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The importance of being a first follower

This video shows that the “lone nut” who starts a trend is important, but if the trend is to get going it takes a few brave souls to join in. These first brave souls are known as first followers. They’re vital if a trend is to become important because they give it credibility and show “the masses” that it’s OK to join in.

If you were one of the first people to sign up to Twitter or use Pinterest to market your business, you can give yourself a pat on the back. You were a first follower. You helped to make them the business tools they are today. You were also one of the first to take advantage of what they could offer your business. But aside from spotting something that will help your business before anyone else catches on to it, where else can we apply the first follower principle in an online context? And how does it help?Let’s take one example. In an environment such as LinkedIn you can be one of the first to answer people’s questions in forums, fill out surveys or offer an opinion. This raises your profile by showing people you’re an industry commentator and a “go to” expert. It also shows the person you’re answering that you’re supportive and interested in what they have to say – and we all love to think that! And you’ll often find that other people who join in after you will often refer back to your comment, raising your profile still further and giving you more credibility.

We might not all be switched on enough to spot the new Twitter or Pinterest. But we can all show our support for smaller things in smaller ways. And doing that can be just as important and give your business results that are just as important.