Health Activist Master Class: The 4 Laws Of Expanding Reach

At the WEGO Health Activist Meetup on April 15, a gang of varied and amazing Health Activists joined me as we grabbed a beverage and a flip chart to lay out our strategies for growing your audience.

This was no ordinary group, including (among others) eating disorder and substance abuse survivor and brilliant VoiceInRecovery; alchemist / industry-meets-real-people diplomat / social media power user extraordinaire Shwen; and blogger/community manager/energetic EMT (!) CarissaO. In fact, this group was too cranked up to stop after reaching the meet-up’s goal of “give us your Top 3 tips” – instead, we powered on to create 4 Laws for every Health Activist.

The 4 Laws Of Expanding Reach

  • Know Your Audience
  • Know Your Mission
  • Spend Time Outside
  • Connect Your Connections

Know Your Audience may sound like marketing 101, but if you haven’t done a real landscape survey of your area – and found the audience you want to attract – then you may be reaching your Mom and 10 high school classmates. Ask yourself:

Where is my audience online (besides your community)?

Who are the other Health Activists reaching my audience? (If you don’t know them, start collaborating)

How is my audience different? (If your target is “Moms!,” time to get a lot more specific)

Know Your Mission is another way to ask “what’s your unique voice?” It’s critical that you differentiate yourself as a valuable addition to the Health Activist world, and constantly reinforce your brand. Ask yourself:

Is my mission specific and different? (Try filling in these blanks: “My mission is to help (audience) who need (a specific type of help/support/information) with (your ways of communicating/helping); unlike (similar sites or competition), I (your differentiation and voice).

Be true to your voice – then use themes to unite other perspectives (if you’re an expert in pharmaceutical treatments, invite an acupuncturist to address a problem or issue with you)

Tell a personal story – not necessarily your own – to remind your audience who you are

Spend Time Outside is a law that most Health Activists understand innately, but the best are experts. In short, it means you will get back what you give the online community – our group recommends you contribute at least 3 times more content on others’ sites than in your own work. You’ll gain audience and support your fellow Health Activists when you:

Support others (reply, comment, retweet, review, quote, list, carnival…)

Get off your own blog or group to engage in interviews

Organize offline meet-ups

Connect Your Connections is a simple concept too often overlooked – a reminder to multiply your postings, and your audiences, by linking together your social graph.

Bare minimum: Facebook + Twitter + blog/group should all update each other, and remind your audiences to connect to all 3

BUT WEGO Health Activists warn that “your Facebook should update your Twitter feed, not vice versa – nothing scares away your Facebooks fans faster than a hash of hashtags”

Twitter can be your blog’s best source of new traffic – tweet, retweet, even retweet yourself, and DM other Health Activists

Don’t forget Slideshare, LinkedIn, and other sites you found in your audience landscape

This group had MUCH more to say of course, but at WEGO Health we’d like to hear about your Laws Of Expanding Reach. What did our group miss? Do you have examples of using The Laws we can share with other

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