Authentic Marketing – a lot of people are talking about it.
I’ve seen articles recently that are telling folks not to REALLY be authentic – just tell the story you want people to hear…
NO NO NO!
A better way to put this is to be discerning, which is my #2 rule!
The 5 Rules of Engagement for Authentic Marketing
1. Be Authentic: not false or copied; genuine; real
There is no way around this. It’s Rule #1. The Big Kahuna.
If you aren’t 100% honest, genuine and real, you will not be successful online.
You cannot copy someone else’s style. You can’t fake it till you make it.
You must be open, honest and your true self to be successful in today’s online environment.
I’m from Wisconsin and I AM a cheesehead. I never thought I’d grow up to use this fact in marketing but I do and it works.
2. Be Discerning: to distinguish mentally; recognize as distinct or different; discriminate
Being authentic requires that you share information about yourself. But you must DISCERN what you want to be part of your personal brand.
For instance, you may be of a certain political persuasion. If this is important in what you do and what you bring to the world then use this as part of your message. If not, I recommend you leave it alone.
The same goes for religion, politically charged issues, and your personal life. If you’ve, for instance, filed for bankruptcy, are divorced or lost your job, make sure you want everyone to know before you mention it online.
As silly as it sounds, I DID think long and hard before using the picture of me with a cheesehead hat on. It’s hokey and quite frankly, some people may be offended by it… which I think is ridiculous so I wouldn’t want to do business with them anyway!
It’s better to hesitate because you can’t take it back!
Remember that everything, EVERYTHING you do online, (comments on blogs, picture and video uploads, personal FaceBook page, etc.,) become part of your PERSONAL brand FOREVER.
3. Educate: to inform
Your tribe will follow you because they’re interested in who you are and what you do. If your goal is to sell to them, you must gain their trust. To do this, you must clearly demonstrate your experience and knowledge in your given field by providing useful and actionable information FOR FREE.
Share your competitors information if it’s good.
Don’t be afraid to show that there are others in your field who have great tips and tricks.
4. Entertain: to hold the attention of, pleasantly or agreeably; divert; amuse
Your tribe will follow you because you make them feel good. There are countless ways to entertain your tribe online today. YouTube videos, cartoons, analogies, inspirational quotes, and personal stories. Your personal stories will make them feel closer to you, and relate to you as someone who has gone through similar experiences.
One of my favorite examples of just plain entertainment is the video “Charlie bit my finger” which has been seen by millions of people over the years. It’s still popular because it’s cute, funny and entertaining! Check it out:
5. Use the 80/20 Rule: 80% Chitty Chatty – 20% Selling your stuff
Online marketing is fun because it’s about sharing what you think is funny, inspirational and educational. It’s exactly like having a conversation with someone where you’re really EXCITED about what you do and your life. It’s also about being honest about who you are and what your challenges are.
It’s also critical to have a plan on what you’re going to sell and when. Don’t waste your time on social media. I spend a lot of time chatting, commenting and sharing general information – but there’s a method to my madness. I TOTALLY intend to try and sell my products and services to everyone I interact with.
WHAT DO YOU HAVE THAT YOU CAN SHARE? How can you connect with others?
I’d love to help you share that – be a guest blogger on my site – or ask me to share your story to my list.
Let’s work together!