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Building Relationships for Success with Michael Stelzner of Social Media Examiner

On this episode of Rhodes to Success I interview Michael Stelzner, founder and CEO of a multi-million dollar social media blog called Social Media Examiner. Michael also hosts one of iTunes most popular business podcasts and was once known as the King of White Papers. Listen to this episode to learn how Michael propelled his way to success using the power of relationship building!


Main Questions Asked

–       Why is it so important early on to build relationships?

–       How did building relationships help you grow Social Media Examiner so fast?

–       What is your take on why it is important to leverage multiple content platforms?

–       Do you think that using your personal brand hurts or helps people when trying to get noticed?

–       How frequently should you post on Facebook and Twitter and what is the etiquette?


Key Lessons Learned 

Relationship Building

–       People like to work with people they know, like, and trust

–       Build relationships with the right people way in advance

–       We all have something of value to other people. If we can figure out what they need and help with that, that can become a profitable relationship for both parties

–       Just asking someone for an interview (or favor) doesn’t always work. Sometimes you need to offer value first without asking for anything in return.


Content Marketing

–       Be realistic about the time you have as a business owner and what you will spend that time doing

–       In the beginning choosing one platform such as podcast, video or written is okay but in the long run you should diversify

–       Remember that there are different kinds of people that are interested in consuming different types of content

–       On average people spend 1-3 minutes reading a blog post and generally only skim the content (more time is spent consuming other formats)

–       As your business gains momentum it is worthwhile experimenting with more than one form of content marketing



–       There is a difference in being the spokesperson for the brand and the brand itself  (personal branding vs spokesperson for the brand)

–       Not everybody might like ‘you’ as the person if you are the brand which means you may lose business

–       If you are not the ‘brand’ itself then people have the opportunity to rally around the business identity and not you

–       When it comes to selling, it is easier to sell a non-personal brand

–       As a personal brand the challenge is when you get to the point where everybody wants a piece of you and you can’t grow your business


Social Media Posting Guidelines

–       As an example; Social Media Examiner posts 5-7 times a day on Facebook, 20-30 times on Twitter and publishes 10 articles a week (Keep in mind that SME is a publisher)

–       Before posting or setting a schedule, ask yourself: What am I trying to accomplish?

–       Posting content is about what your audience finds interesting and what you find acceptable

–       Post interesting content that people find of value 2-3 times a day (non promotional.) If that works increase the frequency and monitor for negative consequences then adjust

–       Lists come in handy as a way to privatize your content into sub groups


Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe to the show in iTunes or Stitcher Radio!


Links to Resources Mentioned

Social Media Marketing (Podcast)

Social Media Examiner

Interview Connections

Solopreneur Hour with Michael O’Neil

Nuclear Chowder Marketing Podcast 

Writing White Papers (Book)

Gary Vaynerchuk

She Podcasts


Click to Tweet

Social Media Examiner @SMExaminer CEO & founder @Mike_Stelzner speaks w/ @jessrhodesess on

Just asking someone for an interview doesn’t work; Offer value first @mike_stelzner on @jessrhodesess

The music in today’s episode was written by The Danger Os and produced by Nick Palmer. Check them out at

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