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21 Tips to Seed a Conversation

You’ve heard us say before that the primary goal of your PR efforts should be to tell a story worth talking about. When you tell a good story about your brand, your fans and customers will naturally want to share it with their friends, sparking conversations and ultimately leading to new business.

These conversations should arise organically – don’t try to control them or you’ll simply shut them down. However, there are things you can do to seed and guide the conversations people are having.

Here are 21 tips for seeding conversations, online or offline:

  1. First and foremost, make sure you have something worth talking about.
  2. Ask open-ended questions.
  3. Listen more than you speak.
  4. Don’t make it all about you.
  5. Remember that what you choose not to say is just as important as what you say.
  6. Don’t try to please everyone.
  7. Go where people are already talking.
  8. Reward your fans for sharing your message.
  9. Hold some information back. Make your fans want it.
  10. Talk to people as if they’re the most important people in the world. They are.
  11. Use clear, simple language.
  12. Accept and respond gracefully to criticism. Don’t try to sweep it under the rug.
  13. Make it easy and fun for people to share about your brand.
  14. Offer fresh or startling perspectives on talked-about themes.
  15. Always choose transparency over secrecy.
  16. Go with the flow. Don’t try to control the conversation.
  17. Know when to respond and when to get out of the way.
  18. Talk like a human being, not like a PR person.
  19. Empower your biggest fans to evangelize for you.
  20. Make sure people know you’re listening.
  21. Be generous. It’s good karma and good business.
Relationships / Influencer Marketing