What do you do next?
What happens to those downloaded files? Do you read them? Do you use them? Do you interact with the authors in a discussion?
Or do you choose to do…. Nothing.
OK, so you are shy. The authors of these downloads intimidate you. You don’t want to put yourself out there online or via email exchange. Maybe you are afraid someone is going to try to sell you something.
You are busy, right? So you file the download away to read “later.”
Are you a social business download hoarder?
You hoard the information, but are reluctant to participate.
This past weekend I went through my own stash of study guides, white papers, and articles. I did a major purge.
Admittedly, there was a lot of stuff I downloaded that’s outdated. Some of the materials had great titles but weren’t appropriate to my target marketplace.
Other downloads, however, have become my go-to references for my consulting business. I grew as a Businessperson of Worth because of what I learned from these thoughtful, well-written materials.
You see, there’s something truly “special” associated with my Go-To Download Folder.
I take the initiative. I introduce myself to the authors. When they hit a Home Run with a particularly appropriate piece of content, I let them know about its value to me.
I just don’t feel right about downloading and hoarding. My Go-To Downloads gain greater utility and significance because I elected to engage with the author.
I made a concerted effort to avoid social business download hoarding. I’ve nurtured some amazing relationships along the way.
How many of you have downloaded an author’s content in the last week? Did you acknowledge and thank the author? You know that you received a thank-you email after you opted-in.
Some authors not only thank you, they ask you questions in an attempt to engage you in dialogue. Do you run the other way or move forward in conversation?
As a creator and curator of social business content on my own blog and social media feeds, I know how much time and effort are spent creating these pieces. I’m amazed at how prolific my colleagues are, in generating consistently high-quality content via the blog posts I share with you.
Sure you’re jaded downloading anything. I am too.
You’re afraid your contact information becomes part of a marketing automation system. You become an unqualified “qualified” lead and get “that” phone call the same day. Ugh. I’ve had the same thing happen downloading stuff from certain social business sites.
There’s a difference, though.
The initial goal of top individual bloggers is to start a dialogue, not to rush to sell you something.
When I contact you and ask you question, I want to determine your context. What motivated you to download? What part of the content is most valuable?
That’s it. That’s the start of the conversation.
It’s your choice. Will you remain a social business download hoarder? Or will you elect to up your personal skill set by engaging those sales, business and marketing experts who so willingly, and consistently, put it all out there online for you time and time again.
What’s your choice? Social business download hoarder or social business participant?
Babette Ten Haken, Founder & President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers®, LLC is a catalyst for small to midsized businesses transitioning forward, startups in search of growth strategies and professionals who want to develop cross-functional, collaborative core competencies for their next career move. This post is amended and republished based on the original on LinkedIn, with this author’s permission.