It’s like you’ve put them on the spot.

Think about when people walk up to you and ask for money. You have to decide right then and there whether you are going to give to this person or not. There are so many emotions that go into that decisions – how much money you have available at the time, how long it will take, do they really need it, is anyone else watching and if so, what do they think, etc. Sometimes that collection of thoughts pushes you to give money, sometimes its doesn’t, but rarely do you decide to do either because you wanted to – you were forced into action. Pitching to the folks that joined your newsletter or social media page has the same affect.

Provide usable, interesting content.

Instead of trying to sell your item, teach your audience about something. If you sell acrylic paint, create a 6 minute tutorial on how to create a textured background. Use your paints in the video, but don’t talk about them. Trust me, they’ll see. If you sell cooking utensils, write an article about kitchen hacks that will save time during a weeknight dinner. Throw in a recipe another week. Reference using tools with the names you have your products, but don’t suggest they use them. They will because they are on your site and it’s easy to just click the link you have placed in your feed.


Get into conversations with the people following you. Ask a question that is related to your industry and let the conversation flow. When people feel like they have connected with a company and the people that mingle on their page, they are more inclined to come back. There are several examples of this of Facebook in the fitness arena. They create a community that discusses successes and struggles with the workouts, the teachers interact with the posters, and everyone signs up for the next workout so they can talk about it all over again the next week. Take a page from their playbooks.

Give a little to get a little.

After you have built a solid network of people who come to the site regularly, give something away. Maybe you ask a trivia question related to the industry, maybe you host a contest for the best sunny side up egg – whatever you choose, keep it light. Don’t require a purchase to enter the contest. Just let people enjoy the interaction and you’ll find that people will buy more even if hey don’t win the item.

The key to creating a cult following is leading people without letting them know it. Let them have fun in the process and enjoy the community that results and they will never know that you lead them to the water. You should be having fun too. If you’re not it is possible that your audience isn’t either and the whole plan should be revisited.