(This post was originally published on November 30, 2013 but has been updated to be even more fantastic!)

How often do you take the time to thank the people that you engage online and who support and promote your business by sharing your posts? A thank you is a great way to acknowledge them and their loyalty—and keep them engaged so they continue sharing your posts.

Here are three easy and creative ways to thank your social media followers:

1. Personalize, don’t generalize your social media thank you messages

You don’t need to write long thank-you messages for a follower to be appreciated, but you should personalize messages to make them feel sincere. You can send direct messages or give a public shout-out to recognize and thank your fan, but make sure you include the fan’s name (or Twitter handle) and be clear about why you’re thanking them or why you think they’re so great.

Posting a public thank-you note has an added benefit. Your other followers will see you as someone who cares about their fans, and that’s a great impression to make.

Let’s try a few out right now, shall we?

2. Recognize instagram, facebook, linkeden and twitter fans on a regular basis

People join social networks to be social, meaning they like to connect and be connected. Recognizing a specific fan each week is a great way to reward these social people and give them an opportunity to connect with other like-minded people.

For any social channel you use, you can try the “fan of the week” approach. Once a week, choose a fan and post a quick note about why you appreciate them or why you find them so interesting.

Let’s give it a whirl!

  • Since 1994, LifeLearn has been helping practices and animal health companies grow and succeed. We wouldn’t have come as far as we have without the support of our clients—like Steeples Veterinary Clinic in British Columbia, who use WebDVM to maximize their online presence. As a token of our appreciation, we’re treating the entire Steeples team to a free pizza lunch!
  • We’re so happy to hear that Tennessee Valley Animal Clinic has found a home for Beano, a kitten found in the middle of HWY 43 in Russellville, AL. Your commitment to animal welfare is inspiring!
  • Pet food quality and safety is vital to healthy pets, and we celebrate the Animal Surgery and Care Center for always keeping pet owners up to date with the latest news about pet food recalls.

All three examples offer specifics about why each fan was chosen. Steeples Veterinary Clinic was celebrated for using a custom-built LifeLearn WebDVM website and joining LifeLearn in its mission to advance animal health and education worldwide. Tennessee Valley Animal Clinic was celebrated for finding a home for a specific kitten (Beano), and the Animal Surgery and Care Center was celebrated for keeping pet owners in the loop about pet food recalls. The more specific you can be in your thank-you posts, the more you prove to your followers that you’re paying attention and value what they do, which keeps followers engaged with your page and posts.

If you’re on Twitter, you can also try the #FF (Friday Follow) approach to identify a favorite follower, along with a quick note about who they are and why people should follow them. Your fan will appreciate it because their name gets circulated, and in many cases, they’ll thank you back, which circulates your name as well. Here’s an example:

  • #FF @judygi – she’s an active follower who posts up-to-date tips for #veterinary practices.

3. If it’s a big deal, make it a big deal

Perhaps you have a follower who went out of their way to do something extra special. Why not take a moment to write a blog about that experience? Include their photo (with permission) and a link back to their social profile(s). Then share your blog across your social channels. The benefit for you is that your blog gets more coverage as their followers share it.

These are just a few examples to help inspire you to thank your followers. A little gratitude goes a long way in building relationships and engagement with your online fans.

Thanks for reading, and if you haven’t connected with us on social yet, check us out on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

You can also get to know us on YouTube.


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