Thanksgiving is here, another American holiday full of food, beer, and sports games.
(We watch the Lions every year here in Detroit. No matter how bad it hurts to watch.)
But I’m always grateful to have another day to spend with family and friends. Even if this day has a slightly different name than the rest.
Exercising gratitude brings happiness.
It’s a way of remembering and honoring all of those in and around your life. Taking the time to thank others helps you remember to give back the positivity and support you receive.
For businesses and bloggers this means giving thanks to your audience, too.
Giving Thanks to Your Audience Through Social Media
All businesses, like people, should express gratitude to those they are serving. What would you be without your audience? Without your clients?
Your work is your way of serving the world.
When you serve only for yourself or for personal gain, you not only miss out on a more fulfilling life, you often lack the ability to perceive the larger audience around you. You lack the empathy and understanding of their needs and wants, and how you can serve them best.
We are all connected in this larger audience, and it’s important to recognize this by expressing appreciation. Saying “thank you” can show gratitude to your audience online. The following are additional ways to appreciate your audience through social media.
1. Saying Thanks Together + Including Audience Responses
This is a way to unite through social media with the purpose of remembering all that makes us human: gratitude, love, family, friends, life. Best-selling author Cheryl Strayed also runs the advice column Dear Sugar on The Rumpus. For Thanksgiving last year, she took the time to invite all of her readers to submit what they were thankful for. In return, she published these wonderful audience replies. What a great way to interact with your audience online, and celebrate all that we overcome together. Read them. You will cry, smile, laugh, and feel extreme gratitude for your life.
2. Dedicating Media + Including the Whole Team
A blog post, a video, a few beautiful graphics. Tailoring a special message thanking your audience can help show your gratitude. Copyblogger shared their Thanksgiving 2012 list, a post dedicated to thanking everyone that works on the site as well as their audience. What other forms of media can you produce? How can you say it best? Including the whole team shows appreciation for everyone involved on both ends.
3. Giving it Away Online + What Your Audience Wants & Needs
The best already give thanks all the time. Business savvy bloggers like Chris Brogan and Brian Clark already give their audience what they want and need the most: the information and words they crave. They give it away often for free as a way to say thank you, to show appreciation for their audience, to honor the relationships they care about most. It serves both parties, creating a mutually beneficial relationship online. What can you give away for free that helps your audience? That shows your genuine gratitude?
The internet is the perfect medium for giving back to your audience online. Think outside of sales. Show you’re giving back. Spread the love.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
I will be taking care of my sick puppy, watching the Detroit Thanksgiving Day parade, and checking out other fun events around my side of town. But I’ll remember the importance of expressing gratitude to everyone in both my professional and personal lives.
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” –Melodie Beattie