When you’re in business for yourself, there are some things prospects do need to know about you in order to make a good business decision about hiring you. When you hide these basics, it can make it look like you have something to hide, you’re not serious about your business, or you’re just hard to work with. These are all thing that make marketing harder! So if you’re looking for business, you may need to open up a bit.
Here are some things to ask yourself if you are on the private side:
1. Is your “About the Company” page on your web site customized to your executives’ bios so that your firm has personality?
Or has it been generically written by a cookie-cutter web factory? If your prospect can’t distinguish why they should do business with you – or even who you are – then that’s something to consider correcting right away. It may have worked to stay fairly anonymous even a few years ago, but those days are gone.
2. Are you on LinkedIn?
It’s certainly not necessary to be on every social media platform, but LinkedIn is the professional’s gold standard. Post as much as you dare, and especially post a professionally shot headshot photo.
3.Do you have client stories and testimonials posted?
If not, it looks like you have no clients. The content in a thoughtful testimonial helps future prospects find out what you’re like to work with. I highly encourage posting them if your license and industry allows it.
Here are some things to ask yourself in case you’re not private enough:
1. Do you hide personal posts from clients?
If you have radically opposite political opinions (which have nothing to do with your work delivery) from potential prospects, consider whether they might be turning off your potential clients. There’s nothing more volatile than politics, religion, and sex, and if you post on these comments, be sure you post to a list of friends only.
2. Do you avoid posting about playing games on Facebook?
There’s nothing more unprofessional than being asked to play a game on Facebook. If you’re on Facebook and you play games, keep these posts and activities away from clients’ eyes.
3. Do you post business tips, answers to technical questions, or motivational thoughts at least occasionally in your social media accounts, on forums, or in other places?
If you sell your expertise, you’ll want to consider becoming a thought leader in your specialty area. There are many ways to do that, through articles, speeches, press interviews, and social media.
If you’re introverted, the quiet type, a little shy, or all of the above, it might feel a little uncomfortable putting your ideas out there for the world to see. Take a small step to get started, and do a little more ach month until you get more comfortable. When you start to receive positive feedback, this will help you become more confident that what you have to say is valuable to your clients and prospects.
Saying “yes” to each of these ideas above will help you get a better marketing presence so prospects can find you, get to know you, and reach out to you.
I’d love for you to post your comments about privacy and how it affects marketing. Share your stories and ideas on my blog or on my Facebook page here http://www.facebook.com/sandismithleyva.