OPINION: Becoming known is a key step on the pathway to sales success.
‘How do I make a (better) name for myself?’ is one of the questions I have been asked most frequently over the years.
Here is the premise, the definition, and the answer – in sales it’s not who you know, it’s who knows you.
The challenge is not just making a name for yourself or building your brand, it’s building the components that generate that name. How do you achieve more recognition, more notoriety, and a better reputation in your market and your community? Those are the elements that lead to a better name.
And to be clear, I’m talking about a better name for both company and individual.
There are no easy answers, and there are very few answers that don’t require commitment, planning, and hard work.
The good news is that most salespeople are not willing to do the hard work it takes to make selling easy. So if you’re willing, you automatically move to the top 10 per cent. And if you execute, you’re in the top 5 per cent.
When the economy is in transition (that’s a nice way to put it, isn’t it?), it’s the easiest time for you to make a change, and begin to execute new ideas.
There are the things you must begin to put in place now. Below are the actions that lead to long-term name building that must be implemented, and built on.
It’s your way to communicate your thoughts and ideas to the world. Blog to show your human side. Make your blog a family affair, not just your business side. Show your person, your personality, your passion, and your fun.
• Create your own weekly e-zine
Feature valuable information and highlight your customers. Look at my weekly email magazine Sales Caffeine as an example. Go to www.salescaffeine.com and read about it.
• Web presence
Invest in a small but powerful website that looks like something people would read, admire, tell others about, and maybe even buy from. Start with a one page website that talks about how you treat your customers. Make a list of the 10 most valuable things you are dedicated to. Later you can add more pages, pictures, graphics, and pizzazz. Start small and be compelling.
• Be proactive
This means hitting both the phone and the ‘send’ button. Make 10 calls a day that have value, and send 25 emails that have meaning to the recipient. Build relationships and earn referrals.
Write something that puts you in front of customers and prospects. Put an article in your trade publication or your chamber magazine. Writing leads to recognition. Writing positions you as an expert and an authority.
• Be heard
Give a speech or two at civic organisations. Speaking leads to perceived leadership.
Video your value proposition, video your testimonials, video your philosophy of sales and service. Post your videos on YouTube. Your customers and prospects will find them, and find you more attractive than your (lazy) competitors.
• Local connection
Get involved in your community. Pick one charity or civic organisation to get involved with and assert leadership in.
Be a value provider, not a beggar, a solicitor, or a salesman. People will buy if they perceive your value, and they will spread the word, and your name.
Be patient with it. Invest in it. Use it to your best advantage. It takes time, commitment and consistency to really build a name for yourself.
Your name means everything. Name and reputation are intertwined. Your value-based information, your exceptional service, and your quality of product and person determine your reputation, your name, and your fate. Those who become valuable to their customers, their marketplace, and their community are the ones who win short term and long term.
When someone says your name, they’re also going to say one of five things about you – something great, something good, nothing, something bad or something really bad. Whatever they say, determines your fate.
If you want to build name recognition, and a great reputation, you have to dedicate yourself to the long-term process, and the short-term work.
There are no easy answers.
Jeffrey Gitomer is an American author, professional speaker and business trainer, who writes and lectures internationally on sales, customer loyalty and personal development. © 2017 All rights reserved. Don’t reproduce this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.