Thursday, July 26, 2012

Is Your Sales Message A "Seductive Samantha", Or An "Obnoxious Olivia"?

Picture if you will, a gathering full of attractive singles. The atmosphere at the gathering is just right, and people are sitting on the couch, standing in various corners of the room, or they are mingling outside on the back patio. Some people might be standing on the front porch. You get the idea.

You enter the gathering and after fixing yourself a drink, you have a seat on the couch. Before you work up the nerve to approach someone to start a conversation, you start to scan the room, in order to check out any possibilities with potential. As you start to look around, your eyes become glued upon a woman who has taken up temporary "residence" at the dry bar.

This woman has to be the most fascinating woman that you've laid eyes on in a long time. What makes her so fascinating, so alluring, SO ATTRACTIVE, is in the way that she doesn't have to try to be attractive. She seems to effortlessly attract men like bees to honey. She's not wearing the most flashy or trendy ensemble. Her hair is pulled back off of her face. She's not circulating around the room. Yet, something about her drives her admirers crazy with fascination! Therefore, they engage.

While you're watching this scene entranced from the couch, your line of vision suddenly becomes blocked by the sight of a woman wearing a neon pink, button-down halter top. She plunks herself down on the couch next to you, hip to hip. She leans extremely close to your face, announces that her name is Olivia, and she forcefully leans in to take a hug from you! You stammer in shock, and mumble something to the effect of "Nice to meet you", although you're still trying to decide whether meeting Olivia is truly a nice thing!

Olivia sticks a business card with her phone number down the front of your shirt, and demands that you call her. Then, she starts to work the room, following one guy, laughing too loudly for another. It's very obvious that Olivia has made it her mission in life to let every single guy in the room know she's available for engagement. She doesn't care how she gets her message across, as long as she's getting her message across.

Obviously, I'm using an analogy of two ladies at a gathering, in order to illustrate the importance of using the right type of customer engagement strategies. "Samantha" wasn't as forceful or as demanding as "Olivia", but she was definitely more attractive. "Samantha" was very confident and comfortable in her own skin. She understood what would work for her, in order to be viewed as attractive. On the other hand, she wasn't cold or aloof; She was warm, considerate, and appealing.  "Olivia" in this analogy was obnoxious and forceful, because she was insecure, and lacking in social skills. She also lacked general respect for the people she reached out to.

Ask yourself how you'd like to be perceived by your online site visitors, and by your current customers. Is your online message attractive, considerate, warm, alluring and inviting? Or, is it a forceful, cold, aloof, boring turn-off? Is your online business message a "Samantha", or an "Olivia"?

Did You Go To Your Last Event With Your Figurative Shirtails Showing?

You might be wondering why I chose such an interesting title to my post, or why it would concern me if you were properly dressed when you went to you last event. What does the way that you were dressed for a party have to do with a blog about freelance writing?

After reading the book Giving The Bird, The Indie Author's Guide To Twitter, by Benjamin Wallace, I realized that this post title has everything to do with your online marketing strategy. Allow for me to explain. Getting right to the point, the author makes an analogy in his book, that hanging out on Twitter is akin to going to a party. If you've ever attended a party or an event, then you know that they can be a bit anxiety producing. The thing that most people worry about most, is how they will present themselves at the party. They worry about what they will say, and if anyone will care about what they have to say.

If a business person is planning on attending a networking function, their stress level increases. After all, one's presentation at a networking event can make or break their financial future, in some cases. This  is why it's not uncommon for people going to parties or to important functions to make faux pas, such as wearing mixed colored socks, forgetting a watch, wearing different pairs of shoes, or leaving their shirttails hanging out of their pants!

In other words, business people sometimes place such an emphasis upon showing up at an event, they forget to properly prepare for the event. The same is true for Twitter engagement. Many businesses are so focused upon "Joining the conversation!", they forget to prepare their conversation points. Some business entities have no clue as to what they'll say when they set up a Twitter account. And no, "Click This Link!" isn't a conversation starter, or much of a conversation at all.

If you are a business owner or a manager of a business entity, then please understand that your Twitter feed holds so much potential for your business and your brand. However, you've got to be willing to TRULY ENGAGE. Setting up a Twitter account isn't engagement. Slapping up a redirect link isn't engagement. True engagement entails having a real conversation with your followers and customers. Engagement is vulnerability with your Twitter feed readers. Engagement is acknowledging your Twitter feed readers with more than just an order to click your links, or a call-to-action to purchase your products!

If you are at a loss of words, or if you simply can't find another moment in your day to engage, then allow me to "attend the party" on your behalf. I'm an excellent conversationalist, and I promise to ensure that your Twitter feed readers will want to get to know you better!