You grow a mountain of 8,000 connections by adding two minutes. Every day. For four years.
In my GMail Contacts database Marcin Floryan has the tags “M30 Reviewer”, “Conference Attendee” and “Hangout on Air”.
I’ve honored J.B Rainsberger with the tags “M30 Testimonial”, “Book Author”, and “NOOP.NL Commenter”.
And Francois Beauregard I tagged with “Business Partner”, “Happy Melly”, and “M30 Facilitator”.
I have 8,069 contacts in my database now, and 40 different tags. Many of those people are tagged because, for years, I have been keeping track of my connections to other people. Some have just one tag (maybe “Company Visit” or “Workout Subscriber”). Other people have ten or more tags when I communicated with them in many different contexts. But if you’ve been in contact with me at some point, there’s a good chance you’re tagged.
That’s one reason I use tags: I tag to remember context.
When I get an email from someone and the tag says “M30 Launch”, I think Ah, this was somebody who was at my book launch 3 years ago! Or when the tag says “HCW Translator” I think, Of course! This guy translated my How to Change the World book to Nepalese.Tags are my replacement mechanism for underexploited neurons.
With 8000+ people in my database, and only slightly more neurons in my brain, that’s very useful!
Tags are even more useful when I want to reach out to everyone who organized a class with me (tag “Business Partner”). Or when I want to send an email to people who stayed in my house (tag “House Guests”). Or when I want to contact those who asked for my availability as a speaker (tag “Speaking Requests”).
That’s the other reason I use tags: I tag to refresh connections.
I have a recurring task called “Tag Them! Tag Them All!” (or something similar) on my To Do list. Every day, at the end of the night, I take two minutes to tag those I have been in contact with that day. That’s how you grow a mountain of connections. By adding two minutes. Every day. For four years.
The thing is, I didn’t start tagging people when I had 8,000 contacts.
I started when I had only a few hundred.
How many contacts do you have? How many tags?
And what should your database look like in 4 years?