That’s probably the first question your prospect or future clients will ask in their minds when they see an email, direct message or blog from you. Who is this person? That simple and familiar question is your first obstacle right there: your Personal Brand.
“People buy from people”. One of the many catch phrases you’ll hear if you are in sales or marketing. It is true though, the same as with food: “you eat with your eyes first”. Think on your favorite dessert: don’t you start enjoying it the moment you see it? What both statements refer to is the fact that before the good or service comes into play, you do.
It takes us back to a simple scenario and yet another catch phrase: you are your own Brand. This is one of the four pillars of Social Selling actually, your own Brand. Even before you can deliver a sales pitch or endorse a Brand, solution or product, it is your own presence, your reflection what makes the sale.
Anyone can sell stuff. Exceptional sales people can sell specific stuff for a lot of money to big Companies. Legendary professionals are the ones that sell beyond money or Company names: they sell themselves. That is why they become legend and why we remember them. Guess what’s one of the factors they have in common? A very strong personal Brand.
Once the question is out there there’s just precious moments to answer it. Who is this person? You’ve probably sent out a direct message through some social network, or emailed that person, or maybe even posted a blog and mentioned them. You got their attention and now you need to answer that question.
If you really got them interested, guess what they’ll do next? They’ll search for you on Google, Linkedin, Twitter, maybe even on Facebook and then there’s just a few possible scenarios.
A. Find you and like you
B. Find you and don’t like you
C.Don’t find you at all
I think you’ll agree with me: Scenario A is what we all aim to, and Scenario B only means we can get better. The one you want to avoid is Scenario C because it basically means you don’t exist, and if you don’t exist, how can you sell anything?
The 3 Scenarios
They found you and like you. Your Online Persona is very solid, your Personal Brand tells a story and there’s no doubt you are a professional to do business with. Your profiles are updated and you actively share relevant information to your business and theirs. This is the desired state for anyone doing Social Selling, yet getting there takes time and effort. You only get there once you’ve made it a part of your routine and integrated it into your day-to-day. You my friend, don’t need to be a Rock Star but you definitely look like one to whoever found you. Best way to know? Once they’ve seen your profile, they reply or answer back and if you’re lucky they might even comment something about you or your profiles.
They found you and don’t like you: There’s something about your Online Persona that’s basically off. Maybe your profile pictures are old or poorly taken. Maybe your profiles don’t tell a story or you just don’t share or author enough content to show you understand about business. This is the equivalent of a poorly served plate of food. Can you imagine ordering a dessert and not wanting to eat it because it just doesn’t look right? This is a great scenario because it gives you the opportunity to change. You are likely not spending a lot of time thinking on what your image sells. You might be a sales Ace…yet you’re not desirable. Ego-shocking, right? Quick fix: spend more time on your Brand.
They can’t find you at all: If you are into Sales and you’re interested in incorporating Social Selling as part of your strategy, this is just plain wrong. Think about it: it’s 2016, Google has been around for a long time now and so have Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter. There’s even other Social Networks that are becoming rich with user-authored content…and yet you’re nowhere to be found. That puts you in one of two buckets: you are either not interested on showing up in searches or you are not into sales. None of them are good if you are trying to sell something so maybe you need to evaluate if you are indeed going to do something about it or not.
Creating your personal Brand is the first step and most relevant one of Social Selling and likely, the one where most people just don’t spend enough time. It is not a one time thing and not just one simple action: it’s a motion you learn and repeat through your life as a sales person, it is part of your sales process.
First step: look at your profiles, at your Personal Brand or Online Persona and ask yourself: who are you?