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“What do we say, Elliot?”
For the past 5 years, I have been hounding my daughter to say thank you. We sing songs about it, she learned to sign it…I even have a special “we’re in public” head tilt coupled with raised eyebrows look, so she knows I mean ‘thank you’ business.
It’s just good manners. But it has no place in your video.
Now, I know this might get you a little heated and it probably goes against very morsel of your very polite body…but I want you to STOP thanking your virtual audience when you’re on video. Don’t worry, I’ll give you an alternative in a bit.
Well, I’m glad you asked. The biggest reason has to do with your value.
Let’s assume you’ve just delivered a fabulous Facebook Live on how your audience can save a ton of money with three easy to implement strategies. You just saved them money! Why would you thank them for listening to you? Why would you thank them for hanging on your every word? Why would you thank them for not clicking away? You wouldn’t.
When you go see your Doctor, do they thank you for coming to see them? No, you thank them for their time and their expertise.
You are the Doctor. You are the expert. How you establish your authority (or don’t) sets the expectation and tone for your online relationship.
In 2010 there was a great debate among the Toastmaster community about whether or not to thank your audience at the end of a speech. It got ugly. Small, crustless cucumber sandwiches were thrown and some people even got their feelings and egos hurt (I made this up -there was no great debate or food fight but it was discussed on LinkedIn). The final word…saying thank you at the end of a speech diminishes the impact of your ending. And I agree.
Your audience remembers your last sentence best. So, I know you can come up with something more memorable and impactful than “thank you”. I like to end by giving my audience a task and wishing them luck or sending them somewhere where they can get even more of my valuable advice.
I want you to be memorable. So don’t fall back on a trite and overused platitude. Push yourself to make the start and ends of your video really strong.
Now, I’m not telling you to go out and make videos where you are a raving, rude egomaniac. There are ways of showing gratitude for your audience’s attention. Here’s an alternative to saying ‘thank you’. Acknowledge your audience for taking time out of their day to better themselves. By acknowledging them, you are giving them a virtual pat on the back for taking the time to learn from you. It’s polite and doesn’t undermine your authority or value.
O.K., I know this blog may stir a few pots – so go ahead, leave me a comment and let me know which side of the ‘thank you’ fence you’re standing on.
P.S. Your mom called. She said it was o.k. not to say thank you in your videos…as long as you don’t swear or say anything negative about her.