How to Market to Your Audience Influencers

How to Market to Your Audience Influencers - Jeff Korhan

Is your sales or marketing failing to generate the results your business expects?

Remember when you were a child and sought permission from one of your parents, only to have them respond: “Go ask your father (or mother)?” You learned to separately sell both, or first win over the one that influences the final decision maker.

In every selling situation there are direct and indirect influencers. Tweet this.

Our job as sales and marketing professionals is to identify and understand this extended audience, and then respond to their influence with our primary decision makers.

The Circles of Influence Exercise

A useful exercise for understanding your audience influencers starts by drawing a circle on a sheet of paper and placing your business (or business role) within it. Then draw a circle around that and within it write down the various classes of buyers your business serves.

Draw another circle around that one and put in it the influencers of your primary buyers. This could include bosses, colleagues, competitors, friends, family, etc. Around that circle write down the products and services your company offers.

You should start to get new ideas on how your offerings could be better positioned. You may also get ideas for changes to existing products and services, and even ideas for new ones. For example, if your primary buyer is conservative in regards to technology, isn’t it possible their influencers are encouraging them to adapt to it?

Isn’t it also possible these influencers are his or her children, whose names and whereabouts you’ve long since forgotten?

The takeaway from this exercise is that people are often influenced by the people around them, especially those they encounter every day. Smart businesses know this, but even the best of us occasionally fail to consider it.

Make it part of your process.

Acknowledge, Involve, and Help Audience Influencers

In my business as a professional speaker my primary audience is the meeting planner of the association or organization that hires me. However, it is their audience that I am ultimately serving. So, I have to learn as much as possible about them to ensure my presentation or workshop is a success.

These days you can use social media to do research and engage with buyers and influencers alike. In fact, if your business is having trouble connecting with buyers, a reliable method for making that happen is to involve the influencers that can introduce you to them.

To earn their trust, use your media to learn about the problems audience influencers may have. For example, while I help businesses with their content marketing and social media, I know for a fact that many of them have children that need the same help – building their personal media brand to help them get into college or land a new job.

That was my insight after doing this exercise. Now I’m working to determine specifically what to do about it. How about you?

Do you think helping the people that your customers want to help is smart business? Me too.

About the Author:  Jeff Korhan, MBA, is the author of Built-In Social: Essential Social Marketing Practices for Every Small Business and host of This Old New Business podcast.

He helps mainstream businesses adapt their traditional growth practices to a digital world. Connect with Jeff on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and Google+

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Google+ Communities: Amplify Your Content In Search

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This Old New Business Podcast with Jeff KorhanThis is Episode 8 of This Old New Business weekly business podcast with Jeff Korhan.

Earlier this year Social Media Examiner released an extensive social media marketing industry report that revealed learning Google+ was a top priority for businesses.

One of the reasons for this is they intuitively understand Google+ impacts Google search results. However, there is a lot of confusion as to how that works and what steps should be taken to leverage that possibility.

During our conversation, Martin Shervington shared an interesting perspective on this. He said, “Google+ isn’t just another Facebook or Twitter. This thing is different.”

It is different! This is why some people have a hard time wrapping their minds around Google+. You’ll want to listen to this episode more than once as Martin breaks it all down for us.

Our Featured Guest: Martin Shervington

Google+ Communities: Amplify Your Content in SearchMartin Shervington is an executive coach, business consultant, and marketing psychologist whose work centers on communication, people, and technology in modern life. He splits his time between the UK and the United States working on a number of web marketing projects, with a great majority of them involving Google and Google+.

Google+ is Google

There are two aspects to Google+. One is that Google+ is a destination or identity service. This first quality is the evolution of Google+ from what was originally Google Profiles.

Make no mistake, this quality of Google+ is invaluable for amplifying your personal identity in search results. Everyone should be diligent about ensuring their personal profile includes up-to-date feeds of all of the content published on the web that they author in full or part.

However, when Martin states that Google+ is Google, he is referring to much more than its ownership. The larger picture is the social layer of Google+ that runs through all the Google services, including Gmail, YouTube, Google Drive, Google Maps, Google Now, and many, many more.

Thus, given that the various Google services affect your presence online, and therefore within search, that Google+ layer that integrates all of them is indeed Google. They are one and the same.

Google+ Influences Google

Google is an interactive community ecosystem that is more than the sum of its individual sites. For example, comments on your YouTube channel extend to your Google+ profile and that of the commenter, as well as with everyone you are both connected to on Google+.

Looking at the reverse, if you share a post on Google+ and someone with greater authority then shares it again, Google will most likely rank their Google+ share higher than yours – the original source.

The collective authority of Google+ communities is effectively shared by all. Tweet this

If there is one clear takeaway from this episode, it is that Google+ communities are searchable, micro-engines that can amplify your content withn search.

This Thing is Different

Since Google killed Google Authorship, there has been some speculation that Google may kill Google+ too. Martin disagrees with that speculation for the simple reason that Google+ is the next generation of Google.

Unlike Google+, Facebook and Twitter stand alone, whereas Google+ integrates with the entire Google ecosystem. Therefore, killing off Google+ would be like killing the body to eradicate a cancer. It doesn’t make any sense.

If you are new to Google+ it will take some time to get accustomed to it. However, keep in mind that with other networks, you are the user and advertisers are the true customers. Whereas, at least for now, Google+ is designed exclusively for people like you that want to build community and amplify their content in search. 

Is your business ready to learn and adapt?

Lighting Round Tips and Advice

Martins’s Top Sales or Marketing Advice – Build relationships that allow your 100 brand evangelists to tell the world that you are amazing.

His Favorite Productivity Tip – Use Google Drive – especially if you work with an assistant and teams.

Two Quotes that Inspired Martins’s Success – “Fortune favors the bold” and “A man chasing two rabbits catches neither.”

Key Take-Aways

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About the Author:  Jeff Korhan, MBA, is the author of Built-In Social: Essential Social Marketing Practices for Every Small Business and host of This Old New Business podcast.

He helps mainstream businesses adapt their traditional growth practices to a digital world. Connect with Jeff on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and Google+

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