March 19, 2014

Stop begging on social, it looks pathetic

WARNING: Stop begging. You look pathetic.

Harassing people to share your content is not a social media strategy

Target audience: PR professionals, marketers, content creators, communicators.

David SparkIn a previous whitepaper, How to Trend on Twitter, I recommended that people blatantly ask for retweets because your followers want to help you out and would support you in your endeavors … up to a point.

But all of these pleas eventually start to have the reverse effect. If you constantly barrage your friends with RT and “please share” requests, they’re going to get irritated.

It’s like having a friend whom you’ve helped move once before but who asks you to do it again. Dude, hire some friggin’ movers!

The sentiment is the same when you continuously beg for RTs. Dude, hire a friggin’ publicist!

When retweets turn into a relationship-destroying strategy

Begging for RTs is not a marketing strategy. It’s a relationship-destroying strategy.

HazardousSocial150“Entitlement abounds on the social web with so many communications starting with ‘give me,’ ‘do this for me,’ or ‘share this with your fans’ without anyone ever thinking to create value first,” complained Lee Odden (@LeeOdden), author of Optimize CEO at TopRank Online Marketing, and editor at

“Asking for retweets is simply unnecessary,” noted illustrator Len Peralta (@lenperalta), “Either your content is compelling or it isn’t.”

“Earned attention comes from an investment in your community with real returns, not just superficial social shares. Creating value in meaningful and interesting ways before ‘the ask’ represents the kind of social media engagement that motivates action, and attracts even more fans,” said Odden.

This post is an excerpt from the ebook “Hazardous to Your Social Media Health: 50 Previously Condoned Behaviors We No Longer Recommend.” Includes insights and quotes from 56 social media influencers. Get your copy of the ebook for free.David Spark, a partner in, helps businesses grow by developing thought leadership through storytelling and covering live events. Contact David by email, follow him on Twitter and Google Plus or leave a comment below.

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