Blog to Win Friends and Influence People

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This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Dale Carnegie classic, How to Win Friends and Influence People. In the book, Carnegie outlines a timeless approach to building people skills. It’s a throwback to an era when civility ruled.

Over the weekend someone took a cheap shot at me, scored a lot of links and generated a lot of traffic to her blog on her very first post. Robert French summarizes the whole event here. The blog, which rhymes with Smurfette, is clearly going to dish out salty gossip and innuendo about the PR business, starting with me. The entire episode, which honestly I didn’t pay a lot of attention to, inspired me to revisit Carnegie’s classic. Carnegie’s tenets provide a solid reminder or two about how to take the high road in the blogosphere, which at time is a rough and tumble environment in a world filled with vile and meanness.

What follows is a summary of his ideas. My comments are in italics. Model these and you will go far in the blog world. I haven’t always followed this road, but it’s always been my intent to do so. Wouldn’t it be awesome if we all did?

Fundamental Techniques for Handling People:

* Don’t criticize, condemn or complain. Advance or build on the dialogue, even if you disagree

* Give people a feeling of importance; praise the good parts of them. Link to the posts you disagree with, but point out the parts you agree with too.

* Get the other person to want to do what you want them to by arousing their desires. Put another way, make dreams come true.

Six Ways to Make People Like You:

* Be genuinely interested in other people. Read lots of blogs for different perspectives.

* Smile. Put your picture on your blog.

* Remember and use people’s names. Remember where you read things and credit the bloggers who wrote them.

* Encourage others to talk about themselves and listen to them. In other words, welcome comments.

* Discuss what the other person is interested in. Add value to your readers.

* Make the other person feel important. Take all your feedback seriously and adapt if needed.

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Steve Rubel is a PR strategist with nearly 16 years of public relations, marketing, journalism and communications experience. He currently serves as a Senior Vice President with Edelman, the largest independent global PR firm.

He authors the Micro Persuasion weblog, which tracks how blogs and participatory journalism are changing the public relations practice.

Blog to Win Friends and Influence People
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