Servant Leadership: What I Learned About Community From #SMMW13


Disclaimer: This article is not my usual “how to” or step by step guide to this, that and the other. Further, it contains material that may not be suitable for all audiences (I used the “J” word).


A growing theme in the social media sphere is that less is more.  Or as Michael Stelzner puts it, “Small is the new large”.  Fewer followers that are active participants are far more valuable that a massive following that remains silent.  I will expand on that concept to say that you don’t really need followers at all.  You need advocates, ambassadors… evangelists.

Evangelists are the ones who will go out and spread the word about your brand in a way that you cannot.  According to a new report by Forrester Research, 70% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family as compared to only 10% for advertising.  It only makes sense that you want to excite your community and motivate them to go out and spread your message.

When I think of someone who knew how to inspire, rally, motivate, I think of Jesus.

Whether you are like me and believe that Jesus is God, or you simply think he was a great teacher or perhaps you think he was complete nutcase who got what he deserved in the end, one thing we all can agree on is that he knew how to cultivate a strong and loyal following. He was influential in the truest sense of the word…and he didn’t need to flash his Klout score to prove it.

More importantly, he did it organically. Granted pay per click didn’t exactly exist 2000 years ago, but, again, this is Jesus. He could have appeared in the clouds, spoken in a really loud voice & boom! Instant followers.  But he didn’t. He chose to do the work and create relationships.

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