First published more than 70 years ago, Dale Carnegie’s guide on people skills entitled “How to Win Friends and Influence People” contains wisdom that is mostly true to this very day, because human nature, for better or worse, does not change much over time.
And even in this brave new world of the Internet and social media, we can still look to age-old truths in deciphering a code to grow an audience (win friends) and successfully engage readers via our blogs (influence people).
Here are eight of these truths …
1. No click-bait headlines
Carnegie’s guide puts a lot of emphasis on recognizing the importance of others.
And it’s easiest to forget this in this online environment and treat our readers as simple statistics. Numbers, nothing more.
A sure way to get people to click on your post is to use a sensational headline that fails to deliver on its promise.
If you value your audience, you will not only deliver, but over-deliver.
Avoid the annoying practice of publishing misleading headlines, which we’ve all been fooled by — or it will appear that your guide is called “How to Lose Friends and Alienate People.”
2. Give proper credit
In his book, Mr. Carnegie tells us the following:
“Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”
It’s nice to give a shout-out to the blogger who inspired you to write a certain post, or tell a story. It’s not only a proper thing to do, but it’s also a way to earn their respect.
3. Make your readers smile
Another gem from the pen of Mr. Carnegie is:
“Your smile brightens the lives of all who see it.”
We live in some cynical times, true. But maybe this is why now, more than ever, you need to find a way to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and make your readers see it too.
Share content that is uplifting, motivational, offer hope to those who have lost it long ago, or simple make your readers smile.