Social Branding for Every Sales Person
If you are a Professional Services salesperson and lacking ongoing new business, all you might be missing is a strong Social Brand and an investment in engaging, original social content.
So what is Social Branding of the Professional Services Salesperson?
I often hear Professional Services Sales professionals complain about the ups and downs of the market and their sales cycle. They either do not have enough leads from marketing efforts or have leads which are unqualified or both.
These Sales Pros come from every B2B services industry (financial services, accounting, real estate, consulting). In my 15 years of Social Media Consulting and Sales Coaching, I have worked with them and heard this same complaint from all corners. What most don’t understand YET is that the key to their sustainable, ongoing sales success has everything to do with their own brand building. As well, of course, in using their brands to drive influence through the use of smart social selling and personal brand marketing in general.
As a Personal Branding Consultant, who understands that everyone who sells needs to become a master not only at sales, but a master of creating a unique and compelling brand, I focus on Social Branding of the Professional Services Salesperson. If you are in Professional Services Sales in any way, shape or form, you should consider doing the same.
Here is what those who succeed in using their own brand and social media have done to win and sustain new business:
1. They carve a personal brand niche that is unwavering
Where I generally start with personal branding for my clients, similar to a coach or a therapist, is to help my clients understand what their niche is in what they do. The niche that they inevitably decide upon is what they need to commit to, day and day out.
This is why I titled my latest book on personal branding online “How to Brand Yourself Online Like A CEO” because a CEO has to be unwavering in his or her commitment to running a company. The same is true for a sales professional. Once a sales pro decides to be an expert or thought-leader in a certain area, he or she must be diligent about knowing and practicing everything there is to know and do in that area of focus.
2. They build an online lead generation machine via their Social Brand Content
To drive ongoing qualified online lead generation, you must have a personal brand that is visible, dynamic, fresh, unique, compelling and authentic. Sales pros with many years of experience, such as the senior-level CEO’s and executives I generally work with, have built up a strong Rolodex and years of experience. But that is not enough….
The Sales professionals who earn more money from online efforts invest not only money; but also daily work (time) into their own online personal brands. By investing this necessary time, they are able to focus on driving up value and visibility around themselves and their area of focus, essentially their market position. This includes defining a proper personal content strategy and producing content around that strategy.
To get you started, think about what content you can commit to, when, where, how and why? And what content types make the most sense for you m your time, your business and your target audience? There are many types to choose from including:
- Blog posts
- Custom Illustrations
- Motion Graphics
- Short Form Video
- Long Form Video
- Case Study and Presentation Content
What makes the most sense for you? Do you or does your organization already have this content? Maybe it just needs to be digitized or reformatted?
Start by using a simple Google sheets or excel sheet and make a list of all the content you already have to see what can be repurposed or further developed.
Here is a quick example from a law firm client of a video my agency did. We paired this with a video strategy, LinkedIn Marketing, a related series of articles and tied it into their sales funnel for immediate new business results as part of my service – Social Branding of the Professional Services Salesperson.
Commercial Real estate sales professionals, for example, which I referenced in a previous LinkedIn article I wrote, “Personal Online Branding Gives Real Estate Professionals an Edge” go from zero to 100 in their sales results by truly focusing in daily, day after day, on supporting their online brands.
3. They are unafraid of engaging on LinkedIn
LinkedIn Sales Coaching and LinkedIn Profile Enhancement, LinkedIn Marketing & Sales Training and Keynote Speaking on LinkedIn are three of my most in-demand services from the majority of my clients. However, I have come across many professional sales people that feel afraid or concerned about going all the way with LinkedIn and using content to drive business. For those that understand the power of brand-building and relationship development on the world’s most powerful; B2B Social network win new business on an ongoing basis.
My best example of this is a Senior level Financial Advisor client of mine and now good friend out of St.Louis. He manages my favorite LinkedIn Group, The Hockey Players Doing Business Group, on LinkedIn (yes I am a hockey player and yes ice and yes I play in a men’s league) and came to me for LinkedIn advice. I convinced him that all he needed was a smart strategy, a polished LinkedIn profile and ongoing authentic content to get business and yes we can do this even if he is regulated. So I went to work to create his new LinkedIn Profile (some of clients refer to this as LinkedIn Architecture, which I love) and a content strategy with search optimization and in just a few short weeks he gained, no lie, a big new client on LinkedIn! So why did this happen, well because he was unafraid, a giver, enthusiastic and willing to really engage.
You can check out his profile here – Shannon Lewandoski, Senior Financial Services Advisor LinkedIn Profile
These are just three of the ways Professional Services Sales professionals are using social branding or personal branding online to earn more on a consistent basis.
Top Picks in Asset Allocation
Written b: John Bilton, Head of Global Multi-Asset Strategy, Multi-Asset Solutions
As global growth broadens out and the reflation theme gains traction, the outlook brightens for risky assets
Four times a year, our Multi-Asset Solutions team holds a two-day-long Strategy Summit where senior portfolio managers and strategists discuss the economic and market outlook. After a rigorous examination of a wide range of quantitative and qualitative measures and some spirited debate, the team establishes key themes and determines its current views on asset allocation. Those views will be reflected across multi-asset portfolios managed by the team.
From our most recent summit, held in early March, here are key themes and their macro and asset class implications:
Key themes and their implications
Asset allocation views
For the first time in seven years, we see growing evidence that we may get a more familiar end to this business cycle. After feeling our way through a brave new world of negative rates and “lower for longer,” we’re dusting off the late-cycle playbook and familiarizing ourselves once again with the old normal. That is not to say that we see an imminent lurch toward the tail end of the cycle and the inevitable events that follow. Crucially, with growth broadening out and policy tightening only glacially, we see a gradual transition to late cycle and a steady rise in yields that, recent price action suggests, should not scare the horses in the equity markets.
If it all sounds a bit too Goldilocks, it’s worth reflecting that, in the end, this is what policymakers are paid to deliver. While there are persistent event risks in Europe and the policies of the Trump administration remain rather fluid, the underlying pace of economic growth is reassuring and the trajectory of U.S. rate hikes is relatively accommodative by any reasonable measure. So even if stock markets, which have performed robustly so far this year, are perhaps due a pause, our conviction is firming that risk asset markets can continue to deliver throughout 2017.
Economic data so far this year have surprised to the upside in both their level and their breadth. Forward-looking indicators suggest that this period of trend-like global growth can persist through 2017, and risks are more skewed to the upside. The U.S. economy’s mid-cycle phase will likely morph toward late cycle during the year, but there are few signs yet of the late-cycle exuberance that tends to precede a recession. This is keeping the Federal Reserve (Fed) rather restrained, and with three rate hikes on the cards for this year and three more in 2018, it remains plausible that this cycle could set records for its length.
Our asset allocation reflects a growing confidence that economic momentum will broaden out further over the year. We increase conviction in our equity overweight (OW), and while equities may be due a period of consolidation, we see stock markets performing well over 2017. We remain OW U.S. and emerging market equity, and increase our OW to Japanese stocks, which have attractive earnings momentum; we also upgrade Asia Pacific ex-Japan equity to OW given the better data from China. European equity, while cheap, is exposed to risks around the French election, so for now we keep our neutral stance. UK stocks are our sole underweight (UW), as we expect support from the weak pound to be increasingly dominated by the economic challenges of Brexit. On balance, diversification broadly across regions is our favored way to reflect an equity OW in today’s more upbeat global environment.
With Fed hikes on the horizon, we are hardening our UW stance on duration, but, to be clear, we think that fears of a sharp rise in yields are wide of the mark. Instead, a grind higher in global yields, roughly in line with forwards, reasonably reflects the gradually shifting policy environment. In these circumstances, we expect credit to outperform duration, and although high valuations across credit markets are prompting a greater tone of caution, we maintain our OW to credit.
For the U.S. dollar, the offsetting forces of rising U.S. rates and better global growth probably leave the greenback range-bound. Event risks in Europe could see the dollar rise modestly in the short term, but repeating the sharp and broad-based rally of 2014-15 looks unlikely. A more stable dollar and trend-like global growth create a benign backdrop for emerging markets and commodities alike, leading us to close our EM debt UW and maintain a neutral on the commodity complex.
Our portfolio reflects a world of better growth that is progressing toward later cycle. The biggest threats to this would be a sharp rise in the dollar or a political crisis in Europe, while a further increase in corporate confidence or bigger-than-expected fiscal stimulus are upside risks. As we move toward a more “normal” late-cycle phase than we dared hope for a year back, fears over excessive policy tightening snuffing out the cycle will grow. But after several years of coaxing the economy back to health, the Fed, in its current form, will be nothing if not measured..
Learn how to effectively allocate your client’s portfolio here.
This document is a general communication being provided for informational purposes only. It is educational in nature and not designed to be a recommendation for any specific investment product, strategy, plan feature or other purpose. Any examples used are generic, hypothetical and for illustration purposes only. Prior to making any investment or financial decisions, an investor should seek individualized advice from a personal financial, legal, tax and other professional advisors that take into account all of the particular facts and circumstances of an investor’s own situation.
J.P. Morgan Asset Management is the marketing name for the asset management business of JPMorgan Chase & Co and its affiliates worldwide. Copyright 2017 JPMorgan Chase & Co. All rights reserved.
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