In my last email from the Series called: Digital Marketing Superstars, I wrote about Udemy’s smart content strategy.
After telling our subscribers a short story about the sneaky way Udemy handles content creation, I also mentioned Medium.com and Thunderclap. I wanted to do a short and clever curation to help you (if you’re one of our subscribers) find out great new tools and platforms for amplifying your social reach.
[UPDATE 19th October 2018] Thunderclap Alternative:
Important Announcement: Facebook changed many policies due to their Cambridge Analytica Scandal, killing off Thunderclap as a platform, as well as all the other Thunderclap alternatives.
If you’re like me than you probably spent a lot of time on the web searching for solutions and alternatives. There are none. I made this update, so you could end your search.
Everyone who did similar platforms decided to instantly quit after Facebook removed Facebook PROFILES access in the API.
I will let the old article live on, as this was a really important marketing story and marketing lesson. And who knows? Maybe at one point, the Thunderclap alternatives and crowd speaking platforms will be reborn.
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By the way, if you ever want to gain popularity by using digital media tools, you should use Starbox to help people see who you are.
Seeing how ThunderClap can help you get hundreds of thousands of people to read your next best social media post, I decided to do a lot of research and come up with a plan and valuable data that will help YOU to reach amazing results with this new trendy (and efficient way) of getting people to your next best social media post.
An Audience of 7 Million People Who’ll Read Your Best Social Media Post
Tim Ferris, the author of the 4-Hour Workweek, used Thunderclap to reach an audience of 7 Million People. In this post, I’m showing you how to do the exact same thing.
Thunderclap itself didn’t give Tim Ferris an audience, but it enabled him to gather that audience. You know that crowdfunding (kickstarter, indiegogo) is the sort of thing where someone says they want to build something, and then people come along and donate $5 to $500 each to help support the project.
Thunderclap does a similar thing, but instead of helping you gather money, it helps you gather a social media audience.
They call it CrowdSpeaking.
CrowdSpeaking in Action – How I First Saw the Potential in This Idea
I’ve seen this in action myself when we were the Content Marketing team of Techsylvania (a tech conference in Transylvania) and they asked us to help spread their ThunderClap reach.How a #startup conference got 226,982 people to learn when it was about to go down. Click To Tweet
So this was my contribution to it all:
Just bragging a bit here. And only because Andy Piper is a Head of Engineering at Twitter and I’ve managed to get more twitter audience than him 😛
Alright, serious stuff:
After being exposed to all of this and after seeing how successful their campaign was, I decided to study the whole thing.
This was techsylvania’s first campaign of this sort. And they were successful. Now: if you could get 225,000 people to see your message on Twitter wouldn’t you be happy?
I think you would be, and that’s why I insisted on showing you all this.
Let’s be honest: most of the messages that you and I publish on Twitter are seen by a MUCH SMALLER audience.
The Hunt For Knowledge Began
This year on Christmas we will launch an HTML 5 game for Content Marketing people and Startups. It’s mainly for those who don’t really wanna work on Christmas, but they also can’t keep away from content marketing and their own business.
That’s why I started looking into how we’ll be able to spread the word about our game and make sure that when the day comes we will have people playing the game.
I was a bit shocked when I found out that ThunderClap was a paid service, but luckily they’ve coined the term “crowdspeaking” so I’ve googled it and found out about a free service that does the same thing.
I did some due diligence on the alternative service that I’ve found and it’s all very legit. There is one downside that I will get to in a moment, but nothing too serious.
The case studies on ThunderClap’s website are really cool and they can provide you with a lot of insight on how a lot of people from a lot of industries used this idea of crowdfunding a social media audience to gain insane social media reach.
Tim Ferris rocked this all in the following way and I think it’s impressive to see this:
Tim created a Thunderclap campaign to give his fans and fellow influencers a quick, easy way to announce the series on launch day. He spread the word about the campaign in a strategic way, reaching out to his email list of over 1 million people, promoting the campaign on Twitter and Facebook, and mentioning it on his extremely popular blog.
On launch day, over 3,300 of Tim’s biggest supporters unleashed the series to the world, reaching 7 million people. The campaign drove people to a page where they could watch the series and check out exclusive behind-the-scenes content from Tim.
During the week of the launch, The Tim Ferriss Experiment was the number one most-downloaded TV season on iTunes, beating popular shows such as Game of Thrones, Downton Abbey, Mad Men, and all the rest.
Yes, you will argue now that he had an email list, but just think about this:
If he hadn’t created this crowdspeaking campaign, he would have NEVER gotten those results. Never. Even though he was such a big name.
As marketers, I think that it is our duty to experiment the things that can really bring impact and growth. And my job is to give you amazing tools to try out.
It’s the reason why I started GetGrowth.TV after all.
How Does It Work ?
On KickStarter.com where you use the platform to gather money for your project, you pay 5% for all the money earned with the project.
If you meet the goal of raising $ 100,000 USD, they will get 5% out of that. That means : $5,000.
Because of this, when I first looked at the crowdspeaking platforms I thought that you had to gather the Audience Reach. For example: 7 Million people who see your message on social media (just like in Tim’s case).
But NO. Your goal for the project is actually the NUMBER of supporters that you gather for your campaign.
So when you set up the campaign on any of the crowdspeaking platforms (platforms just like ThunderClap) you will mention a goal of supporters, NOT of total social media reach, even though social media reach is what you’re actually going after.
That’s a very important difference between these two kinds of platforms.
And it’s best you keep it in mind, because you can only set up a campaign in ThunderClap for at LEAST 100 supporters.
What will happen?
The campaign goes out. You tell people about it.
Some of them join as supporters and decide to share your message once you will Successfully reach your GOAL.
BUT: until you get 100 people to support your campaign not even one single social media message will be posted. So you really need to make sure that you can get 100 people to help you out with social media sharing, otherwise the effort will be in vain.
I did a lot of digging before writing this post and I decided I should tell you the things to look out for, since any other information about these kinds of campaigns is easily accessible. I wanted to give you the really juicy and important part in this article.
Don’t Worry About the 100 Goal. There’s a platform that helps you do all of this for free and doesn’t have a high supporter goal.
There is a really cool platform like Thunderclap, that I’ve already mentioned earlier in the article.
It’s called HeadTalker and it helps you do something exactly like a ThunderClap campaign. With all the customization you will want for your campaign. For Free.
I thought it was a bit odd at first, especially because they’ve done their SEO right and if you search for ” crowd speaking ” you will get a lot of sites that are actually advertising it in a clever way.
Kind of like: CrowdSpeaking.com
I’ve checked them out and they are legit. The whole thing is alright and it works. I’ve tracked down a game developer that used it to promote the launch of his own game. He had great results with it.
The amount of customization you can make for your campaign on HeadTalker is awesome!
On ThunderClap it would cost you a lot of money.
You can see this HeadTalker campaign and you will see that they’ve completely made the page look like it was their own: custom graphics, videos, and awesome campaign page, etc.
Why does it work?
It simply works because it makes the people who already follow you or who are already interested in your activity to feel really good.
They feel really good for lending a helping hand. It doesn’t really cost them anything, and they get to feel like they’re part of something bigger. They are contributing to something along with other people.
And that is a good feeling.
That’s the reason why you’ll get a lot more success by going after such a campaign. If you have a goal of getting 20 people, you’ll certainly find 20 people who Share your message. Because they feel that they’re really doing something.
Otherwise, if you’d write emails to 20 people asking them to share, you wouldn’t really get the same results, plus the TIMING would be completely off, and that’s not really a campaign, now is it?
Plus, on Twitter timing is very important, and it helps you get your hashtag influence up. Gaining hashtag influence is a reward itself.
If you’ll ask me to share your message, I wouldn’t really be engaged with that. Maybe I’d help, maybe not. (most probably not). But if you send me such a campaign I’ll feel that it’s something you really need help with and it’s something a bit more serious. I also feel that helping you with a campaign is of more impact, that just randomly tweeting something because you had some idea this morning.
Think about it.
I really like writing about this and I hope that this is a great idea that you will try out!
If you’ll run such a campaign and you feel I can contribute, don’t hesitate to let me know and I’ll help you out.
@florin_muresan on twitter. I <3 twitter and it’s easy for you to get in touch with me there.
Your next best social media post could have a lot more reach than usual!
Just one more thing before I finish writing this piece:
I thought this is a nice “trend validator” 😛 There is already a theme that will let YOU create your own platform similar to HeadTalker and ThunderClap.
Let me know what you think about CrowdSpeaking in the comments below:
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