Monday, August 20, 2012

Online Personality. Is That YOU? 19/101 Marketing Secrets

Will Your Client Get What They Expect When They Meet You in Person?

Earlier we talked about how your business should project a personality, and that for the greatest success, the personality you project should be yours, the owner.  To a large extent I have seen that the more immediate the environment, the more of the owner is visible.  So in a retail store, the quality of the ambiance, the cleanliness, the type of employees, and the product selection are likely to be relatively close to the owner's personality.  Not necessarily on purpose, but more by happenstance. 

The further away from that immediacy we travel, the less of the personality shines through.  So, the print advertising, mailers, trade show look, etc., are more likely to evidence the personality of the designer of the ad, mailing piece, or booth.  This is most notably true when it comes to website media, including the company website.  Since most owners are not going to design the website themselves, and may or may not get heavily involved in the design stage, the "look" is left largely to the designer or employee who is in charge.

The result is that we may see a high tech website that has nothing to do with the low tech retail experience.  We may see a flashy, modern website for a company that is staid and traditional.  Some are wondering why this matters.  Your potential client is going to get a first impression from your online media.  They are going to expect that experience to continue when the interact with you or your company in the real world.  If there is a disconnect, there will often be a failure to close the deal. 

For instance, there is a service company in my city that spends tons of money on radio ads.  These ads would cause you to think of them as friendly, fun loving, and great to deal with. A few minutes of checking out their Yelp and Google Places reviews present a picture of a company that is more likely to rip you off that make you smile.

The important take away here is that the impression you make online through your website, YouTube videos, Facebook, etc., should present that authentic you, and provide the client with an experience online like that which they will see in person. 

Action steps for day 19:
  1.  Consider the personality of the business. Is it a reflection of the owner?
  2. Decide if the current personality is the one you want to continue to project
  3. Be careful. As noted previously, it is easier to be authentic and reflect the owner than to try and have the business be something that the owner is not.
  4. How should the personality be extended to the business environment, the way the phone is answered, the advertising and online presence, the trade show booth, etc.
  5. Begin to make over those elements that might give the wrong impression

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