Getting the Most out of WIC- Part 1: The WIC Community List

Our WIC community now numbers over 400 consultants, stretching beyond the Bay Area to locations all around the US.

Some of our members and affiliates are very effective at leveraging the power of WIC to build and grow their businesses. I’d like to share a few observations regarding those that are most successful.

Many people come to WIC because of the incredible power of the WIC community list. At least several times a day someone posts a question to one of our lists and receives numerous replies with suggestions and ideas in response.

How can you best use the WIC lists?

  • Be aware of the rules and regulations regarding the lists. These are posted on our website and a reminder email is sent to community members each month. To summarize, no back-and-forth discussions, no self-promotion, no reply-to-all, no off-topic discussions (except on the off topic list, of course), and above all no discussion of pricing or rates.
  • Be aware that we police all of our lists all of the time. Any time one of our rules is violated, a private email is sent to the poster. We know people are busy and everyone makes mistakes, however we also know that all the people reading the list expect that we run a tight ship. We’ll warn you once, reprimand you the next time, then remove you from the list for a third violation. Caveat posters.
  • Keep your question simple and succinct. The shorter your email the more likely it will be read and responded to.
  • If you’re the questioner, you’re expected to summarize and post the responses received in a timely fashion. Include the names of the people who made the referrals, *unless* they’ve specifically asked you not to do so.
  • If you’re responding to a post, you’re expected to only refer people or firms you would feel comfortable using yourself in a similiar situation.
  • Those who respond to an inquiry are expected to follow WIC’s rules about responding to the poster with input rather than forward the post to other lists.
  • When making a referral, include either email or phone contact information, or both if possible.
  • If you are referring a friend or colleague, please make sure they are aware of our list policies and respect them as well.
  • Be aware that the number of responses to a posting can be quite lengthy and it may not be possible for the poster to respond to all of them. Don’t take this personally!
  • Read the post carefully to see what is actually being asked for. At times the poster will tell you they are posting on behalf of a colleague which means they likely don’t have additional details about the situation. They certainly won’t appreciate being contacted multiple times by individuals trying to sell their services to the poster, or calling to find out when they should expect to hear back if they will be hired for this opportunity. (Both these situations actually happened to me recently.)

Following these suggestions will make the list posting experience more positive for everyone involved.

Look for other tips on how to get the most out of WIC in future posts.

Linda

About Linda Popky

Linda J. Popky, a past president of WIC and the founder and president of Silicon Valley-based Leverage2Market Associates, helps organizations be heard above the noise. She is the author of the recently released book Marketing Above the Noise: Achieve Strategic Advantage with Marketing That Matters. Connect with her on Twitter at @popky

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