Personal Branding – How To Grow Your Personal Brand Like Muhammad Ali Grew His

muhammad ali

Personal Branding Secret Weapon

Lie to yourself, because there’s someone talking to you about your personal brand every single moment of every single day – no it’s not an advertiser – it’s you.  We all speak to ourselves.  Most often we live up to what we tell ourselves – good or bad.

Who’s The Undisputed Personal Branding Heavy Weight Champ?

If you’re considering personal branding there’s something you can learn from number one personal brand in the personal branding muhammad aliworld – Muhammad Ali.

Something to make you go – hmm!: Muhammad Ali holds the Guinness World Record for the most documented person.  More than Lincoln or Jesus Christ. He’s considered one of the 20 most influential Americans of all time…according to Time Magazine.

Ali’s Personal Branding Secret

What was Muhammad’s personal branding secret? He lied to himself.  He said “I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was”.  In essence he told himself something about his brand before it was true.  The key here is that Ali lived up to the lie he told himself.

Choose to tell yourself a wonderful lie about yourself, business, or brand, and work every day to live up to it.

Facebook Custom Audiences Has a Chance To Revolutionize Digital Advertising

Recently Facebook rolled out a new target marketing program called Custom Audiences which as it is now, has great potential for advertisers but with just a little tweeking could sky rocket advertising ROI.  When I first read about this on the Facebook site it immediately reminded me of the now defunct Polk Dealer Marketing Manager.

What are Facebook Custom Audiences

Custom audiences allows marketers to find their offline audiences among Facebook users. Using email addresses, phone numbers or Facebook user IDs to make the match, dealerships can now find the exact people they want to talk to, in custom audiences that are defined by what you already know.

This means that in addition to targeting the types of people you want to reach among the Facebook population, you can now also reach segments of specific people based on information you have about your own, offline audiences.

What can marketers do with Custom Audiences?

You can create a custom audience representing any group of customers or prospect list that you’d like to reach with targeted Facebook Ads. For example, you could run a campaign to get more likes for your Page, targeted at your current customers who have not yet liked your Page. Then when you publish to them, you’ll know you are reaching people who are already engaged with your brand.

You can also use custom audiences for objectives off Facebook. If you have a loyalty program or frequent customer list, you might want to reach those people with a special offer or sale.

How Facebook could make Custom Audiences a more powerful tool

Here’s the challenge – How much do you really know about the clients in your database.  Regardless of your answer I can tell you 100% certainty you know less about them than Facebook does.  For example can you separate your client data by fan type.  No! But, what if you knew exactly who the people in your database were that were golf, football, basketball, or baseball fans.  Facebook knows who they are.

What if you knew exactly which women in your CMS subscribed to Oprahs Facebook fan page.  Facebook knows them by name.  Automotive dealers could offer a free $10 subscription to O Magazine to existing female customers, who currently own a vehicle 5 years old or older, to come in and test the new version of their existing vehicle?

What if a real-estate broker knew which of her clients had recently liked the fan page of a new residential development.  Could should she run a Facebook ad just to that group reminding them competing listings in her portfolio.

No brainers – right?

The right message to the right person

This was the power of Polks Dealer Marketing Manager back in the early 2000’s, and is the real potential power in Facebooks Custom Audiences.  Offer Mrs. Jones a free subscription to O Magazine because you already know she subscribes to Oprah’s fan page.  Dealer Marketing Manager was way ahead of its time and dealers nor their ad agencies really knew back then how to take full advantage of it so Polk killed it.

Facebook should offer ‘super segmenting’ and ‘micro-targeting’ with Custom Audiences

  1. Allow advertisers to upload a hashed email addresses and phone numbers (what they do now)
  2. Tell advertisers what they, Facebook, know about these users.  For example what fan pages they belong to, do they follow particular sports teams, etc
  3. Provide an interface that the dealer or their agency can sort and manipulate this information

I call this super-segmenting.  Now that the list is super segmented ads can be published on Facebook and be micro-targeted dramatically increasing the chances of a favorable response to message.


Reverse Mortgage Marketing: The Best Social Media Platforms For Driving Business

Social Media Channels

The other day I was with my good friend Donald Graves who works as a Reverse Mortgage Consultant.  Our conversation turned to social media and Don mentioned that he doesn’t see the benefit in a social media platform like Twitter for himself.  He’s busy and he just doesn’t get what benefit social media could add to reverse mortgage marketing.

That got me to thinking about which social media platforms are the best for reverse mortgage marketing – here’s what I uncovered.  Don…this one for you dawg!

The following findings were from HubSpots 2012 research into the stat of inbound marketing.

Inbound marketing out performs outbound marketing

First inbound marketing (SEO, blogs, social media) as compared to outbound marketing (trade shows, network groups, shaking hands and kissing babies) was found to be more effective both from a cost, lead quality, and closing ration stand points.  But it turns out that the best inbound marketing platform depends on your business type, B2B or B2C.  Generally speaking  best for B2B LinkedIn, best for B2C Facebook.

Social Media Customer Acquisition by Channel

Best social media platform depends on industry

Diving deeper into the data results show that effectiveness of blogs, Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin varies by industry.


Social Media Channel Effect by Industry

Best platforms for Don and others marketing reverse mortgages

For banking, insurance, and financial services the research shows Linkedin and Twitter are the best platforms for building a tribe (the people who will give you permission to inform them).  But why? It’s not likely that there are very many 72 year olds on Linkedin or Twitter – but their children, grand children, accountants, attorneys, financial planners, and a host of other people who can send you leads are.

Remember what your potential clients are shopping for

For the most part your potential clients and those who can refer them are not shopping for a reverse mortgage (although they may think they are).  What they are really in the market for is a company and RMC they can trust – and you and I both know that’s not something easy to come by.  So what you need to sell is trust.

My advice

  1. Get and stay ahead of the competition by starting a blog and makeing it your primary inbound marketing platform (because research shows a direct correlation between the number of blog post and customer conversions)
    1. A blog is your digital media property.  If Twitter or Linkedin go belly up you’ve still got your Internet property to continue to lead your tribe.
    2. This will give you a platform to build your tribe
    3. Don’t be pushy – social media puts control in the hands of the consumer – they can turn you off just as easy as they can turn you on – and they will
  2. Use Linkedin and Twitter to support your blogging efforts

A few closing thoughts

  1. You likely won’t get leads or conversions overnight
  2. Don’t do it to make sales – do it because you like it – that’s the only way you’ll stick with it – and the only way your tribe will follow you
  3. Why listen to me anyway – because I’ve closed more than 100 reverse mortgage loans using inbound marketing strategies

Something to make you go – hmm!

  1. The technical information on reverse mortgages can be found on 7,820,000 different websites (the actual number of search results Google generated today for the term ‘reverse mortgage’)
  2. Find a way to give your Tribe something they can’t get anywhere else – a Purple Cow


Creating Want – How Nike, Michael Jordan and Mars Blackmon Did It

creating want nike jordan and mars blackmon

creating want nike jordan and mars blackmonCreating Want

I recently read a statement online that said the job of marketing is to create needs and sell to them.  Although this may have been true 20 years ago it is vastly inaccurate today.  Why?

There are no needs for marketing to meet anymore

Marketers have already filled every human need possible.  No one, especially in America, needs anything any more.  Does a company truly need a new website?  Does someone really need a new home?  Does anyone really need another book?  Did you really need that cup of Starbucks? Do I need a Brita water filter…really? What about a new car? No, no, no!

Because people truly don’t need anything any more and given that there are far to many alternatives for something that you can even make a case for needing the only thing left for marketing is to sell to….wants.  But even that’s not enough to dominate a market segment.

So what’s a marketer to do?

To be successful marketers must go beyond simply identifying and selling to wants to creating want.

Mars Blackmon & Michael Jordan made you want the shoes

No one ever has, nor ever will need a pair of Air Jordan’s.  Even if you argue your sneaks are torn to shreds you could make another choice and buy a pair of Converse or Addidas, etc.

In 1987 Nike marketing took a vastly different approach than other sports shoe manufactures.  They created a series of sneaker commercials focused on creating want for not just any basketball shoe, but the Air Jordan.  Watch and learn:


In today’s era

“Marketing’s job is creating want”

Ways to anticipate and then create want

Use social media to listen to what consumers are saying about your product, brand, industry, and competition.  This involves not just having a social media page like Facebook but actively monitoring mentions about a variety of topics related to your product, service, or industry.

Use web analytics to monitor how consumers are interacting with your website, what devices they access your site from, and from where on the planet (perhaps there’s a growing want for your product in another world market).

Use content marketing (read blogs) to discover who is already exerting influence on your audience and partner with them to create a trend.  If Nike had sold Air Jordan’s to the every basketball player in the entire basketball playing universe they would not have sold many shoes.  Instead Nike found Mars Blackmon (Spike Lee) who already had a major and credible voice in urban communities. When he said “Money..It has to be the shoes” kids believed him and that created a trend of wearing the shoes off court with slacks, jeans, suits, and tuxedos.

Update: 11/21/14

Here’s a great video I recently discovered of Pharrell Williams interview Spike

KISS – Googles Secret Sauce


Why does Google out perform Yahoo!, Bing, and all other search engines?

Because they keep it simple

Most people working in sales have learned the acronym KISS at some point.  It stands for Keep It Simple Salesperson.  It was taught to me as Keep It Simple Stupid.  Either way the point is if you can keep your presentations simple you have a good shot at winning.  And of all search engines Google does the best job at keeping it simple.

On the home page of Google today there are only 28 words against a white background.  Bing 68 against a full color picture and Yahoo! hundreds…I didn’t even bother to count, it’s a jumbled mess.

Is there a way for you to simplify your presentation, web page, elevator speech, proposal, etc.  If you can you will dramatically increase your chances at winning.