These four small pieces of advice can make a big difference for you and your organization.
#1 IT’S NOT WHAT YOU KNOW OR WHO YOU KNOW — IT’S WHO KNOWS YOU.
Many people blame their lack of progress in sales or marketing on not knowing the right person to approach. But most new business comes from people who know you, not some big shot you approach to ask for a referral.
And “knowing someone” is not always defined as having been introduced. Research shows that people often fail to seek out professional services they need because they don’t know anyone who offers those services. When a professional advertises, the public feels they know him or her. And they get more inquiries because people now “know” them.
The same goes for organizations that have a large social media presence. More followers equals more people who know them — and usually, more business.
#2 SEEK AND USE ONLINE RATINGS WHENEVER POSSIBLE.
You know those little star ratings next to a product on Amazon or just about any website that sells something directly? Maybe you’ve never rated a product or written a review for a product or service, but you instinctively check the ratings and reviews. The majority of online buyers do.
Online ratings are highly trusted. In fact, online ratings are the second-most-trusted ratings — the only referral that rates higher is one from a family member or friend.
If there’s any way to add ratings and comments to your products and services — even if they’re not sold directly from your website — do so. It has a huge impact.
#3 HAVE FANS? ENCOURAGE THEM TO RECOMMEND YOU ONLINE.
Do you have some real fans of your brand? We call them “Brand Advocates,” and they’re worth their weight in gold. That’s because of the influence a Brand Advocate can have in selling more of your product or service.
Let’s look at the numbers. A study conducted by the Pew Research Center in February 2012 determined that the average Facebook user has 229 Facebook “Friends.”
If that average Facebook user posts a message, and his or her Friends repost that message, it reaches 52,441 people.
If that group reposts it, it reaches over 12 million people! That means that a Brand Advocate has the potential to reach 12 million people with a positive comment or recommendation. And that’s just a post on Facebook. Many of these same advocates recommend the brands they champion in a number of channels, including traditional word of mouth.
#4 KEEP YOUR KEY RESOURCE RUNNING STRONG.
Your key marketing resource is you. Functioning at your peak is critical to producing great marketing results and being creative and innovative. After I spent many years trying to prove I could work longer and harder, I realized how wrong that was. I now know there are four personal practices that keep me physically and mentally at my peak:
- Good, quality sleep — and enough of it.
- Eating right.
- Mindfulness/Meditation (I call this “brain training”).