But first I want to see your scar tissue!
So said De Backman-Hoyle, Director of Inspiration, Inspired Workplace Performers at a recent Women’s Network Australian luncheon.
De started her presentation by asking three questions of the seventy plus women in the room:
Who would say they were passionately committed to telling others about this product or service?
How many people would like to get more results from influencing and persuading others about their products and services?’
The response was a sea of hands to each question.
De went on to deliver a powerful slant on today’s version of give and you shall receive.
Or reciprocity. De quoted American Sociologist, Alvin Goulder:
‘Reciprocity is the almost universal belief that people should be paid back for what they do’
She suggested we may be wondering today why this model no longer works and posited the theory that we have become greedy in an age of free service, tasters and more valuable information that we can possibly absorb.
We have moved from a position of ‘what I do for you, I might want back,’ to a reciprocity ratio closer to four to one.
Reciprocity may now be more accurately described as ‘give it away, give it away, give it away and then gently ask for a sale’ or, as she concluded, ‘ if you like what I have given you, you may want to consider what I have to offer.’
Blogging is a highly flexible and cost effective means to disseminate that valuable information, and those free services to your community (which it has assisted you to build in the first place!) But more importantly, consistent blogging earns you the right to ask for reciprocity by building trust, rapport and authority.
What more can you do to further persuade and influence others, that what you have to offer is worthy of consideration?
De asked us if we knew what and how valuable our currencies were. What value did we give to our reputation and our social approval? How did we build our reputations? How did we leverage of our social approval? Did we know how to differentiate ourselves from others?
‘Did we know where our niche sat and how specific we can get about it?’ she asked.
She spoke about this as deep reconnaissance. Getting into their heads. What are their frustrations and pains and how could you ease, reduce of eliminate them?
Merge this deep exploration into the cost of doing your business, she suggested.
I call this finding your most wanted customer. Online, it is done through detailed and thorough keyword research, which leads you to sites and blogs and forums that your most wanted customer frequents.
People have used specific terms in their search browsers to find specific solutions for what they seek. When you follow this journey, drilling down into where they are taken by the search engines and what is on offer, you are constantly honing your understanding of both your most wanted customer and what they are looking for and your competitors; what’s on offer and from whom.
Have you been in my pain?
De spoke with eloquence about walking the walk. Your ability to demonstrate that you have experienced what you are asking others to go through.
Let me see your scar tissue
You cannot position yourself as the expert if you have not felt their pain, nor can you build a rapport without being absolutely real. To that she added clarity and confidence, explaining that you must be clear, concise and succinct in telling your story and confident in your successes.
‘Demonstrate mastery,’ she said. ‘Give me you and why you’. ‘What about your story makes you different?’
Blogging allows you to tell all the parts of your story, in your voice. When you consistently give valuable information and solutions, you are providing a service. When you do it constantly, you build authority which in turn builds your authenticity and your reputation.
Set your filters high
De’s assertion that you should not prostitute yourself for just any old business, but only work for those where there is a values fit and who have the capacity to pay and on your terms, is fundamental to positioning yourself as a successful expert in your niche.
Put your money where your mouth is. Do as De does. If you do not deliver then the client doesn’t pay. Now that is courageous. But it is also authentic.
If yours was a hand up at the lunch, passionate about your solution and how it will benefit others, then adoption of these ideas challenges you to raise the bar on your business.
De can be contacted through her website www.ipwa.com.au/contact-us
If you would like to know more about how you can use blogging to have an authentic rapport with your business community then please contact me. I would be very pleased to help.
For another perspective, read The Principle of Fair Exchange and Value.