social media marketing
corporate online branding

Top 5 Secrets to Building Your Executive Brand be Top Influencer

The constant evolution of online marketing is becoming more and more challenging, especially for those not in the industry. I recently gave a presentation at an AZTechBeat Lunch & Learn (#AZTBlunch) on how to build your brand and become a top influencer. What was most interesting about this presentation was that everybody in the room was interested on a personal level.

I shared some “ninja” secrets on the top 5 ways to build your personal brand (executive branding) to grow your influence and relevance online. Here’s a quick rundown:

  1. Be ‘The Hunted’ Online
  2. Get Down with O.P.P.
  3. Be Review-markable
  4. Be like Tom Sawyer
  5. Start a Trust

Here are some of the top take-aways from the presentation:

  • Personal and professional networks should no longer be considered separate events.
  • Your influence online is a combination of all your social networks and things you have published articles: blogs, press releases, video, etc.
  • You dedicate time online by either “spending your time” as a social event or investing your time to build your brand equity.
  • It makes sense to focus your social media efforts with the top social networks:
    • Facebook
    • Google Plus
    • LinkedIn
    • Twitter
    • Tumblr
    • Pinterest
    • …do you have others that should be listed here?
  • Most importantly, you need to define what your overall goals are (e.g. – generating inbound opportunities)

top social networks by active users in 2014This leads to ninja secret #1 about being ‘the hunted’ online. Although this may sound like a bad thing, you know from your own experiences that you don’t go online to find the 5th, 6th, 10th or 20th best person/business suited for your needs. You are looking for the expert, the best in class, and that’s whom you want to reach out to and become.

Looking for a quick way to get to the top…think O.P.P (ninja tip #2). I am not referring to the song by Naughty by Nature, O.P.P., but Other Peoples Profiles. Find influencers in the markets that you want to become a top influencer in and come up with a strategy to get access to their profiles with a blend of your marketing message that best suits the interests of the influencer. One of the easiest ways is to simply do a Google Hangout and then turn the video into a collaborative multimedia marketing event. Think of this as an ongoing campaign by developing articles, images, status updates, video and think of creative ways to get this campaign on other peoples profiles to help get the message out. We call this content marketing methodology, the content wheel.

executive brand building content wheelTo become review-markable (ninja tip #3), you need to be remarkable and think in terms of giving instead of receiving. About half of the top influencers write 2-5 reviews weekly. Build some karma credit by writing reviews and going out of your way to help other people and their brands and this will come back tenfold to you.

Regarding being like Tom Sawyer (ninja tip #4), this is the art of segmenting your brand into the three buckets of you:

  • Your personal side – @ Play
  • Your professional side – @ Work
  • You socially conscious side – @ Community

If you think of the story of Tom Sawyer, he was such a master negotiator that he got other people to paint his fence for him (willingly) and they also gave him something of monetary value just for the privilege of doing the work for him. By looking at his personal and community interests, you get a better understanding of how this was accomplished.

executive brand building personal branding

There are three dynamics to building and marketing your executive brand. Start by going to your LinkedIn profile and organize it in the three buckets of you (professionally, personal attributes and your community outreach).

Here is a tip for reaching out to influencers…just because you have a professional commonality doesn’t make you interesting. When reaching out to influencers, focus on the personal aspects and communities ties and then show your human side to reach the influencer on a professional level. This common ground is a far more interesting and effective outreach strategy.

The last tip (ninja tip #5) is to build a trust, a digital asset trust. This is the way you organize all of your online marketing channels and how to best leverage them to grow your influence and relevance online. Take inventory of all the social media profiles you have as an individual and for the brand that you represent and put them into a Google Doc or spreadsheet. Use tools like Klout.com to connect all of the social networks in one place to see how to enhance your online clout and influence.

If you are interested in getting access to MINT Social’s upcoming launch of The Digital Asset MINT, click here to complete our online form and reference Digital Asset MINT.

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Content Marketing Made Simple with Bucket Marketing

by Matthew O'Brien on September 8, 2014

persona marketing with bucket marketingOne of the top statements that is made to us when consulting with new prospects is:

“We do not have a content strategy.”

In fact, they typically go on to say…

“We’re not clear on what we should be talking about to bring in qualified new business opportunities.“

This is also very indicative of the challenges a new business start-up faces. As a mentor at Arizona State University’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Group, some of the top companies that are coming out of this accelerator program have the same type of content challenge. These businesses are either cash strapped or resource strapped and do not see online marketing or even content marketing with social media as a top priority because they don’t have the resources and knowledge to dedicate time to it. The start-ups are typically asking:

“Where is the low hanging fruit?”

“What is the easiest way to go about content marketing to get the best results for bringing in new opportunities.”

Our recommendation is to think in terms of a bucket. Who are your top three prospects/buyer personas? Who are the ideal customers that you’re looking to attract?

Bucket Marketing
Develop content for the three buckets that represent your top three prospects. You can target your prospects by job title, industry type, demographic make-up, etc. The type of content that you develop to attract new opportunities should point back to one of these three prospect types (your buyer personas). Ask these questions about each of your top prospects:

  • What are the top five challenges or pains that this prospect experiences?
  • What are the success factors that this buyer persona is looking to experience?

persona marketing buyer persona

Develop a list of the top five successes that each buyer persona is moving towards. Once completed, you will have identified the most important opportunities for securing new business with your prospects. Direct your product, service, and business offerings towards these success factors and away from the pain points.

We recommend reaching out to your customer base. Do you have customers that emulate these buyer personas? If so, let’s validate the success factors and pain point assumptions for the three prospects/buyer personas. Now take these five success factors and five pain points and weave them into stories.

Interview your customers and validate if your customers are experiencing these same types of successes and if your company did in fact alleviate the pain points you identified. Get them to share their story and put these stories in their respective marketing buckets.

Now that we have these buckets full of marketing content, how do we get the word out? Take the approach of putting a scent on top of these stories. Personalizing your marketing message specifically for each buyer prospect helps to create a scent that will get engagement.

Next step is to sprinkle these stories out into your online marketing channels and social networks; video sites, blog platforms, photo sharing sites, articles, press releases, you name it. These stories will resonate with your prospects, especially when you break it down into multi-media marketing campaigns.

Use all of your social networks. Start sprinkling your content to your marketing channels. Think of each story you have captured as an ongoing campaign of 2 months or more. Attracting new prospects and tracking the success of each campaign will follow if you think of this as an ongoing event vs. a single one time publishing experience. Pay close attention to:

  • What for of media is getting most engagement?
  • What’s marketing channels are driving people to your site?
  • What is your overall conversion rate overall?

Ultimately, there should be a good call to action page for each campaign with three strong call to actions. One call-to-action is getting inbound phone calls. If you don’t want people to call you, make sure you have a simple form capture on your landing page. If prospects are not quite ready to contact you, have an email capture as a way for them to give you some piece of communication so you can follow up with them.

This simplified approach to marketing, that we call bucket marketing, can help to grow inbound opportunities through a more personalized marketing message to your targeted buyer personas.

Good luck. Have fun. Get great results!

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Maximizing Productivity with The Can’t Do List

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The word “can’t” can be a motivator. Have you ever told a child they can’t do something? Relentless pursuit of what they can’t have or do typically follows. Remember when we were told not to stare into the sun or it will burn our eyes? Did you end up doing it anyways? I had to […]

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Is Your Personal Brand Making a Good First Impression in Social Media?

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