I believe in people over process, which means I take a personal approach in my work.

And in the age of scaling and automation, my style makes me a bit of a unicorn.

Look no further than my private Facebook group for proof.

My group, dedicated to online community managers, hit the 300-member mark early this year.

(cue the confetti)

celebrate group engagement with confetti

It was the perfect occasion to check in with everyone — so I did…

…By posting messages and tagging members.

Since Facebook limits posts to 50 tags each, that meant several posts over the course of a few days.

Looking back, it was A LOT.

There is no easy way to tag that many users, but the results were worth it.

Members who haven’t posted in ages, and some who had never posted at all, responded and shared updates with everyone.

One member just finished chemo and is getting ready to start radiation. Several members are finishing up book proposals and manuscripts; a couple are launching books in the next month or two. We’ve heard stories of starting groups, starting memberships and finally committing to taking social media seriously.

Personal updates, professional updates, high points, low points and midpoints — all of them were truly a joy to read. It connected all of us in a way that I don’t think any other tactic could have.

It’s an impulsive decision I’m glad I made, but it’s not one I’ll likely be able to make again.

This kind of attention can’t be sustained as the group grows. In fact, 300 is probably the cap. Sure…I could get assistance in creating the posts — or do what other group managers do and write one post with 50 tags and then add comments with 50 tags each until the whole group is covered. But that feels contrary to my hyper-personal style.

So, this is a stunt that’s most likely one-and-done. But I have no regrets. I have loved reading and re-reading every comment and response.

If you manage a group with fewer members, it’s a stunt to consider.

And though you can’t get around all the typing required to insert those tags, I do have a hack to make it a little easier.

Just because you’re one of my VIPs, I have a quick video to show you how it’s done.

If you decide to follow in my footsteps and try this type of activity in your group, let me know. I’d love to hear the response you get and how you felt about the experience for yourself.

Tonya Kubo believes in people over process and uses a personalized approach to help writers leverage the power of social media to launch books, online communities, membership programs and brands. She is the founder of the Clutter Free Academy Facebook groupSecret to Thriving Online Communities Facebook group and Clutter Free for Life membership program. She is a frequent guest on the Clutter Free Academy and Communicator Academy podcasts, has been featured on the Biz Mavens podcast, and has taught at Leverage: The Speaker Conference.

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