Saturday, September 6, 2008

Raising the profile of product: YOU!

If you happen to be in the service industry, chances are your brand product is you. You are the sole provider of the service and as such you are also the brand. Even if you go by another name, it is wise to enhance your expert profile. You can do this effectively in any numbers of ways. Here are a lucky seven to consider:

1) Public Speaking. This is a great way to not only boost your expert profile, but to pick up new leads. Speaking on a topic you are passionate about positions you nicely. It gives your audience a chance to witness your personality. It is also your opportunity to give something free. In this case, it's advice on a broad scale. This shows your confidence and a willingness to offer help.

2) Corporate Blogging.
For my money, this is even more important than a website. It provides you with a portal to help businesses with no strings attached. A properly maintained blog, keeps readers coming back. Replying to comments and browsing other blogs and leaving comments there is a remarkable way to build an audience for your opinion. The business press frequently browses business blogs looking for experts to interview or inspire stories. These unsolicited opportunities happen more than you might think. Every time it happens to me, my traffic increases.

3) Social Networking. Another very personal opportunity. You can start your own business community and invite the world in. Many businesses treat these networks as genuine communities and are loyal to its members.

4) Email Marketing. A terrific way to keep YOU in front of your audience. Timed releases keep a consistent message out in your marketplace. When they say, "out of sight, out of mind" they knew what they were talking about. You want your brand top of mind.

5) Regular newsletters also keep your brand in front of your customers. It also gives you a chance to brag and inform, much like a blog. It is one more opportunity. I use all of these avenues to promote my brand.

6) Harvest email to build a valuable opt-in list of business contacts. So long as you are providing valuable information to your audience, you are consistently building an honest relationship with them. This trust in you will eventually translate into new business

7) Make your website a content rich destination. This gives users a reason to linger and thus exposes them to your brand and service offerings.

Anything positive that you do reflect favorably on your brand. Be sure that everything you offer whether it is free or has a fee attached has the same level of quality. Great brands are not built on crap. Be sure your brand image is consistent and reflects who you are. I've seen plenty of free product that looks like it's free. My attitude is that my free material is another form of marketing and as such, its production values must be as powerful as the paid product. This is what will strengthen brand YOU.


Millie said...

Good post.

Ed Roach said...

Thank you for dropping by Millie - have a great week.

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