3 Tricks to Take Face Time From Awkward to Zoftique

3 Face Time TricksAbout mid afternoon, my brother in law pulled out his cell phone and then his pad computer and announced, “It’s time for some face time.”

I thought, “Do I have to?”

Today there are a myriad of ways to use technology to see who we’re having a conversation with. The results run the gamut from awkward to zoftique.

You can use:
An app on your Smart Phone
An app on your Pad Computer
Your Laptop or Desktop computer via Skype or meeting software.

Is there a device that doesn’t have a camera and microphone on it anymore?

Here are some things to consider before you opt to call or receive a call using “Face Time”

No matter what device you are reading this on, I want you to turn around and look at what is behind you. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

  • Would you be comfortable with an unannounced visitor seeing that?
  • Does the view of you and your surroundings convince people of your expertise?
  • Will the prospect have a better impression of you?
  • Will they remember you or your background images?
  • Most importantly, does the background meet their expectations about you?

Face Time used to mean an in-person meeting. You knew it was going to happen. You dressed for it. You got ready for it, reviewing information and honing your observations and questions.

Today, you could be face to face in a heartbeat. Here’s how to be ready:

  1. Plan for these calls. If you know it is going to happen you can be ready. If you plan for it you can better control what is going on around you. You won’t wind up talking from the back of cab on our way to a costume party which is where we connected with my nephew.
  2. Be aware of the background. In your office take the look suggested above. In the field, try to find a quiet place with a neutral background and a low probability of people wandering through it.
  3. Look at yourself before you answer and make sure to disconnect. Too often people that work from home simply forget where they are and the fact they are in their pajamas (or less). Then, too you can stay online with some technologies and not know it. Just disconnect if someone forgets to do so. You probably don’t want to know what you might see or overhear.

As Humphrey Bogart would say, “Here’s lookin’ at you kid.”

Jerry FletcherJerry Fletcher is a beBee ambassador, founder and Grand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and business development on and off-line. He is also a sought-after International Speaker.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com


Brand is a Choice

Brand is CVhoiceEver take part in an on-line group?

You can call it a hive or a chat group, a fan page or even a mastermind. It all comes down to the same thing: somebody is trying to get traction for an idea or viewpoint.

You made a choice.

Why? What connected with you to cause you to sign up or opt in or get involved?

Often we join in because we’ve been wooed by profits raining down or we’ll get access or influence we might never enjoy on our own. We decide to get involved and then we rationalize.

Emotions control us more than we think.

For your brand, what you think, feel and believe are not important.

Don’t let emotion control how you brand yourself, your business and your products.

Why your customer selects your offering is the single most important consideration. Their choice is what defines your brand.

You have to get them to accept your view or idea before they will buy. Sometimes that takes a while. You have to be less of a funnel and more of a colleague.

Incorporate these 3 special marketing tips in your approach:

  • Make it easy for folks to understand. Give them resources that head where you are trying to get them to go. Use games and incentives to keep them interested. Let them add things that will help others come along.
  • Use your influence in this group and others to crank up the energy. Start a feedback loop with all the social networks available to you.
  • Get endorsed. Ask for good reviews. Have the contacts in group ask their friends and colleagues to help put your group over the top.

It works. Here’s an example:

Liam Austin, the founder of Small Today started a LinkedIn group in 2008.

Today, with over 100,000 members, it is the second largest group for small business owners on the platform.

A year ago Liam realized the group hadn’t yet seen its full potential.

Liam and his team created the LinkedIn Success Summit to give small business owners a chance to listen and learn from the very best. The experts and influencers that most of us wouldn’t have the chance to question and learn from otherwise.

Small Today followed with a summit on e-mail and another on Instagram. Each summit generated over 30 hours of video training and an Action Guide that includes a short summary with key-takeaways from each session.

After recognizing that “the money is in the list” Liam started to build his own email list.  He grew his list by 48,000 people in 8 months.

The original subscription for Small Today was $27/month. Today it is $70/month.

Do the math.

Jerry Fletcher is the founder and Grand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

Jerry Fletcher, Speaking in olombiaHis consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Brand development, Positioning and business development on and off-line. He is also a sought-after International Speaker.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

Get all the Brand Success Stories. Sign up at http://www.brandbraintrust.com


Why Small Guys Should Think Twice About Social Media

I learned a few things when I spent a day last week at a conference of small business people.

Elephant in the room--social mediaKate asked, “Like what?”

“There’s an elephant in the room,” I said. “The noise about that big beast is the thing that gets in the way of most of those folks having a solid marketing and sales plan. The keep being told about the tremendous reach of the major social programs. The data is reasonably accurate but the fact that Facebook gets to sky zillion people doesn’t translate to people coming into your establishment in east Podunk Junction where the total population within 20 minutes of your store wouldn’t fill a football stadium. Part of the problem is that they believe the big numbers will be a magic charm.”

Chris chimed in, “Then there is the don’t know factor. They don’t know what they don’t know and I don’t know if they will ever find out!”

“Easy there, web master,” said Rob our branding guru, “you’ll get yourself all whupped up like the topping on one of grannie’s lemon cream pies only it ain’t quite so tasty. What I mean is that some folks didn’t grow up with all this stuff and so they just don’t get it. Give’ em a break. Shucks, they make great customers for you.”

“You have a point,” said Chris.

Kate asked “So why do you still have a long face?”

“Because they want all the bells and whistles but they aren’t willing to learn how the digital world works.”

“Boy is that the truth,” said Rick, our Direct Marketing expert. “I get requests that require the most sophisiticated approaches every day from people that don’t have a clue as to the tools we have to use to meet their expectations. They want to do automated digital marketing and are not willing to learn what is reqired and what it costs both in terms of time and money whether they do it themselves or hire a pro.

Gail interjected, “Look, I’m one of those people that just doesn’t quite get it. Not because I haven’t tried. I’ve taken classes and I try to stay up to date with webinars and online resources but they keep changing stuff and I don’t have time to keep up, I have a business to run. You and the other digital types need to remember that all these things are tools. I don’t have to relearn how to use hammer each time I need one and you know as well as I do that most manuals for this stuff are non-existent or written for the cognoscetti not for us non-techies!”

“That is what I heard all day long,” I said. “Over breakfast a former sales person for a Fortune 500 company that had opened her own business said she was much happier but just couldn’t figure out whether to go networking and making cold calls or figure out how to put Twitter and Facebook to work for her.”

“So you told her to get to Networking and Cold calling, I’m sure,” said Kate.

“Yes, I said, “but I suggested that she should start asking customers if they used social media and if so which and for what. Later in the day in my presentation I noted that a recent Gallup poll says that 62% of Americans do not use social media to make buying decisions.”

“However,” Rick said, if she asks the right questions, once she learns about her customers she  will have a better fix on an approach to all the digital marketing she might do.

“Right,” I said. “All day long it came back to the wrong questions. In my view, the right ones are:

  1. What media (traditional or digital) do your prospects or customers actually use? Why?
  2. How do they relate to it and the offers they find in it? Why?
  3. If they had to pick just one way of being contacted which would it be? Why?

What do you think?


Jerry and his merry band will be back next week

This blog is from the experience of Jerry Fletcher. Learn more at his consulting website: www.JerryFletcher.com

Need a speaker that this crowd deemed “Captivating and Practical” ? Learn more at: www.NetworkingNinja.com