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I asked Morrison to describe to me how she’s been able to get so many people to help her along the way. Her number-one rule, she said, is to never ask anything of anyone without first giving or knowing that she will give something in return. Or in her words — is able to practice “genuine relationship marketing.” These are her other best tips.

1. Put the social back in social media.
Morrison stands out from the crowd by regularly leaving “inspirational, motivational, positive comments” on the page of people whose attention she wants to get. She respects that good relationships develop slowly. She never changes her profile picture, which is a close-up of her face. “I want them to remember me, after all,” she said. Eventually, the celebrity and his or her followers begin liking her comments in return. Her policy is to never post photos or comments that she’d “be ashamed to wear on a t-shirt.” People learn to value your character that way, she said.

2. Consider reaching out to a local politician for help.

In the fall of 2014, Morrison wanted to get in touch with Willie Nelson. She remembered Nelson coming to her hometown in Ohio once to support Dennis Kucinich. She asked Kucinich if he would forward a Pro-Pic to Nelson in an email. A few hours later, Kucinich called her to express his support. A few hours after that, Nelson called her personally. “Politicians, like entrepreneurs, are always looking for supporters,” Morrison explained. The fact that Rick had terminal cancer was obviously compelling. But it was only through her pursuit of smaller connections that she was able to reach Nelson.

3. Get comfortable on camera.
Video is incredibly powerful. And, the camera will love you if you work at it. Film yourself walking around the house over and over again if you aren’t a natural, Morrison advised. There’s simply no reason not to. And, never forget: People love dogs. If you can incorporate your pup into your video, “Do it,” she said. When her two labs bounded into the frame of the “video letter” she was recording for Ted Nugent and his wife Shemane, she ultimately decided to go with that take. “I didn’t feel like there was a need to stop my camera… so I just kept going and introduced them. They’re little hams.” The Nugents quickly wrote back, “Love the dogs in your video! Would you like us to share it?”http://www.reviewengin.com/bloggers-playbook-review/

Related: Social-Media Marketing Is Not Dead: 10 Companies That Are Still Rocking It

Context is everything, of course. Before Morrison approaches people whose work she’s familiar with, she researches them even further. “I might genuinely admire someone, have listened to their music, and watched them on television, but I’m not one of those people who knows everything about them. If I’m going to approach someone, I respect them enough to research them.”

And if you’ve done your research, she said, you should have at least a sense of how well your four-legged creature is going to go over. Imperfect can be better than perfect. “Don’t wait until you feel like your video is 100 percent there to submit it.”

4. If you’re passionate about a cause, let them know.
“Above all, be genuine, though. No one likes phony compassion.”

Related: 6 New Social Media Marketing Tools the Experts Use. You Should, Too.

5. Continue customizing your recipe for success.
Morrison combs through webinars, magazine articles, and books looking for new “ingredients.” She keeps inspirational quotes “all over the place” to help her keep moving forward and shares them with others to help them do the same.

6. Listen more than you talk.
Without ever asking, Morrison said she’s gained valuable information about potential partners simply by letting people share. Learn to pause.

How do you practice your creativity when it comes to standing out from the clutter?
Everyone is influenced by something. And, according to Jonah Berger, that’s a good thing.

Berger is a Wharton professor and bestselling author of “Invisible Influence: The Hidden Forces That Shape Behavior” and “Contagious: Why Things Catch On.”

His research has given him a deep understanding of how influence works and what it takes to get your message heard.

“Whether you’re a nonprofit organization with no marketing budget or a small business owner with a great new service, knowing how to generate word-of-mouth will help you make your product, service or idea succeed,” Berger said. “And even if you don’t have anything you want to catch on, understanding how word of mouth works will help you better navigate the world around you.”

Recently, Berger shared with me some of the powerful insights he’s gained after spending more than 15 years studying social influence and its impact on how products and ideas catch on.

1. Word-of-mouth rules.
That’s right. People actually talk to each other, and word-of-mouth is still the primary way we communicate.“If you look at the data, only about seven percent of word-of-mouth is actually done online,” Berger explained. “And it’s these normal, everyday interactions have the biggest impact on our behavior,” he said.

So, while social media is certainly important, most communication is still face-to-face.

“With everyday conversations there’s no distraction. It’s just two people talking, so the influence and impact is much higher,” Berger said. “By understanding why people share in the first place, we can craft contagious content, and help our message and ideas travel further.”

In fact, word of mouth is nearly always the best way to attract new clients. Regardless of pricing, referrals have likely already struck up a conversation about you with an impartial third party, which makes them more likely to want to work with you.

2. Follow the STEPPS, and boost your clicks and shares.
How can you get people talking about your product or services through conversations and online?

Berger has published hundreds of pages on this topic. To simplify his findings, he created an acronym called STEPPS, which stands for Social Currency, Triggers, Emotion, Public, Practical Value and Stories. These are the basic principles behind how we are influenced, and it’s the key to understanding why some things go viral while others don’t.

Related: The 7 Factors That Make for Viral Content

Here’s a thumbnail sketch of what STEPPS stands for:

Social Currency is the idea that people care about how they look to others and want to appear knowledgeable. They share things that make them look smart.
Triggers are sights, sounds and other stimuli that remind people about your product or service, and prompt them to share and talk about it. Build your marketing campaign around everyday triggers, and people will be reminded about your product just by going through life.
Emotion compels us. We are connected to feelings rather than function.
The more something is in Public eye, the more people will seek to imitate it.

Useful things have Practical Value and will be shared and passed along.
We are drawn to Stories. We share things that are wrapped up in a compelling narrative.
“I’ve helped lots of companies and organizations apply the STEPPS model to increase shares,” Berger said. “Harnessing these principles can boost clicks by more than 60 percent, and in some cases and shares by over 150 percent.”

3. Advertising isn’t everything, but it can help.
The whole purpose of using these basic principles is to try to capture people’s attention – a task that has become harder as people are constantly being barraged by information.

According to Berger, in order to stand out, you’ve got to give people unique content, which is difficult to do when most people are turned off by traditional ads.