Popularize your content through key influencers and promoters
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So you've completed your masterpiece, and now you want to spread word about it.  Or maybe you're working on a viral marketing campaign to popularize your blog or web site. The best way to do this is by getting popular people to help you promote your stuff to their fans and friends, rather than plain-old-you trying to do it by yourself. But it's not as simple as just asking someone out of the blue to retweet your link or share it on their Facebook page. It is important to first build a strong relationship with the person weeks in advance, and it is also important to watch how you approach them when asking them to promote your article or blog post or whatever it may be.

Where to find key influencers

Where to find key influencers
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1- Start with your own network

Start with seeking out popular people in your networks, be it someone you know on Facebook, Twitter, or in real life.

2- Use klout to find key influencers in any given field on any social media platform

klout is a web site that helps you top influencers in any given feild. You can use it to find people who are influential in the specific area that your content is about. Tip: focus on the bloggers. Once you've found a few people, you can start building a relationship with them before asking them for any favors.

3- Use Followerwonk to find them on twitter

Followerwonk allows you to find key influencers with advances search criteria such as topic, location, and more

4- Use Tumblr Explore to find bloggers on that platform

Followerwonk allows you to find key influencers with advances search criteria such as topic, location, and more

How to build strong relationships with key influencers

Building a strong relationship with your promoters
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1- Become engaged in their blogs or videos

You'll earn credibility on the long run if you actively interact and comment on their posts. These people get lots of requests from people and can't realistically respond to all of them all the time. Being actively engaged in their content will get you noticed and you're more likely to be given preference when you have a request for them.

2- Be genuine

It is easy to tell when someone is engaging in content just for the purpose of puching their own agenda rather than out of genuine interest in the content. That is why it helps to comment in content that you are genuinely interested in.

3- Give them a nice review

This is the best way to get their attention. Your key influencer is always actively promoting his/her own content, products, services, or whatever it may be. When someone else does it for them, it usually means a lot to them and they'll remember you when you ask them for a favor.

You can do this by simply tweeting or posting a good review of a specific aspect of their blog or business that they have been trying to promote recently.

How to ask key influencers for their help

How to ask key influencers for their help
Credit: http://www.pickthebrain.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/Ask-for-Help.jpg

1- Identify a problem that your common audience is having--

a problem that your content will help them solve.  Or, identify the benefits of your article or video and tell the influencer that you think their fans would like it or find it useful.

2- Don't ask for the retweet

That's right, don't explicitly ask for them to share your stuff. There are many reasons why this is a very bad idea. Firstly, it's because that's what most people do, and they'll just see you as another freeloader. Second, when you directly ask them, they have to choose between sharing your content and looking like a jerk. And no one likes to be put in that position.

All you should be telling them is, "I made this video about _____ and I thought you might be interested in it. By the way, feel free to share it with your fans." Or "I wrote this article about _____ and I thought your fans might find it useful, so if you like it, feel free to share it with them." This leaves the ultimate choice up to them, rather than telling them to do it, and people are more likely to want to do something if they feel like they aren't being pressured to do it by someone else.

3- Use your favors sparingly

If you keep asking the same person over and over again to share your stuff, you'll be seen as the annoying freeloader who only goes to him to promote your content. Even going back twice in the same month or so is a bit too much. Save your requests for your most important content, the ones you feel you've worked hard on and deserve a lot of extra attention. For lesser content, promote it yourself and don't rely on influencers for every little thing.

4- A little thanks goes a long way

You wont explicitly ask someone for their help, but when they do help you promote your content, be sure to axpress your grattitude and even tell them how you gained from their help. "Thank you so much! Ever since you shared my post, I gained over a hundred followers!"  Your appreciation will encourage them to continue to help you in the future.

5- Not everyone will be able to help you all the time-- don't take it personally

You might think "Gosh, what's so hard about sharing my stuff, what's he gonna lose out of it?" People don't always understand this, but it's not as simple as that. There are a lot of reasons why key influencers may not be able to share your stuff, the biggest reason of them all being that it could damage their reputation in some cases.  If your content is of low quality or not directly related to the promoter's brand, it will be harmful to their reputation to share your content. To avoid this, make sure you have quality content and make sure your content is directly relevant to that person's brand.

Another reason they may not be able to promote your content is the sheer volume of requests they may be getting from other people. If  they just share everyone's stuff, their twitter feed or facebook page becomes an advertising platform for everyone else. This is also bad for their own personal brand, so key influencers avoid promoting other peoples' content. In light of that, if they don't share your stuff, refine your content and try again after a few weeks.

As you can see, it is very important to build strong relationships if you want your content to have a lot of exposure. However, you want to use your favors sparingly, as people may eventually get tired of promoting your content all the time. As I said before, only ask people to promote your content when you have really good content, when you feel that you've crafted a masterpeice. For all your other content, there are various platforms and different ways in which you can promote it yourself.