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A writing tip from Malcolm Gladwell's "Tipping Point"

In Malcolm Gladwell's "Tipping Point," he writes about a writer's best friend, the connector. Connectors are not just people who have a lot of friends. Like Hercules, these types have access to the most powerful people, but still walk among us mere mortals. They are skilled social warriors, masters of the casual connection, seized by anyone's attention and naturally binding people together. And we thank them, because these (fewer than) 20 percent of people dominate (more than) 80 percent of the social power that connects us.


Do writers need connectors?
Writers would rather our message be the tidal wave. We produce amazing copy, and the message ripples from one person to another until the deluge is unstopped. So why isn't your hard work on Twitter or Facebook paying off? According to Malcolm Gladwell, the power of word of mouth is not a domino effect, but a game of telephone that goes viral once the message whispers into the ear of a connector. Here's some proof of this in action: Kevin Allocca: Why videos go viral.


If you want your work to be read, here's three tips
You may know how to write like Shakespeare, but you need these connectors to create organic buzz. If our social circles are indeed a pyramid, here are the stairs to get to the top:

1. Become a connector: To be a connector, you must to talk to a lot of people. Not only people within your direct network, you must rub shoulders with people from all walks of life.
  • Evaluate your present audience.
  • Work harder to make all traffic sources more effective, including social, email, search and direct.
  • Create content that encourages personal engagement.
  • Constantly respond to comments and recognize others.

2. Find other connectors: Who are the most social people in your audience? Start creating a list of these people.
  • Identify the users who like the most posts, retweet the most and comment the most on your blogs.  
  • Reach out to fans who frequently post quality content relevant to your audience.
  • Connect with a brand that can benefit from your work and vice versa.
  • Share their content and give them special content.
  • Find people who know lots of people.
  • Learn how they build and maintain their audience.

3. Join the connector community: The more social your community, the larger your message. If you learn nothing else from sports (e.g., Miami Heat), stacking your team with the best players is the sure fire way to win games. To get more connectors involved with your brand, create a connector community.
  • Know what these networks need, and supply it.
  • Link connectors with similar goals and content; they may connect you with someone of value. We all appreciate reciprocity.
  • Join a variety of online groups and comment! If you join a group on Linkedin, make sure to say something. Also, why not start a group?

Who are on top of their social pyramid? Check out the top twitter rankings at Twitaholic.com and here are the Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers, 2013.

Have more tips? Comment below!
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