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:
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.