Consistency Yields More Followers on Facebook

If you want to build an audience of loyal followers on any social media platform, consistency must be a part of your posting strategy. How many times a day you post is your choice and some quick market research will tell you when your target audience is most likely to be online but the key to success is to post almost every single day.

I’m sure you’ve seen Facebook Business Pages that just seem to gather dust because the owner got overwhelmed or too busy managing other parts of their business to keep up with posting interesting and engaging items on their page. Even if they are the biggest and brightest expert in their field, having a social media profile that lacks information will lead prospects to question why they aren’t more active.

Planning Your Social Media Posts

Instead of staring blankly at your empty Business Page, take out a calendar instead – or create a color-coded Google Calendar – and mark down weekly themes or seasonal holidays so you have an idea every month what you’ll post about. What will make your followers engage with your posts? What information do they need during the week? What will make them loyal followers? A mixture of educational, inspirational, and entertaining posts will mix it up for them but also don’t be afraid to tout your products or services. Don’t rely on subtle hints; tell your audience in your loud outdoor voice exactly what you have to offer.

Stay Sane and Use the Facebook Scheduling Feature

Instead of sitting down every day to write your posts, become friends with the scheduling feature that’s now available on Facebook Business Pages. Now you can block off some time and schedule a week’s worth of posts by simply choosing what day and time they should magically appear. There’s still work involved with the writing and finding a photo to accompany your posts but by dedicating a block of time each week and referencing your calendar for themed ideas, social media posting will become much more enjoyable.

If you want to cross promote your business across multiple platforms, try using third-party scheduling software such as HootSuite or Meet Edgar. You can manage all your social profiles in one place as well as schedule all your posts. To avoid being labeled a “spammer,” switch up the words in each post while keeping the same overall theme. Think about how much more enjoyable your vacations will be when you can schedule social media posts before you even leave your home.

Free Up More Time: Hire a Social Media Manager

I know it’s hard to give up control of business tasks but if you really want to grow your social following, it’s time to hire a social media manager. The benefits are plentiful: you eliminate stress by delegating to an expert; social media managers can offer posting strategies for growing your audience; you can now focus on money-making tasks. Not only will social media managers strategize with you, they can take over the actual content creation as well as engage with your followers. Of course, you personally need to also interact with your audience but your manager can help while you’re working on your book or preparing your next presentation.

If your budget right now doesn’t allow outsourcing, don’t despair. Plan your posts, schedule them according to plan, and remember to engage with anyone who comments or asks questions.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Increase Your Sales and Name Recognition with Facebook Ads

Social media is an easy way to interact with your audience and to grow your following but sometimes it can seem like a tedious process. If you want to take control and try to speed up the rate at which you obtain leads or make sales, try using Facebook Ads to increase your reach.

Facebook Ads are created in the Ad Manager and you’ll need to know the demographics of your target market as well as how much you want to spend and how long you want the ad to run. But first, Facebook wants you to identify your ad objective and you have about 12 options to choose from.

Next is setting up the ad. Choose the Facebook Page you want to promote and then choose the demographics. If you look at the gauge in the right margin, you’ll see a Potential Reach number that probably is in the millions. Who wouldn’t want millions of new leads, right? Don’t be fooled. Of those millions of names, how many would actually be QUALIFIED leads? Do you think you’ll make many sales from a million names if they can’t afford your products? Knowing your target market demographics will whittle down the potential numbers but they will more accurately match your market’s qualifying traits.

How to Target Fans of OTHER Facebook Pages

Yes, this is really a thing! And no, you’re not stealing audience members from other brands; you’re merely introducing yourself to those followers in hopes of winning them over to your brand.

After you enter your own demographic information, click on the Interests field and start to enter the name of the Facebook Page you want to target. If the page has enough fans, it will likely show up in the dropdown box as a match. If a match doesn’t come up as you type in a page name, it’s not available to be targeted.

When it comes to setting a budget, you can start as low as $1 per day but as with anything, you get what you pay for. Smaller budgets will reach fewer people; running an ad for fewer days will also reach fewer people. So determine how much you can realistically afford on this campaign then decide how many days the ad should run.

Tips to Designing an Effective Facebook Ad

We all know that Facebook has many, many rules about everything on their platform and how to design an ad is no exception. Your ad should have a pleasing photograph but you are limited to how much text you have as an overlay. Their magic number is less than 20% text on your actual graphic because they say these ads perform better. This 20% rule does NOT include the body text of your ad (which appears above your graphic). Exceptions to the 20% rule are book covers, album covers, etc. which already have text printed on them.

Always be sure you have the rights to use the photo! Your best bet is to use your own photo or a stock image that you have purchased. Grabbing images from Google Images is not proper and very well could be a copyright infringement.

If you’re looking to collect new leads or sell your newest product, running a Facebook Ad campaign can be a worthwhile investment. Be clear on who your market is and simply follow the steps as Facebook has laid them out. Once your ad is running, log in to your Ad Manager to analyze the performance results.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvc.com

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Be Social on Facebook, Reach Out and Make Friends

So many business owners forget about the “social” part of social media. A huge component of what makes social media work for you is actually being social. It’s simply not enough to create your personal profile and business page and then disappear, waiting for people to find you and buy from you.

While that sounds like a lovely idea, it just doesn’t work because marketing is about building relationships. And what do good, strong relationships have in common? Communication and interaction between the two parties. You sitting back and waiting for others to do the work is quite the opposite of communicating and interacting.

Plan Daily Posts

Consistency is key to growing a social media audience and that means daily posts on your personal profile, business page, and in your prospect group if you have one. These posts should all be written differently to avoid getting labeled by Facebook as a “spammer” but they can certainly have the same theme or message.

Think About Your Target Market

Who is your ideal client? What time do they visit Facebook, during the day or evening? Do they belong to any particular groups? Think about that special client avatar – your ideal client – and plan your postings accordingly. What does she/he really need help with? Do you have advice that can help her/him? Understanding her/his needs will aid you in reaching her/him directly.

Leave Comments to Start a Conversation

Instead of just “liking” a post on someone’s page, try leaving a comment or asking a question to start a conversation. This can occur in a group, page, or personal profile. Be authentic when choosing your words and if a conversation ensues, consider sending a Friend Request.

Pay Attention to Who Leaves Comments and Likes Your Posts

When someone leaves a comment or likes one of your posts, click into their personal profile and determine if this person is a part of your target audience. If so, consider sending a Friend Request or following them.

Share Some Free Advice

This is especially true in groups when other members ask a question or need help solving a problem. If you know the answer, give it freely instead of adding a link to your product (check the group rules first). You don’t’ have to give away all your trade secrets but this is a simple way to show others in the group that you know what you’re talking about and you care about helping others.

Plan an Online Event and Encourage Others to Share with a Friend

Video is HOT when it comes to reaching your audience and developing a relationship quickly so take advantage of using Facebook Live. Plan out what you want to talk about (consider an overview of your business; or a sneak peek at your book or signature class; or the Top 10 reasons why they need you). Create some buzz and let your followers know the day and time of the Live event and encourage them to share the day/time with their friends. In this scenario, your video should offer useful tips or information for your target market. If they like what they hear and they are attracted to your style of presenting, they will quickly become followers.

Be creative when it comes to finding new followers on Facebook and remember to nurture the relationship with these new friends.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvc.com

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Don’t Sit in the Shadows – Tell Your Message to the World 

When was the last time you actually talked about your business and what you do for people on Facebook? Do the followers of your personal profile have any idea what you do for a living? Or are you on Facebook keeping up with college buddies and parent friends from your kids’ school?

I know you know this but it bears repeating: If you don’t toot your own horn once in a while, nobody else will do it for you. Don’t sit back and wait for people to find you. Be proactive and step out from behind your computer and TELL people what your business is all about.

True, you don’t want every single post to be self-promotion because that definitely gets old and could turn followers away from you. Instead, develop a social media plan so your posts are a good balance between personal, business, and fun.

Facebook allows at least three different ways to reach your audience and if you’re on Facebook for business, you should utilize all three because not everyone will see every single post you publish. Using three different avenues raises your odds that the people in your target market will see something of interest.

Optimize Your Personal Profile

Prospective clients will check out your profile on a daily basis if you do a good job of posting consistently and reaching out to others as friends. So, in order to grab their attention, be sure you fill out ALL the space on your personal profile page as completely as possible.

  • Add a bio – describe to your followers what makes you tick and how you’re unique
  • Add featured photos – a nice, visual way to grab attention with photos from conferences, workshops, speaking engagements, etc.
  • Add your workplace information – link to your website, Facebook Group, and Facebook Business Page
  • Link other social media profiles – under the About >> Contact & Basic Info section

Even though your personal profile is meant for personal stuff, you can certainly announce the launch of your book, post photos of your recent trip to a mastermind retreat, or talk about the convention you attended and met your favorite mentor. While these are business-related, you’re not purposefully promoting your business via your personal profile.

Create a Business Page on Facebook

The standard rule of Facebook is you use a business page to promote your business while your personal profile is meant for personal communication. So, to stay in good standing with Facebook, create that business page and optimize it in the same manner as you did your personal profile.

Business pages have come under fire recently because users complain that they never see page posts in their news feeds, even though they have liked the page. While this is aggravating, don’t give up yet. If for nothing else, you can add your website link and other contact information here and, since it’s a business page, you can talk about your business and promote your products every single day, even multiple times a day, without penalty. You can also run contests from your business page as well as add an opt-in offer to one of the tabs. Consider this a quick overview of your business where your followers can decide if they want to move forward with a consultation. Put a “Send Message” button on your business page to make that appointment booking even easier.

Use Facebook Groups to Woo Prospects

Facebook groups can be another great resource to chat directly with prospective clients. Public groups are a good way to handle customer service questions. Closed or Secret groups are best used for specialty discussion topics, or memberships. Keep in mind that successful groups need daily interaction from their host so they don’t forget about you but that’s easy to add to your overall Facebook marketing plan.

Remember this important note: finding clients is all about building relationships and that doesn’t happen overnight. Talk about your business, showcase your expertise, reach out to your followers, and when the time is right, they will remember your name because you dared to talk about what you do.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Spread Your Name Recognition with Boosted Posts on Facebook

While you’re putting in the time to grow your network on Facebook, there’s one more avenue you can use to reach a larger audience: boost your posts. Quite simply, this is a form of advertising which costs money but it’s a quick and more passive way to reach more people in a short amount of time.

Isn’t Posting Daily on Facebook Enough?

This answer depends on your end goal for your business. Posting and interacting daily will definitely grow your followers but if you want a quick jumpstart add in a boosted post and examine the results.

One friend recently boosted a post for a total of $30 and it brought in $202 in sales. It was a “set it and forget it” process and she set a monetary limit so as not to break the bank but she was very pleased with that result; so much so that she’s boosting the same post again.

Why Should I Boost a Post?

No doubt you’ve noticed lots of changes with the Facebook algorithms lately and you’ve probably heard lots of people complaining about those changes. Business page organic reach has declined drastically so you can’t depend on Facebook algorithms to get your posts seen, even if people have liked your page. So, instead of taking a passive, “I hope you see my posts” stance, let’s be proactive and boost a post to bypass the questionable organic reach of your basic post.

Boosted posts also allow you to highly target your viewers, so you are in complete control of the demographics (again, a highly proactive approach). You can set a certain geographic area as your target or a specific age range. If you have thought carefully about your target market demographics, this step will be easy to complete.

Speaking of control: you are in control of how much you spend on this boosted post as well as the length of the campaign. Theoretically, you could run a campaign for $1 per day (the daily minimum allowed) but if you spend more money each day, you will reach a larger number of people.

How to Create a Boosted Post

Most importantly: you can only boost a post from a Business Page, so if you don’t have one set up yet, get that done.

Step 1: Choose which Post to Boost

This can be a current post or you can write a brand new post. If you’ve been active on your page, you will even see recommendations for which posts to boost. The choice is yours, just think about the purpose of your boosted post, then choose the most appropriate post for your goal.

Step 2: Choose Your Target Audience

If you want to grow your name recognition, select your own demographics, geographic area, and/or age range. You can even create multiple audiences with different demographics by clicking on the “Create New Audience” link.

Step 3: Choose Your Budget and Campaign Duration

How much can you afford to spend each day your campaign runs? How many days do you want the boost to run? You will see Facebook’s estimated reach climb as your budget amount increases. This is still an estimate so make this decision based on what you can actually afford as opposed to the number of people who might pay attention to your boosted post.

Step 4: Setup Your Payment, Hit the Boost Button, then Analyze the Results

Seeing the results of your boost is exciting because Facebook offers easy-to-understand insights for every boosted post. You will see your actual reach as well as how many clicks your post received. From there you can determine if you received any sales directly from this post or if you noticed an increase in friend requests during this time frame.

Luckily Facebook has made boosting a post very simple so once you go through it, it’s much easier to understand. And once you set all the details, you can go about your day while your boosted post works its magic to bring you more target audience members.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Be Confident in Your Business and Always Ask for the Sale

Let’s state the obvious: you’re in business to earn money. Yes, you want to help others as well, but you want to make a profit with your business, am I right?

In order to make a profit, you need to sell your products and services. But is it enough to just create products and wait for people to make a purchase? Not at all. I like to call that “wishful marketing” and it simply doesn’t work.

That’s a very passive approach to running a business as opposed to a proactive approach, which includes finding people in your target market, forming a relationship with them, introducing them to your business, and then asking for the sale.

Find Your Confidence

It sure is discouraging when people say “no” when you ask for a meeting or for the sale but there’s also a popular thought in the sales community that you need to hear 100 no’s before you hear a yes. Your business and your services won’t appeal to everyone; or they might appeal to someone who doesn’t have the money to spend right now. That doesn’t mean your business idea is awful; it simply means you haven’t found the right people yet.

If you have put careful thought into what you want to offer your target audience and you have created packages and/or services to meet those needs, be confident in telling people who you serve and how you do so.

  • Create introductory posts on Facebook – on your personal profile and business page – and give a short summary of who you are and what you do.
  • Spell out exactly who you’re seeking as your target market; think of those web pages you’ve seen with the specific title, “Who Should Work With Me.”
  • Create a Facebook Live series where you answer frequently asked questions as they relate specifically to your business.
  • Find a podcast or other interview opportunity where you can share your expertise with a larger/different audience. Interview scenarios often put people at ease because you’re having a simple conversation.

When the Time is Right, Ask for the Sale

Your customers will purchase from you when they know, like, and trust you, so coming on strong with heavy sales talk or pestering them like a used car salesperson will chase those promising customers away.

Instead, gently nudge these prospects down your sales funnel. If you have never heard of a sales funnel, it’s simply a visual representation of how you’ll guide prospects toward your higher-priced products. In this manner, you’ll have lower-priced items for sale for those who say they’re interested but don’t have the money. If they purchase your lower-priced item, they may find the money in the future for a higher-priced item, but only if they know about the other products/services you offer.

How do you ask for the sale? Here are some thoughts:

  • Include Calls-to-Action everywhere: at the end of every blog post; in your social media posts; within your eBook and other products. Invite your prospects to take the next logical step with you.
  • In your email marketing: don’t be afraid to tell your readers about new offers. Never assume someone knows what you’re up to; be proactive and proud of your accomplishments and shout it from the rooftops.
  • At the end of your one-on-one consultations: always ask if they are ready for the next step (i.e.: to make a purchase) or if you can follow up with them after a specific timeframe if they need time to think. If someone is on the fence, now is when you nurture this relationship so they remember YOU when they are finally ready to make a purchase.

At the end of the day, if you listen to what your audience needs, there’s no harm in making the offer and asking for the sale. If they say no, move on while nurturing the relationship.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Three Magical Words That Will Alleviate Business Stress

Picture yourself in a perfect world, in your perfect office, running your perfect business. What’s your role? Do you have team members or are you still doing everything by yourself? How much money are you making? Do you have products? Do your clients rave about you?

Yes, our perfect worlds are goals certainly worth aiming for but if you’re still a solopreneur who’s doing every job by themselves, it’s time to sit and learn the importance of these three words. Understanding and implementing these three little words will alleviate your stress and help grow your business. Truly!

1. Automate

Plenty of admin tasks can be automated nowadays, which frees up time for you to focus on money-making ideas. Set up automatic monthly payments for recurring business expenses. Set up labels and filters for your email inbox. Collect customer data with forms on your website. Create automated email responses when people send in customer service inquiries. Use an autoresponder to send monthly newsletters to clients. Be creative…there’s an app for everything these days.

2. Delegate

Have you ever considered hiring an assistant or other virtual team member? All the automated tasks mentioned above can be completed in record time by an experienced virtual assistant while you focus on your social media presence and connecting with your tribe. Or hire a social media manager to keep your followers engaged. Upgrade your branding image by hiring a professional graphic artist and a photographer to take premium headshots. Delegate tasks to experienced experts who can troubleshoot problems and complete tasks in half the time it will take you to do it.

3. Eliminate

Analyze your business practices and ask yourself if there’s anything that seems archaic or that isn’t worth the time. Sometimes this is an older way of doing things, like manual bookkeeping.

Just because you’ve been doing it this way for years doesn’t mean it can’t be updated or eliminated. Set aside time every quarter or at least every year to investigate new software or platforms that can automate your practice or eliminate unnecessary tasks so you can save time and ultimately, money.

Set aside some time to Automate, Delegate, and Eliminate processes in your business and alleviate some of your stress.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

Four Weeks to Supercharging Your Marketing to Increase Profits

If you want to be successful at online marketing there are several things you can do to increase your chances. The first is to sit down and think about everything that needs to be done in your business to make it a success.

After product discovery and / or creation; marketing needs to be tops on that list. Marketing sometimes can be left to the wind. But, if you really want to be successful, you have to place a high priority on it.

Week One – Planning Ahead

One of the most important things you can do to ensure marketing success is to plan in advance what you will be marketing and the different ways in which you will do so for any given product or service. It’s not a “one and done” proposition. It takes a few weeks to get the message out and get people to answer your calls to action. They’ll need to see them in multiple ways. Create a separate plan for each product and marketing channel. 

Week Two – Email Marketing

Arguably the most important way to earn money, practically on demand, is to build a healthy email list full of hungry prospects. Make it your goal to fill your list so that you can market your products and services repeatedly to your audience in a more direct way. Create ongoing campaigns for your auto responder segmented by where, when and how a prospect signs up for your list. If you know in advance what you will write about on your blogs, social media and email marketing, you’ll be more successful.

Week Three – Smart Promotion Tactics

You’ve likely read a lot about promotional tactics but some of what you read just doesn’t feel right. The fact is you don’t have to resort to sleazy tactics to succeed at earning money online. You can market your products with integrity and pride because all the products you create and find are exactly what you claim they are. No marketing “puffery” required.

When you are proud of your products you can promote them on social media, within blog posts, and in email and feel great about it. There is never a reason to feel guilty about making money from your products and services when they are of high quality.

Week Four – Getting Exposure

Even if your business is 100% online, getting exposure may require that you step outside of your comfort zone and start using other mediums such as online radio interviews, guest blogging, authorship, speaking engagements and more . You might also want to look into strategic joint ventures and / or pay per click advertising on Google or Facebook.

Planning out what you will do each week, then simply repeating it every time you have a new product or service will help you become more successful than you ever thought possible. If you play your cards right, the truth is, increasing your profits is simply a few weeks away.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

Ready to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

5 Tips for Being a Better Listener for Your Coaching Clients

If you’re a coach, you better be a good listener. You need to hear what your clients say; no daydreaming allowed. Yes, you need to have expertise to help them work through their problems or to improve their mindset, but you won’t know which advice to offer if you don’t listen carefully.

In today’s busy world, however, it’s very easy to get distracted, which doesn’t bode well when you’re trying to build trust with your clients. A distracted coach is one who doesn’t fully care about their clients and is only in this business to make money or to make a name for themselves.

Take an assessment of your listening skills today. Do you really listen to what your clients say? Do you have a firm grasp on what areas they need help? Have you ever tuned out while looking at your phone? Be honest with yourself.

Here are 5 ways you can become a better listener:

1. Keep eye contact. Meet in a webinar conference room or in a real physical location and focus on the person’s face because looking around aimlessly gives the impression that you’re not listening. If you’re taking notes while on a video call, tell them that so they don’t think you’re on your phone or dozing off when you look down.

2. Pretend that you’re going to repeat this conversation. This is a mind exercise because, obviously, your clients want their sessions kept confidential. However, thinking that you need to remember the most important parts of the conversation will help you stay focused. Use this as an aid for taking notes, too.

3. Turn off your phone. Or put it on silent mode and keep it in your purse or in a drawer away from your desk. The only time it should come out during a session is when you’re scheduling a follow up session and you check your calendar.

4. Ask open-ended questions. Coaching sessions are meant to be two-way conversations so instead of focusing on taking notes, pay attention to details and ask related questions. Don’t try to be a mind reader and don’t make assumptions. Simply ask questions and allow your client to elaborate.

5. Summarize the session. At the end of the session offer a summary, either verbally or via email. Also include the next steps your client should take before your next session. If they say anything during the session that is unclear or confusing, offer a summary immediately by saying, “I hear you saying…” and add in your version of what they said. They can correct any

misunderstanding right away while you show them that you’re paying attention to the little details.

If you’re doing all of these things, great! Your clients should feel good that you’re listening and actually hearing what they’re saying. If you admit that you’re not a great listener, there’s no time like the present to make that change and improve your trustworthiness.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvc.comReady to find out how to take your business to the next level? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary session to discuss your marketing and website/social media presence, here!

How Much Transparency Is Too Much?

We’ve talked before about storytelling and authenticity, and how being your true self is your most powerful branding tactic. But just how open and honest should you be when it comes to sharing your story?

Pat Flynn and Jon Lee Dumas are notorious for their transparency, even going so far as to post monthly income statements. You might argue that when you’re making the kind of bank they do (6+ figures each month) it’s easy to share—perhaps even inspirational to your audience. But it might also be off-putting to some, since talking about money is often seen as vulgar. In this case, though, it works to attract the exact audience they are after. Others will find other mentors, and that is, after all, the point of marketing.

Transparency comes in other forms as well. Struggles with alcoholism, depression, cancer and other health concerns are commonly shared. Stories of marriage and relationship triumphs (and tragedies) are told. Even spats between competing businesses aren’t off limits for some marketers.

That doesn’t mean, though, that you have to be frank and honest about all areas of your life and business. With a little forethought and planning, you can keep certain aspects of your story private.

Watch Your Social Media Profiles

Here’s where a lot of business owners falter, especially when it comes to Facebook. You have your personal profile, to which you invite friends and family, and your business page, where you talk, well, business.

But there will inevitably be some overlap. Colleagues will slowly filter into your personal timeline, and you into theirs. Pretty soon, your businesspeople are hearing all about your latest bout with the flu and that snarky thing your mother in law said yesterday. Too much? Maybe.

When it comes to your social media sharing, it’s important to pay close attention to not only what you say, but who you’re saying it to. Using privacy settings, contact lists, and even limiting who you “friend” can help maintain your privacy while still being transparent about your business offerings.

Remember, the Internet is Forever

While privacy settings can help, a better way to keep your personal business away from prying eyes is to simply not post it at all. Think of every blog post, Tweet, Facebook status update and Instagram pic as a billboard. If you wouldn’t post it on the side of the highway for all who pass to read it, don’t put it online either. The chance that it will “leak” (despite your best efforts) is great, and once it’s out there, you will not ever get it back.

So think twice about those nasty replies, intimate details, and other confidential information. You just never know who might be reading, and they will affect your brand image.

The bottom line? Know your audience and know yourself. If you’re not comfortable sharing certain aspects of your life and business, chances are they won’t be comfortable hearing about it, either. It’s okay to maintain some privacy, even in this transparent world of online marketing.

Jeannine Grich, CVA, MVA, EthicsChecked™, provides marketing and social media support, training and consulting to busy entrepreneurs. For information about finding a VA, download her FREE 10-Step Guide to Finding the Right VA, or to learn why Social Media should be an important part of your marketing plan check out her FREE Report, Social Media Marketing Benefits, visit: https://accbizsvc.com/, or contact her at Jeannine@accbizsvcs

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