I am a huge fan of the podcast BlogCast FM. Srinivas Rao, is an amazing guy, providing fantastic content for his listeners. I listen to his interviews with some of the top people in blogging and marketing, every single week. When I listened to his latest interview, a few days ago, I started thinking about one of his books.
It’s been a while since I’ve read The Small Army Strategy: A Guide for Turning Fans and Followers into Fanatics and Friends for Life, for the first time. But, it was such an interesting book, so I decided to read it again.
The thing about the book, is that it turns something complex, into something fairly easy to understand and it makes everything doable. It’s not just about blogging, but the strategy can be used for any business and for your personal life.
The goal is to treasure and nurture the attention you already have. That’s what I believe causes blog readers to turn into tribes and content to turn into movements.
I probably wouldn’t have used his exact words, but Srinivas Rao tells it like it is. And, I do agree with him, this is what it’s all about (online and offline):
If you have one takeaway from this book it’s this, GIVE A DAMN. Give so much of a damn that people depend on you and rely on you. Give so much of a damn that strangers feel compelled to share their challenges and struggles. You can’t put a ROI on giving a damn.
To me, blogging has mainly been about telling stories and turning what I have experienced into a story you can learn something from. I haven’t focused much on emotions, but that might be changing:
What makes any blog memorable is the author’s ability to invoke emotion in their readers and tell a good story.
When you read The Small Army Strategy you’ll understand that there is a lot of competition, and you’ll understand what you really should be focusing on:
The blogosphere is like an unlimited NBA draft with tons of talent accessible to anyone who can shed their ego and look for an opportunity to connect.
I use social media as a great way to connect with people, and a great way to build relationships.
You’ll never hear somebody say, that status update changed my life. Tweets and status updates don’t change lives. The shelf life of social media is far too short to have a meaningful impact on people you connect with. Tweets and status updates are like televisions commercials. Blog posts are like episodes of TV shows and larger bodies of work are like movies.
The quote from Chris Guillebeau provides a great overview of the book:
If you only have a few readers, treat them like the most important people in the world, because they are.
I highly recommend that you read The Small Army Strategy. It’s a fairly short book, it’s easy to read, you’ll read it in one sitting. But, it has a very powerful message. I’m sure that, after you’ve read it, you’ll understand what you should be focusing on, if you want to turn fans and followers into fanatics and friends for Life.