eBusiness Blog

The Networking Advantages of Attending Live Events

While on location at the WOW (Woman of Worth) Conference in Vernon earlier this year, I realized just how important it is to attend live events and do some good old fashioned business networking.

Today’s eTip shares some important things you can be doing while at a live event that can’t happen if you’re always hiding in front of your computer or smart phone:

 

Christine Awram is the founder and creator of these WOW events and she has them twice a year.

I have been enjoying attending them and that’s what had me creating this tip. It’s really important to get away from the computer and network in person. Attending events like this is a great way to build your business.

Even if it’s just a day-long event or if you can spare the time, a weekend or even week-long retreat.

Take the opportunity to Connect with the other attendees and find out what their challenges are. Many great business opportunities will present themselves once at the event.

Make an effort to get out and connect with your target market and build relationships.

Attending live events is a great way to build your businessClick To Tweet

Social media has made us comfortable sitting behind our cameras and smart phones but nothing beats a 1 on 1 live connection.

Do your homework and find out what events you can attend. Even if it’s just a luncheon it’s a great idea to get out and make those in-person connections.

If you have any questions at all please feel free leave a comment below and if you like these eTips subscribe to our newsletter and you’ll get an email every week with our eTips and articles designed to help solo entrepreneurs.

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.
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About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

10 Superstar Networking Tips to Grow Your Business

10 Superstar Networking Tips to Grow Your Business

One of the best investments you can make as a solopreneur or business person is in your personal development.  As a business owner you can only grow as far as your skills and knowledge can take you.

That’s why attending seminars, conferences and workshops is such a valuable experience.

I recently attended the WOW (Woman of Worth) Conference in Vernon BC and it was a fantastic experience. The founder, Christine Awram, has been holding these conferences for several years. Each event promises excellent motivational and inspirational speakers plus great opportunities to meet and mingle with like-minded women.

Dana Smithers - Law of AttractionThis year was exceptionally great due to one of our clients, Dana Smithers, being invited to be one of the keynote speakers.

She talked about the Law of Attraction and started a chain reaction of events that lead me to being up on stage taking a bow to a standing ovation! (The exercise was to put my intention out to the world that I am open to receiving speaking opportunities so hey, if you know of any….)

In addition to gaining next-level strategies, events like these offer an incredible opportunity to meet prospects, JV partners, and vendors.

So how can you make the most of your next event? Here’s some pro tips to network like a superstar.

  1. Rock Your Appearance

    Let your outfit be a conversation starter. Wear something that makes you feel like a million bucks and helps you radiate confidence.
     
    Bring a killer accessory like a unique pin, scarf, or pair of shoes that gets you noticed.  Make a great first impression that makes people think “I have to meet that person.”

  2. Prepare Yourself Mentally

    Know your purpose for being there.  Be passionate about what you do and let it shine.
     
    What do you want to learn? Look at the list of speakers and make a point to say hello to them. Ask yourself what 3 types of people you’d like to meet.  Get specific.  Visualize these people in the morning before the workshop or conference begins.
     
    This will help you attract exactly the right type of connections you will benefit most from.

  3. Show Up Early

    Arrive with extra time so you can grab a coffee, visit the vendor tables, and get to know a few people before everything starts to get busy. Be on the lookout for  people with whom you feel you can connect with and strike up a conversation with them.
     
    Attending early also gives you an opportunity to get a seat close enough to better see and hear the on-stage happenings.

  4. Be a Giver

    Have you ever met someone whom you feel wants to get something from you?  It gives off a bad negative energy, doesn’t it?  Avoid this from happening to you by shifting your energy to one of abundance and ask yourself how you can best serve others.
     
    When you meet someone be curious.  Get to know them.  Ask questions.  Find out how you can help this person.
     
    There is always a resource, compliment, connection, book, tip, or tool that you can offer to help someone.
     
    Can you interview them on your podcast?  Can you review their book on your blog? Can you co-host a webinar with them? While I was at the WOW event, I recorded 3 video eTips and did a couple of Facebook LIVE How can you capitalize on your time in a similar manner?

  5. Ask for Their Business Card

    It is always better to ask for the other person’s card.  Asking for their card feels better than shoving yours in their hand.
     
    Plus that leaves you in control so that you can send a follow-up when you return from the event.
     
    Write a note about what you learned or spoke about with them on the card so you can reference it when you write them afterwards.

  6. Share the Event Socially

    Social Media is a great tool for building and maintaining relationships. Take plenty of pics at the event to share on social media.
     
    Christine Awram of Woman of WorthDo Facebook LIVE on location. Your followers want to see where you are.  Take pictures with the speakers and other people you meet.
     
    This is me with Christine after the event was over. As you can see, wine is a big part of her brand. That and chocolate!
     
    Plus you can send these pictures to the friends you meet in your follow up.
     
    Try tagging them on social media and give them a shout out saying how nice it was to meet them.  You can attach a picture with them in a follow-up email.  This is a heartfelt way to share warmth with a new connection.

  7. Switch it Up

    Try sitting with different people at lunch.  Join groups for after workshop dinner and conversation.  Sometimes the chit-chat that occurs before and after the event can lead to the best connections.

  8. Step Up to the Mike

    If there is a Q&A opportunity, step up to the microphone and let your question be heard.  You’ll get a chance to introduce yourself to the whole room and get expert answers to your question.
     
    Often times people will come up to you afterwards and say how they related to what you shared.

  9. Give a Testimonial

    If you loved the event, be vocal about it. Tell the event coordinator and offer a testimonial.  You can also record a Facebook video testimonial and tag the event coordinator on social media.
     
    Email a written testimonial to the event host. They may post it on their website and give you massive exposure.

  10. Love ’em Up

    There is a Chinese proverb that says “A bit of fragrance clings to the hand that gives flowers.” When you get back home after the event, the most important part is following up with and nurturing relationships you made.
     
    Here it’s a strategy of quality, not quantity.  Sort through the cards you received.  Narrow them down to the few people you had a real connection with and send a warm, genuine email.
     
    Is there any further suggestion or resource you can send them as a follow-up to your conversation? You want them to experience their life is better now having met you.
     
    And don’t forget to post to your social media accounts and send an email to your list about your experience too!

Attending industry conferences or seminars keep you up-to-date with the latest changes that are occurring within the industry.  But equally valuable is the chance to meet other like-minded individuals and build connections that can last a lifetime.

What are your favourite networking tips?  Share your thoughts and experiences below.

Want to learn more about social media and the tactics you can use to help build your brand exposure?

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To your success,

P.S. If you liked what you read here, you will want to sign up for my newsletter where you’ll get notified every Tuesday of that day’s blog post. Click here to also receive our free website guide: www.UltimateWebsiteGuide.ca

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

10 Superstar Networking Tips to Grow Your BusinessClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Secrets to Networking Like a Pro

Secrets to Networking Like a Pro

In business, it’s not as important who you know, as who knows you. That’s why networking is one of the most valuable activities you can do to grow your revenues.

What type of people should you connect with? What are the best practices in networking?

Here are a few secrets for ANYONE who wants to build a powerful business network and look like a pro doing it.

When I was a Mary Kay consultant years ago, I learned a very valuable networking tip from their training: Always make the person you’re talking to feel important. So one important aspect I stress when networking is to set an intention to come from a place of care and service.

When networking, set your intention to come from a place of care and serviceClick To Tweet

We all can recall bad networking moments. The ones where we meet an over-eager individual who gives you a firm hand shake, spews everything about their business to you, then leaves their business card in your hand.

You see them repeat the same cycle to everyone else at the event. Yuck!

Or maybe you’ve had someone connect with you on LinkedIn or Twitter and they immediately send you a long message about everything they do and then ask if you want to hire them. No thanks. Delete/unfollow.

When people feel like you are trying to push something on them, they build a wall and want to run the other way.

This is the last thing you want the people you meet to do.

Instead, come from a place of wanting to genuinely help others. Make them feel special by asking them to tell you about their business first. Ask them questions that show you not only care but are also curious and interested in what they do.

Interesting people find others interesting.

The best thing you could do is have the other person walk away saying:
“Wow, what a nice person, I’d like to talk with them again!”

When you meet someone, it’s always better to ask them for their business card. You can write notes on the back to jog your memory of things they mentioned or ways you can help them.

This gives you an edge so you can follow up with them after the event. If you rely on handing them a card and expect them to contact you, sadly you may never hear back.

When you follow up with someone after an event, make an appointment to get to know each other. Invite them to coffee. I must emphasize: this is not a pitch fest where they are held captive for an hour to hear you present your infomercial! (Yes, sadly this has happened to me!)

The goal is NOT to get this person to buy from you. What’s far more valuable is finding out how you can help them by connecting with your network of people, making connections and offering tips.

Another valuable outcome of such a coffee meeting is tapping into THEIR network and seeing who they know that they could refer you to. It works both ways and becomes a win-win scenario.

Ask them to tell a little bit about themselves to show your interest. This takes the pressure off you so you can relax, listen, and find out more about them.

Remember: If you only have dollar signs in your eyes, they will sense it and will not want to build any further connection with you.

When it’s your turn, take time to connect with them personally by sharing how you got started in your business. People love a good story and that’s a great way to build rapport.

Share small things about yourself like if you have a dog, kids, or enjoy tennis. When you find commonalities between the two of you, it can bring your business relationship to a whole new level.

You never know what or who you may be connected to if you don’t share.

Let them know who you help, what you do, and how you help them. Share your business goals and lastly, tell them who are the best types of referrals.

While it’s great to build a network of potential customers, it’s also important to strategically build your network to incorporate key players in your circle.

5 Key Players to Have in Your Network

  1. Your Dream Success Person This is the guru who you worship, that has achieved what your ideal vision of success is.

    Read their books. Comment on their social media posts. Share gratitude with them about what they have taught you.

    You never know what kind of influential friends you can make just by daring to reach out and ask.

  2. The Wise One We all love having someone in our network that we can bounce ideas off of and problem solve. This may be a business colleague, long time friend, or someone you connected with in a Facebook group or mastermind.

    They seem to know all the tools, resources, and shortcuts to getting big things done fast.

  3. Centers of Influence Who is the person you know that knows everyone? Those are the best types of people to have in your network.

    They have the power to recommend and introduce you to large numbers of people.

  4. The Encourager You need someone you can be totally real with when the odds are stacked against you. This person will believe in you and help restore your confidence.
  5. The Ideal Client Having a personal connection with someone who is an ideal client can help you get inside the head of your customers.

    You’ll be more on target with the advice and programs you put together. Plus, when you write marketing material you can envision this person in your head and write the message directly to them.

This focused, heart-to-heart approach will add a powerful personal punch to your marketing.

As Harvay MacKay says it’s important to “Dig Your Well Before You Are Thirsty”.

So if you are an entrepreneur who works in a home office, I encourage you to get up, get dressed and get out the door to build your network.

Building your personal network will keep your business growing strong! Do you have any other networking tips to share?

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How to Make an Impact with Your Personal Brand at Live Events

In this eTip I explain what it takes to make yourself known when you’re at networking events by getting your personal brand to work for you.

How can personal branding help you when in a group environment?

If you watched last week’s video you saw my interview with personal branding expert Dana Smithers. Carrying that theme through today’s video will be focused on that established personal brand and how to get it working for you when you’re networking and meeting new people.

Many people don’t realize just how much of an impact their personal brand can make and this is especially true when at conferences or other large networking events when you could connect with your ideal target market.

Sometimes we forget about how we come across to others when at these events. While these events are not about networking make sure you’re aware that you have to be open to the idea of meeting potential new clients.

While at the Woman Of Worth event I saw many examples of personal branding being showcased. One author even had her hair dyed purple which caught the attention of the MC. Some showed off tattoos and other eye grabbing details while others were in comfort clothes.

The contrast between the two stood out to me. While not there to build out their client list they were showcasing their brands. Wearing a hoodie and sweatpants at an event like that conveys the message that they’re not concerned about quality. By not paying attention to their personal brand they send the message about how they run their business too and it isn’t a good message.

Make sure that you’re dressing the part when at events. Be a brand representative and remember that you’re appearance and demeanor are being judged. You could be arms length from a great lead and not even know it so dress for success in case that potential lead is looking for what you provide.

Think it through and it should make sense to you. If you have tattoos and own a tattoo parlour then it makes sense to show those off in your personal brand. If you’re a lawyer then it may be a better idea to dress conservatively and hide the body art.

Even if you’re an introvert you can bring out your personal brand in a measured, conservative way. You don’t have to change who you are but don’t use any social barriers as an excuse for missing an opportunity.

The takeaway is to showcase your unique selling position in your personal brand. At any given moment you could be face to face with your ideal client. Make sure you’re in a position to capitalize on the opportunity if it’s presented. Wear your brand colours, show off a style that helps convey your business goals, and remember to smile and enjoy yourself!

Don’t forget that if you liked what you saw here please subscribe to our Youtube channel or newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Secrets to Creating a Visual Brand Identity That Sets You Apart

Secrets to Creating a Visual Brand Identity That Sets You Apart

8 Key Areas You Want to Keep Your Visual Brand Consistent

Have you ever wondered what your social media followers think about you?

Is it possible you are sending mixed messages to your prospects?

This month we’re talking about the importance of personal branding and how it helps your business. This article ties closely in with that regarding your visual brand – essentially how you come across to others.

Over the years I have seen a lot of business owners who haven’t taken time to define their brand. They don’t understand when businesses stray from their brand, it dilutes their brand power and impact. Or worse, they have nothing about them that sets them apart.

As a result, they complain they are attracting the wrong customers or hardly getting any leads at all…

This “me too” method of marketing that mimics what competitors are doing isn’t effective. 

The 'me too' method of marketing that mimics competitors is not effective.Click To Tweet

That’s why I feel compelled to share more what a visual brand is and how to build a strong one online.

Whether you’re creating a new brand or updating your existing one, your brand’s visual identity is the most important factor in your marketing.

Your brand is so much more than a website and a logo.  It’s a user’s total experience and perception of you.

So every touchpoint a prospect has with you should have one consistent look and theme.  This includes your logo, website, stationery, social media, videos, brochures, business cards, and of course your personal brand in how you dress and present yourself to the world.

Watch: Here’s how Dana J. Smithers integrates her personal branding with her business brand.

A solid visual brand:

  • Helps people know what to expect from you.
  • Promotes professionalism and purpose.
  • Draws prospects who align with your ideas, attitudes and values.
  • Enhances confidence, trust and rapport with your followers.
  • Builds upon the existing brand experience they have with you in a positive (or a negative) way.

Visual branding adds real power to your marketing.  It increases engagement and understanding.

Visual branding adds real power to your marketing.Click To Tweet

With all these benefits to personal and professional branding, it’s more important than ever to brand your visual content and images so you stand out from competitors.

How Can You Keep Your Brand Consistent?

You write blog articles and posts every day.  You are working back and forth on projects.  How can you be certain that all the marketing you do resonates with your core brand?

Creating a style guide makes it easier to keep your marketing pieces consistent.

Firstly, ensure your brand is consistent in the following areas:

  • Headshot – Having a professional headshot goes a long way in developing brand trust.
  • Logo– your logo is the nucleus of your brand, everything else stems from that. Ensure it’s designed properly that includes the psychology of what it represents.
  • Colour Palette – Colours that will resonate with your target market and be meaningful to your brand.
  • Brand Message – This is the essence of your business that includes your slogan or tagline of who you are, what you do, and how you deliver value.
  • Fonts – Being consistent with the same one or two typefaces throughout all written materials as well as graphics
  • Design Elements – The use of borders, lines, shadows and filters should all become familiar to being associated with your visual brand.
  • Tone – Set the tone of your business presence and stick to it – whether serious, high-tech, sarcastic or soulful, this is a big part of building a solid brand presence.

For example: our eVision Media colours are purple and green.  Our typeface is: Asap.  Our logo is: a mother Emperor Penguin and her baby chick. Our slogan is “creating your brand, showcasing your business, nurturing your dream to reality” as seen here in our website header:

creating your brand, showcasing your business, nurturing your dream to reality

We have also created a template that we use for our marketing eTips and inspirational messages, so people instantly recognize them:

Visual Branding of eVision Media Social Media posts

 Create a Style Guide as Your Road Map

A style guide acts like a map that helps your team to stay on track. Sharing your style guide with key members of your team can ensure everyone knows the style guidelines and can follow them.

This is especially important for companies with virtual employees spanning in multiple geographic regions. Make it easy for your team to access your logo, fonts and templates. Always protect your brand. Double check when new marketing pieces come in that they conform to brand guidelines.

Here is a snapshot of our current style guide:

Visual Brand style guide for eVision Media

With this style guide in mind, here’s 8 areas you will want to keep your brand consistent in everything you do in your business marketing and social media efforts:

  1. Website

    Your website is the biggest brand statement your business has.  It serves as a reference to make sure all other brand elements are in alignment.

    That’s why I am so against people who use cookie-cutter template sites.  They may look polished, but they lack the warmth, connection and personality of a branded website (not to mention how badly they are built.)

    Make sure the images you use are reflective of your ideal client.  Use language that resonates with your target audience.  Create an about page that helps your visitors understand your backstory and why you are passionate and good at what you do.

    The more your website looks and feels like you, the stronger attraction tool it will be for potential clients.

  2. Professional Headshot

    Professional headshot before and after of Susan Friesen

    I was very camera shy when I first started my business.  So when it came time to get some updated headshots, I dreaded it.  But I found that going through the process brought me confidence.

    My new headshots are used as a personal and business branding tool that help me to be more recognized online.  They are on all my social media profiles and on our website.  As a result, people recognize me when I attend local networking events.

    Investing in new headshots can truly jump start your brand and success.

  3. Sharing Photos

    visual branding with Dana Smithers, Julie Salisbury and Susan FriesenSharing photos makes your marketing more personable and showcases your personal brand.  Consumers love seeing the real person behind the business.

    So be mindful of when you are working or in group situations and see how you can snap pictures to show followers what you are up to.

    Take a picture holding your new book.  Grab a shot with a new friend you met while networking.  Show the resort you are staying at for your business mastermind.

    Here’s Dana Smithers, Julie Salisbury and myself while at a recent WOW (Woman of Worth) event in Harrison Hot Springs.

  4. Video

    Creating videos helps build a strong following online.  It’s important to have your videos match your brand too.  Dress in a manner that is consistent with your brand.

    You could also shoot it in similar places or locations.  Whether that’s sitting at your desk, cooking in the kitchen, or standing in front of a green screen with a projected background, that consistent setting helps build familiarity.

    Be warm, friendly and connective.  If you promise to offer weekly video tips, then get them out on the same day each week so viewers can anticipate them. Create a custom hashtag for your video tips too – we created our eVision video eTips with the hashtag #eTip for consistency.

  5. Branded Images

    Kick up the interest of your blog articles and social media with images.  There are loads of free tools to help you make graphic quotes, infographics, and other visuals to add impact.

    Make sure all your graphic images are consistent with your brand.  Adding your logo makes it easy for people to instantly recognize the content is from you.

    For instance, the other day we re-posted an older article about “6 Steps to Nurturing A Profitable Business“.  We featured an image of an Emperor Penguin family.  It suggested the idea of nurturing but also tied into our brand with the Penguin theme.

  6. Social Media

    Social media provides so many opportunities for visual branding.  From Facebook cover images to profile pics, to graphics, there are endless opportunities for people to learn more about what you do.

    The images you use can evoke the feelings and emotions you want your brand to convey.  The goal is for someone to look at your social media account and get an impression that helps them understand your unique vibe.

  7. Free Giveaways

    When you are offering free reports, tools, and other goodies to visitors, make sure they have the same colours, logos, and visual feel as your other materials.

    eVision Ultimate Guide Report CoverWhen it looks professional and makes a great impression, it builds credibility.  Plus, it’s just one more piece of the brand puzzle that helps them understand what you do.

    For example, our free giveaway is “The Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website’s Profitability“. 

    The cover features a headshot of me for familiarity, (mind you, this is an old photo so fixing up this free report is a priority of mine.) It has our brand colour of purple and includes our logo. 

    So it looks and feels like eVision Media. If someone forwarded a copy of this to a friend, they would get an accurate sense of our brand.

  8. Email Signature

    Susan Friesen eSignatureA graphic email signature can add visual impact to every message you send.  Services like Wisestamp make it easy to add your logo, picture, and social media links to your email signature.

    We have designed many eSignatures for clients that exactly match their brand and it’s an effective way to enhance their brand with every email they send out.

    Have your virtual team members set up a signature too so you come across as a professional team to your customers.

Are You a Wanna Be or a Real Brand?

It’s really important to take a look at your brand as a whole to make sure everything is in alignment.

Is your visual brand:

  • Clear,
  • consistent,
  • authentic,
  • memorable, and
  • in alignment with changes in the marketplace, your offerings, or your success

Even if your brand was on target 3 years ago, the nature of your business may have changed where your brand no longer accurately reflects what you do or who you serve.

You have become more specialized.  You may have new product offerings.  Maybe you are now the host of a new podcast.

Take a look at your brand with the eyes of an outsider and ask yourself if what you see truly reflect who you are now as a company.

How Does Your Business Score from a Visual Branding Perspective?

At eVision Media, we are experts at building, managing and marketing Brands online. If you need help developing your visual brand or just need some direction, contact us today. Our team of creative marketing professionals can help keep your brand on the path to success.

To your ongoing success,
Susan Friesen

P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

Secrets to Creating a Visual Brand Identity That Sets You ApartClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

7 Crucial Elements to Building an Effective Personal Brand

7 Crucial Elements to Building an Effective Personal Brand

How to Gain More Income, Influence and Impact Through Building a Personal Brand

It used to be that if you had a logo and a website you had a business brand.  But today’s consumers demand a lot more.  Branding for them is about the experience of being with you, the owner of that business.

Today businesses have to look a lot deeper when it comes to creating a personal brand that is in harmony with their business brand.

When you have a strong personal brand, you become a mini-celebrity in your field. With that strong brand comes clout and credibility. People look up to you.

When you have a strong personal brand, you become a mini-celebrity in your field.Click To Tweet

When people think of your industry, you’ll be the first one to come to mind. It also gives your offerings a higher perceived value – suddenly you can charge what you are worth to clients who are happy to pay.

If you want to build a dynamic and effective personal brand that will help grow your business but don’t know where to start, let’s break it down…

7 Key Elements of a Personal Brand that is Infused with Your Business Brand

  1. Embracing Consistency

    When prospects know what to expect of you it creates a feeling of familiarity and trust.  That’s why consistency of everything you do and how you present yourself is so important.
     
    But many business owners go willy-nilly with their brand, not paying attention to colours, fonts, graphics or style of messaging that all makes up a personal and business brand.  This can be confusing for your audience.  Your brand should be developed with consistency and standards that reflect well on how you want your business to be perceived.
     
    For instance, take colours – one way to be consistent with your business brand on a personal level is to wear similar colours to your visual brand. For many years, Mari Smith wore her signature turquoise blue wherever she went, which was a match to her business brand.  She has since changed this strategy, but it was very effective in her brand positioning while she was building her leadership presence.
     
    Dana J. Smithers, one of our long-time clients is another one who fully embraces her brand messaging by consistently wearing only her business brand colours: Black, red and white. (Stay tuned for an upcoming eTip where I interview her on this subject.)
     
    Consistency is king when it comes to branding.  Aside from your personal appearance, other things you do also affect your personal brand. For instance, if you say you provide a weekly newsletter, you need to honour that commitment and make sure a newsletter goes out every week.  If you post twice a day on Facebook, keep up that frequency.
     
    That kind of consistency will win over the trust of your followers, which will make them more likely to make a purchase when they are in need of your product or services.

  2. Forming a Compelling Story

    Your story is the single biggest differentiator for your business.  Make your story be a part of your personal brand. (Read my story here or a fuller version on a book I’m a co-author of: Entrepreneurial Spirit Sauce.)
     
    Hundreds of people may sell what you have, but you are the only one who is exactly like you.
     
    Your followers yearn to know who you are, how you got to where you are at and why you love what you do.  Think of it as your Cinderella rags to riches story.  It allows people to see how you came from no-where, learned the lesson, and came out on top.
     
    Connecting to your story gives followers that feel good, heart-to-heart connection with you.  Once you craft your story you can add it on your about page, your bio, in presentations, your book, and more!

  3. Owning Authenticity

    When you share from your heart you inspire and connect with people on a deeper level.
     
    Share the real you.  Let them see your values.  Talk about what you stand for.  Give them a peek behind the scenes so they feel included.

  4. Being Visible and Accessible

    Out of sight means out of mind. There are many ways you can showcase your personal brand by becoming more visible in front of your target market. Here’s just a few ideas:

    • Have a networking meetings.
    • Get featured in the media.
    • Be a podcast or telesummit guest.
    • Show photos of events you attend and the people you meet on Social Media.
    • Hold webinars and Facebook Live Q&A sessions with your followers.
    • newsletters so you are unforgettable.
  5. Creating a Value Proposition

    This is such an important brand element but sadly most businesses do not have a clear value proposition statement.
     
    A value proposition is a clear declaration that explains who you serve, how you serve them, and why your solution is better.
     
    A good one is clear, specific and easily understood.  When you can articulate this in a compelling way, it’s a powerful client attraction

  6. Defining a Focused Ideal Client

    Many businesses aren’t clear about their ideal customer.  They cast their net too wide when it comes to customers.
     
    Once you clearly identify who is in your tribe, it not only supercharges your marketing messages but also helps you better understand how to present yourself in front of them in order to win them over.

  7. Showcasing Your Expertise

    Personal branding also means being the best and most knowledgeable at what you do.  Don’t just be a follower of other top experts, instead lead the industry with your perspectives, findings and views.
     
    Create studies to publish new results.  Develop your own signature system.  Craft terms that become the coined phrase for the industry.
     
    The more you differentiate yourself from others in your industry the more you will become the go-to expert people will be drawn to.

Want to Stand Out and Get Noticed?

At eVision Media we understand what it takes to succeed online.  We do more than help you look good online through a business brand design; we go to the core of what makes you unique and communicate it with a personal brand that defines you.

Find out more today about our website design, branding, and online marketing services or talk to me about my mentoring options where I’ll help you define your personal brand.

To your ongoing success,
Susan Friesen

P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

7 Crucial Elements to Building an Effective Personal BrandClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Combining Online and Offline Marketing to Build Business Credibility

How to earn new clients for your small business with these brand-boosting suggestions

Combining Online and Offline Marketing to Build Business Credibility

I hope you enjoyed our recent series of articles and videos focused on what you can do to build your client roster for your business.

New clients are essential to the success of any business so make sure you keep up consistent efforts to draw in new leads you can then turn into paying clients. 

Clients are essential to business success. Consistent efforts help convert leads into clientsClick To Tweet

To quickly recap:

Proper planning

Have you taken the steps to define your ideal client yet? It’s important to have a plan before setting off on a journey.

Ideal clients are just that: ideal. The more of them you have, the less stress you have in keeping any toxic clients who may be more trouble than they’re worth.

Make your presence known

Content marketing, email marketing, and social media marketing all work together when planned properly. Before you start any guess work at how to go about marketing your business online remember our tips on the value of planning it all out right and hiring a professional to get it done properly.

This article talked about the value of organic and paid marketing to drive website traffic in droves and the cost of messy DIY attempts at online marketing.

The importance of referrals

Referral business is a great way to generate leads. The leads are better and the fact that you’re coming by way of a reference goes a long way to securing the client.

We looked at 4 ways to earn referrals so that you can feel more comfortable when approaching existing contacts for referrals.

Offline Marketing is Still Essential

A lot of what we focus on at eVision Media is specific to online efforts. That is essentially because we specialize in professional website development, social media marketing, and search engine optimization.

Your business success can rely on not only online marketing strategies and tactics, but also offline efforts. So remember to keep up some hard and true staples to keep the leads coming in.

Here’s some suggestions to infuse into your overall marketing pie:

  • Event or Tradeshow Sponsorship

    Sponsoring an event or a tradeshow is a great way to get your business in front of key decision makers within your industry or business sector. Our success with the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce in 2016 was not only great for getting our name in front of local businesses over having won a Business Excellence award but the sponsor of our award, Blackwood Building Centre Ltd., also received a lot of recognition.

  • Contests Offering Merchandise

    Holding a contest is a great way get word out about your business. Watch out for serial contest entrants (yes people have side jobs entering contests all day) and take the construct of the contest seriously. Look for loopholes that could be exploited and carefully plan your contest so it targets your ideal clients.
     
    Offering free samples or credit as a reward is great when you focus on those who need what you have or do. You may get less entries but it’s better to get 10 qualified entries than 1000 entries from people who are really only after a freebie.

  • Radio Advertising

    Radio ads are still a good tool especially if you deal locally. Many stations are eager to support local businesses so try reaching out to your local radio stations. The cost might be a lot better than you expect!

  • Newspaper Mentions

    These are great for getting eyes on your business. It’s even better if the newspaper has an online equivalent that publishes the article.
     
    If you are able to get your name in a newspaper editorial and the author is willing to link to your site, then you’re not only getting some amazing exposure but because of the link, you are also telling Google that your website has more value.
     
    Journalists have trust placed in them by their readers so if you can get someone to feature your business in an article you should definitely do it.
     
    *Bonus Pro Tip – if you have key phrases drafted and website pages with them sending the right on-site ranking signals, then try asking the article author to link to your business with an actual term you’re trying to rank for.

  • Networking

    Never underestimate the power of good networking for your business. Getting yourself out there at events, trade shows, or anywhere else you can find your target audience is a great idea.
     
    Not all events cost money and even if you don’t make a connection you can still have a good time!

Some other quick ideas to boost your brand exposure include:

  • Sending postcards to past or prospective clients
  • Posting flyers, sending mailers or distributing door hangers
  • Goodie bag and door donations at events where your target market will be in attendance
  • Merchandizing
  • Volunteering
  • Even get your car wrapped with your brand messaging!

These methods are good on their own and together they result in you building your credibility and getting more exposure in front of your ideal target market.

The value of credibility is immeasurable for business success and the cost of not having any clients know, like, or trust you is equivalently high.

Understandably, a lot of these tips seem great but are often tough to execute. If you’re having trouble building your client base or simply want some more help on any of the topics covered here, please get in touch.

We don’t give away all this advice for free without reason. At eVision Media we are always looking for great people to work with and when you review our posts, remember that before we started them we defined our ideal client hoping to find you, so we can work together towards your business goals and overall success.

To your ongoing success,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you needing guidance on how to define your niche market and how to position yourself in your industry? Having a mentor to help you through this process can save you time and costly mistakes.

› CONTACT US TODAY

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

Combining Online and Offline Marketing to Build Business CredibilityClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How to Avoid Turning Off Potential Clients

Today’s eTip is about how to avoid turning off potential new clients.

First impressions

Did you know it only takes 5 seconds for a website user to form an opinion of both you and your business?

In those 5 seconds they have judged whether or not they want to get to know you, whether to like you, and should they trust you. Those three components are essential to drawing in your ideal clients and making a connection.

This can all happen whenever anything you do as a business (or a person associated with your business) so it’s important to remember that your online presence can be judged based on more than just a blog post or retweet.

Is your social media too anti social?

Take a look at what you post and what you share.

Are your posts consistently negative or are they more positive?

Are you ranting and raving or are you offering solutions to problems?

All of your posts make an impression and say something about you to your possible new lead(s).

Is your personal presence professional for in person networking? How about your website? Does it say ‘professional’ or does it look home made?

Look at all aspects of your presence online and off and make sure you’re conveying a positive message if you want to attract your ideal clients.

You want all of your branding from your website to your social media and beyond to send a message to potential clients that you will be great to work with.

Keep track of it all and take a moment to asses whether or not all your materials are aligned in design and message and that they properly represent who you are and what you do. If you need any help with any of this please get in touch with me and my team and we’d be delighted to help.

The overall message here to make sure your personal and professional brand makes a positive statement so potential clients get a good idea of who you are, what you do, and why they should hire you/ buy from you.

If you have any questions about finding your ideal client please comment below and if you liked what you saw here please subscribe to our YouTube channel or newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY
 

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Time Management Tips for the Busy Business Owner

Earlier this year, I had a quick conversation with friend and client Yvonne Hogenes while at the WOW (women of worth) Conference in Vernon.

Yvonne is a very busy business owner who provided some great tips on time management.

 

Yvonne wears many hats and wasting time is not an option for her.

20 years ago Yvonne opened Malarys Fashion Networking Cloverdale.

She’s thoroughly enjoyed evolving her business as the industry grew.

For 15 years now she has designed custom fitted bras she then has manufactured and distributed all throughout Canada and the US!

Then 7 years ago she began her journey in making smart, shape tech/apparel with Firma Energywear.

This product is sold in Canada and all over the US.

So how does she do it?

Not alone.

She has an amazing family business with her husband and two sons supporting her.

Get over thinking no one can do the work as good as you can.Click To Tweet

Her team is important and then comes delegation.

Yvonne has learned to offer autonomy and trusts those she delegates to.

She has learned the hard way that balance is important since she has burnt out multiple times. Some quick tips she shared were:

  • Learn to say no!
  • Learn to filter out what is important from what isn’t.
  • Hire your weaknesses to offset what you’re good at with what you’re not.
  • When in control mode you’re not doing anyone any service.
  • Get over thinking that no one can do it as good as you can.

Yvonne agrees the key to balance is to let go at times and trust.

I want to really thank Yvonne for sharing her insights with me (and you) and if you’re looking to get a hold of Yvonne the easiest way to find her is at Malarys.com

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.
>> CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

Time Management Tips for the Busy Business OwnerClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

A Beginner’s Guide to Twitter Fundamentals

Your social media presence is a reflection of your business and often the first thing a potential new client sees.

Today’s post and video look at the importance of including a consistent brand image on Twitter that presents who you are and what you do appropriately.

Clients who see a lot of professionalism in your social media are more likely to contact you if you establish yourself properly online.

Twitter is a great way to reach out to peers too and as we saw in our last post can lead to new work through proper usage and networking so make sure your profile really represents you and your business properly.

The Header Image

Your header image is a 1500px by 500px opportunity to grab a user with your most important offering.
Whether you announce your service, a discount, or present some stats that make you unique from your competitors you have the space to do it so by all means use it.

If you are promoting a splash page with a discount code you can try including that into the header. Text won’t be clickable but you can repeat the link in your bio or feature it in a pinned Tweet (this is a single tweet that when ‘pinned’ will remain at the top of your profile) which will allow the user to click on it.

Combine practicality with creativity so you’re selling yourself but also showing off something visually appealing.

Your Profile Image

A profile image is a small avatar/icon that shows you. Large brands will often use their logo for this which makes sense for them but for small business owners who are the face of the business a great headshot here is advisable.

Having a headshot is even more important if your handle or business name either is your name or includes it.
The ideal size for your twitter profile photo is 400px X 400px.

Many Twitter users have responded they often remember headshots over handles when looking at accounts so you really want to make sure this is an image of yourself you want people to remember.

The more professional your image is the better and it’s always better to smile when you’re hoping to make more connections.

Your Description

This is a short character limited biography section that only allows for 160 alpha numeric characters.
Use this space to note your core offering as well as introduce yourself to your audience. This is your opportunity to say hello but also establish why you have the account. So mention that you provide Service A but also let them know about your interests, say in mountain biking or like me, chocolate!

Be professional and friendly so you exude professional confidence but retain your personality too.
Your Tweets

Now that your profile is set up it’s time to start tweeting! It’s important to seed out tweets that introduce yourself and are consistent in brand and theme with the profile.

You want to do this before you start following other people so they can see you have an active account and won’t appear abandoned.

Set yourself a manageable pace and don’t treat this as a one off. It can be a long, arduous process at first but once you start seeing engagement and building your community you’ll then be more inclined to keep it up.
You can use scheduling services like Hootsuite or Twitter’s own Tweetdeck though there are many. It will depend on which you prefer and by adopting one you can relegate your Twitter time to once a week if that suits your schedule better.

Consistency is the key to retaining and maintaining an audience.Keep it up and in no time you’ll be enjoying yourself and enhancing your business presence while building the know, like and trust factor with your followers.

If you have a Twitter account already please share it in the comments section below or follow me and let me know. If you don’t use Twitter let me know why and maybe we can work your reasoning into a future video.

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

Social Blast for Entrepreneurs

What If You Could Learn Social Media and Online Marketing Each Month With Ease?

If you are new to Social Media and online marketing or find it overwhelming and confusing, my monthly group coaching program, Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs is a perfect way for you to incrementally learn the best strategies and tactics to help you grow your business online.

  • Uncover what it takes to execute a successful, revenue-driving social media strategy
  • Learn how to build relationships, trust, and brand awareness with your ideal customer
  • Discover actionable strategies to engage followers online
  • Master creating compelling content that’s always on target
  • Discern how to authentically differentiate your brand in a crowded marketplace
  • Find out the best times to post for higher readership
  • Stay abreast with the latest prospecting techniques to grow your list, groups and more…
  • Learn ways to engage through social media monitoring and listening

It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.

› CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".