The greatest marketing tip of all time

Marketing is simple when you begin to understand that the first product you need to market is yourself.

Before I get into the meat of this post, I want to apologize for my lack of written word over the last few weeks. Well, I sort of want to apologize. I guess what I mean to say, is that I feel the need to explain myself.

Over the last two months, I’ve cranked my community involvement into overdrive! To some, this may sound like a very unproductive use of my time, but I’m here to confess in real-time, that getting aggressively involved in my community has been the single best business decision of my short career as an entrepreneur.

Greatest Marketing TipMarketing a product or the latest widget can easily be accomplished somewhat successfully from behind the comfort of your reclining brown leather desk chair. But marketing yourself, well, that requires an entirely different set of skills.

With the market becoming quickly saturated with over-inflated marketing messages composed of awesome promises of money well spent and unbelievable savings, it’s never been more important for you as the marketer to create an image of a face to your written name. Developing trust is not something that erupts between the pages of a three-part sales letter.

Sure you can get the ball rolling by issuing a soft introduction with a thumbnail image and short bio, but is that really enough to germinate a massive growth of trust between the customer and your business?

I asked a friend of mine the other day a seemingly simple question. Seemingly simple indeed, but if you’re the type of person who doesn’t often think introspectively, this may be one of the hardest questions you’ve ever had to ask yourself.

“If two people, whom you had just met at a networking event, were standing in a quiet corner of the room out of earshot and your name came up in conversation, what words do you think they would use to describe you?”

Our favorite person to think about is ourselves. But most of us have a difficult time being honest about how we may be perceived by others.

Will you be described as funny, knowledgeable, smarmy, vain, delightful or eccentric? And are these descriptive words congruent with those you wish to convey within your marketing message?

Your product or service is constantly holding hands with your own self-promoted personal brand. In fact, nothing can destroy your business faster than a negative perception of its owner or team!

Does this mean you have to be someone you’re not? Not at all.

I am suggesting that you develop the skills necessary to look at yourself from an outside perspective, and then have the ability to frame your marketing message in a way that matches your personality, appearance, lifestyle, morals and values.

My marketing business was created in an effort to help small businesses increase the impact of their message and the distance it travels. I want my service offerings to be the solution to their problems. So in an effort to manufacture a hard-stamped image of myself as the guy who’s always willing to help, I joined several service oriented clubs, groups and committees within my community. I became active in the local Chamber of Commerce, and built a social circle consisting of like-minded supporters focused on a similar mission.

And I really think that right there is the secret sauce!

If you want to be successful, surround yourself with others who dream as big as or even bigger than yourself.

My business mantra has always been to over-deliver. To provide my clients with a quality service that yields massive results. In order for that message to gain credibility, I have to practice the same effort when developing my personal brand. When I volunteer, I give it my all. When I say I am going to be there, I make sure I’m there fifteen minutes early.

And when I make a promise, I keep it!

The day that I default on my promise, is the same day my trust level begins to decline. And with that decline comes diminishing returns.

Sounds like too much work? Well working your ass off to create a legacy you can hang your hat on has never been easy, but from my experience so far…

It’s well worth it!

Your product or service is only has trustworthy as your personal brand.

“If two people, whom you had just met at a networking event, were standing in a quiet corner of the room out of earshot and your name came up in conversation, what words do you think they would use to describe you?”

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P.S. For more tips on marketing your business, as well as yourself, be sure to sign up for our weekly email. It’s sent out every Tuesday morning at 7AM CST. Thanks!

~Andy Sokolovich

photo credit: mutsmuts via photopin cc

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