Build Relationships with Your Digital Tribe

A trend I have been happily reading about is the growing expectation of relationship online. People are savvy enough about social media that it is not enough for you to push content at them. They expect you to interact, engage, and be about them as much as you are about you.

Yup, relationship building. This is the approach I have been taking for years online. It is the approach that always wins.

Your online strategy needs to be far less about follower count and much more about how you interact and engage with your online tribe. Social media must be about building relationships. A healthy relationship means give and take. It means that both parties have equal footing.

Here are five ways you can show appreciation, connection and concern online. Doing these things will help you build a tribe that matters.

Share their content.

Take time to see what your active followers are posting on their channels. Share the things that represent a good intersection of their interests and yours. In a relationship, both parties should have the opportunity to initiate discussion.

Say thanks.

Appreciate your network by taking time to say thanks. Thanking your network for input or simply for being connected is easy to do and can help strengthen connection.

Acknowledge that your followers have lots of choices and limited time. Thank them for making you part of their online engagement.

Make comments into content.

Getting comments and feedback? Use them on your social channels as content! Make a post about a review or comment. Create a meme that uses a follower’s quote.

Sharing feedback is a great way to showcase social proof. This also highlights that you do read and care about comments and other input from followers.

Let followers set the agenda.

Get your followers by giving them a vote in what you do. Be sure to ask people what they want from you online. Point out what you do to deliver.

This also helps with specific business needs. Considering a new logo or tag line? Get input from your tribe. Need to name something? Give them options to choose.

Offer exclusives.

One of the best parts of a relationship is knowing more than people that don’t take time to be connected. Share thoughts and inside information with your followers that add benefits to their relationship with you.

Tell them about your plans. Share the back story on a product or service. Share personal stories about the people behind the brand.

None of these relationship-building tactics needs to be difficult. Develop relationships in a way that is natural for you and your brand. Those connections will really help you tap into the value of social media in creating connections for your brand, now and in the future.

Is Your Website Footer Effective?

Footers can be found at the bottom of almost every web page. Their presence is critical and highly underrated, according to new research from
Nielsen Norman Group.

User the Footer Element Wisely

Footers serve as an important reference point for people as they complete a variety of tasks on websites. While footers get less attention than the top of the page, they still receive a fair amount of use.

NNG found two common uses:

  1. Users scan or read the page and either don’t find what they want, or need more information.
  2. Users scroll to the footer to find information they expect to appear there, such as contact information, details about the company, and social media posts or links.

Best Footer Elements

The best footer elements for your site depend on your goals. NNG lists these as the most common footer components and recommended situations in which to use them:

  • Utility links, such as contact information, customer service, privacy policy and terms of use
  • Repeat of main navigation
  • Links to items not in the main navigation but of high interest to certain audiences, like apply for a job or investor information
  • Site map showing a combination of the global navigation and other important pages not present in the global navigation
  • Testimonials or awards
  • List of other brands within the organization
  • Customer engagement (email newsletters and social media)

Footer Pitfalls to Avoid

  • Too much content: A footer should be devoted to only important information that should be discoverable.
  • Unclear link names: Adhere to conventional, clear terms.
  • Tiny text: Sometimes companies opt to use a tiny font size for footer links but people use it and rely upon it, so make it legible.

What Do People Do Online?

Guest post by Johnathan Blakely,

Since the internet became mainstream in the 1990s, it has rapidly become an integral part of our lives. Most of us can’t go more than an hour without checking our phones, and “Google It!” has become a part of our daily language.

However, a fair question to ask is: what do people actually do online?

The internet is such a vast ocean of information that one can do pretty much anything. But despite having so much at our fingertips, most of us use the internet for the same core activities.

Broadband Search has compiled stats about internet use in 2019, and these numbers can help us wrap our head around not only how much we use the internet, but also why we spend so much time on the web.

You can read the full report here, but to save you some time, here are some of the highlights.


Due to the ubiquity of the phrase “Google it,” it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that people use the internet mainly to search for information. In fact, Google is the number one most-visited site in the world, according to the Alexa rankings.

Pinning down exactly what people search for is difficult, but here’s a list of the most common search terms people use along with the search volumes for each:

  • weather (24.4 million)
  • maps (20.4 million)
  • translate (18.3 million)
  • calculator (16.2 million)
  • YouTube to MP3 (13.7 million)

These terms are just the most popular. Overall, Google processes more than 3.5 billion searches every single day, which is equivalent to more than 1.2 trillion searches per year.


The next most common thing people do on the internet is watch videos. YouTube is obviously a huge part of this. It’s ranked number two on the Alexa ranking, behind Google and in front of Facebook. YouTube has more than 1 billion unique monthly visitors.

But YouTube isn’t the only place people go for video content. Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime all receive tons of traffic. 45 percent of people globally watch at least one hour of online video content per day.

Social Media

Some may be surprised to see this is not the number one thing people do online. However, that it’s not in the top spot is not an indicator that social media is not popular. Overall, there are more than 3 billion social media users around the world.

With more than 2 billion active users, Facebook is the most popular platform. Next is Facebook Messenger and Instagram (both owned by Facebook), and then Twitter, LinkedIn, and SnapChat.

In total, Facebook is the third most visited site in the world behind Google and YouTube.


After searching, watching videos, and perusing social media, shopping is the most common online activity.

The world of e-commerce has seen significant growth over the years as more and more people get used to the comfort and convenience of shopping online.

To give you an idea, consider that global e-commerce sales last year were more than 650 billion. And things are not expected to slow down. Soon, e-commerce could be the leader in the retail space.


Most of use the internet to search for information, watch videos, check up on friends and family, and shop. However, as the web continues to advance and offer more features, perhaps we’ll find new ways to use this awesome tool in the future.