April 26, 2010
When I hear the words consistent and business in the same sentence, I usually feel a bit of anxiety. The first thing that goes through my mind is blocked time and things I “have to” do. That’s not the kind of consistency I want to talk about. I’m talking about the consistency of who you are.
You may find yourself in many different networking groups with your niche market. You’ll see some familiar names in a lot of places. Have you ever read a post by one of these regulars and thought; “That can’t be the same person I met over there.” Have you ever met someone in person only to look at their website and wonder where THAT person was when you were speaking to them? What about the website with a bio that doesn’t match the rest of the site?
Okay, so you may be thinking pffft that stuff isn't important. Who cares? Guess what? Your potential clients care!! If they don't get a consistent picture of who you are, what you do, or what your brand looks like, then you are missing out on a key ingredient of the buying process…TRUST.
Think about this very carefully. When you hired your first coach or mentor, how long did you search? What did it take for you to say "yes" I want to work with her? How well did you have to know that person before even looking into what they offered? How many places did you go to research them? Was everything you looked at consistent? Did you see the same services and branding represented in all those places? You may not have noticed it at the time, but I bet you did. When we are about to delve into who we are or what we want for ourselves, we won't even look there before we trust the person who is going to help us explore.
Most people don't trust easily. That's why marketing exerts say you need to be in front of your potential clients as many times as you can possibly get there. People won't trust someone they don't feel they know. The more they see you, or experience you, the sooner they are going to be willing to trust you. Every time they see you or experience you, it needs to be consistent or you'll have to start over earning their trust.
Consistency may not be obvious, but it’s noticed. Here’s how consistency can affect your business relationships:
1) Clients will trust you earlier and easier.
2) You’ll attract clients that WANT to work with you.
3) It will be easy for others to refer your services, because they KNOW you.
4) Your unique offering will be very clear and easy to find.
Take a look at who you are with your clients and as a business owner. Bring yourself to the table with everything in your business and everyone who meets you. Clients who relate to you are going to find it easy to hire you. They’ll have a sense of who you are and what you have to offer. They’ll trust you.
So, it’s time to take a moment and prepare yourself for consistency.
1) Who are you as a Coach? Are you tough and challenging? Are you compassionate, quiet, and completely honest? Do you communicate in this way while establishing the relationship through your website, in networking meetings, on lists, in your brochures, sample calls etc… ? Prospective clients want to know who you are, make sure it gets into all of your marketing.
2) What kind of business owner are you? Organized and systematic? Are you organized with every piece of the client experience, or just until they become your client? The way you handle business is translated into who you are as a Coach.
3) What kind of business relationships do you create? Do you have the same kind of relationship with business partners as you have with your clients? Remember these are your referral partners. If they have an open, honest relationship with you, then they are bound to let referrals know.
Now, look for the technical consistencies. Go through your autoresponder system, your shopping cart, your newsletter, your blog your social networks, brochure, business card etc… and look for the following:
1) Does your branding look the same?
2) Do you have the same description (or is your concept the same) for describing what you do?
3) Is your title the same?
4) Is your picture the same?
5) Do you present your offerings (services, products etc…) in the same way?
Consistency is important to creating relationships throughout your business. Be authentic EVERYWHERE. Make sure you are consistently representing yourself in all your marketing materials and in person. Clients will trust you and buy from you much sooner.
Are you being consistent? Share your thoughts.
Kristen Beireis is the Trust Marketing Expert for Group Coaching Mastery. She helps coaches and other personal transformation professionals establish trust through marketing. First, she establishes a foundation that's rooted in your authentic differentiation. Then she follows up with solutions that bring consistency to everything that has your name on it — from your newsletter to your business card to your social media pages. And while she's happy to teach you how to do all this yourself, many of her clients love the way her team reduces their workload and overwhelm.
Greater trust means a shorter sales cycle, more of the right clients, and the confidence that comes from knowing your sales and marketing are in integrity with who you are as a person.
April 25, 2010
As a coach, you probably already know the importance of building relevant and useful content to attract and retain coaching clients. The "rules" around building that content have pretty much always been the same. Useful for the reader. No spammy content. Yet it's what you may not know about writing articles that can set you apart from your competitors — identifying just what your articles may be missing.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) experts agree that there are some essential elements that should be included in every article. Don't worry, it isn't a long list - just the essentials - and maybe one or two things that you haven't heard of before (SEO guys are secret sallies!)
1. Do your article titles have relevant and rich keywords?
2. Are your articles at least 250 words long? If so, great - but the search engines even love 400 words better!
3. Are you using your keywords throughout your article - naturally? Not too many or that's considered spam.
4. Do you have links in your articles? The search engines love content that refers to other RELATED content. So if you link to another related article on your blog or 3rd party site, in your article - it's better seo. Think Wikipedia.
5. Do you have some sort of clipart, photos, infographics, or related videos in your articles? Search engines love multi-media content, and other site owners tend to link to content with visuals more often. Now don't panic! You don't have to add images to every article you write if it's going to slow down your progress — but if you can spruce up an article with a little clipart (so inexpensive to use) - why not?
Would you like more article marketing and writing strategies like this? Then I invite you to grab my multi-media article marketing toolkit and get started adding the missing pieces of your articles today.
Lisa Angelettie is a professional coach, published author, and article marketing expert. She's been using articles exclusively since 2003 to drive traffic to the websites of her clients as well as her own. Lisa is the Article Marketing Expert for Group Coaching Mastery. Stop by and read some of Lisa's free article marketing tips over at her site: Article Marketing Tips
April 19, 2010
You have just created a beautiful website for your business and you are excited and want the world to see what you are all about. You carefully made sure all your links were working, that you included all the best content on your subject, you properly categorized your information and you are all ready to shout it out! BUT, have you forgotten a very important thing?
Are you making it easy for people to find you?
Do you have your contact info on every page - does your contact info include not only your email address, but a telephone number and if appropriate, the snail mail address of your business. Does it list the appropriate person's name in your company to contact for more information? I see this happening quite a lot and was quite pleased to see this great article on this very subject.
Carol Tice, A journalist with Entrepreneur Daily Dose, Online Biz has written http://blog.entrepreneur.com/2009/10/5-things-i-hate-about-your-web-site.php
Are you "shooting yourself in the foot" and sabotaging your own marketing efforts? I think this was a great reminder. Thanks to Carol Tice for writing it. I'm looking forward to reading more of her timely articles!
I'd love to hear your thoughts and comments on this topic - please post them in the comments section below! If you really like this post, and want to Tweet about it, I'd really appreciate that too!
Carol Deckert is a Networking Coach and the the founder of Referrals Unlimited Network. She has more than 8,500 first-level connections in LinkedIn and approximately 1,000 "friends" on FaceBook and more than 4,000 followers on Twitter! Carol knows you do need the numbers before you can accumulate quality connections, because not every connection will be a good one for you. Through her netweaving work, she helps others learn to do what she did, save them lots of time and heartache, by teaching them how to network efficiently and effectively. Contact Carol on Skype: Deckert1116