Let me first say that nothing will make you or your business likable if you are not already a likeable person or if you do not truly care enough about others to serve them and help make their lives easier, better, richer, etc. As I said in my last post – we can all spot the fakers. But you can demonstrate your likeability in more ways than just one-on-one meetings.
Try these five suggestions for creating a likeable business presence:
1. Make Life Easier.
People love others who can make their lives easier. Think about how you can help your clients and prospects make daily life simpler. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think about what they need. It might not always be something you offer as a product or service. It might be as simple as giving them the name of a power washing company or the name of a great pet-sitter, if that is what they need. Talk about building a relationship!
2. Share Your Expertise.
Customers and prospects come to you because they require your expertise. That doesn’t mean you should lecture them. Be informative-engaging rather than boring-lecture-yawn-yawn-yawn. There’s a fine line between arrogant and knowledgeable, so tread carefully. Imagine how you would want to be educated about your subject matter if you were a customer. The best advice? Be yourself – but be the ‘you’ that customers want to turn to first in your industry.
3. Don’t Talk About You…Talk About Them.
Business owners often (erroneously) believe that by sharing as much information as possible about themselves and their business, customers will learn who they are and want to do business with them. The truth? Customers and prospects want to know what your product or service can do for them. If they want to learn about wheelchairs, do you really think you should spend much time talking about your company’s 83-year history and that you started out as an iron foundry? Save it for your Company History page…and spend your time talking about what your product or service can do to make their lives happier, richer, easier, better.
4. Get Real.
In today’s crazy, always-on world, it’s as simple as being genuine. Be sure to let your customers and prospects know they are important. Show you care and be there for them.
5. Can Technology Make You More Likeable?
Technology – especially social media, mobile marketing and email – has had a huge impact on our personal and professional relationships. It’s changed the way we communicate – with many of our messages becoming shorter and more casual. It has also added exponentially to the number of marketing messages that bombard us these days. That means you and I – as business owners – work harder for smaller and smaller amounts of our prospect’s or customer’s attention.
Email (used properly) and social media can be amazing tools for showing who you (and your business) really are. Use tools like Twitter and Facebook to engage with your audience on more personal levels. Your email marketing and blog can also give your readers a sense of your personality and how you can help others. All of these electronic channels are great for letting some of the professional ‘real you’ shine through.
But make sure you understand your audience. If 83% of your target demographic consists of organic gardeners, tweeting about your use of pesticides won’t engage them (and might – instead – enrage them!). Give them info they find useful, but make it personal – make it connect with them…and remember, social media doesn’t replace the in-person you.
Are you struggling with how to turn your brand into a likeable business?