It’s Not Who You Know – It’s Who Knows You
You are the beginning, middle and end of your business. You are your brand. If your potential customers don’t know you, they have no clue about your business. Too many entrepreneurs waste time trying to get “in the know”, schmoozing with the right people, going to the right events, taking pictures with the “gurus” of their field but those gurus aren’t your target market. They are not the ones who will be buying products and services. There’s a big difference between marketing and networking and they are not one and the same.
Networking with like-minded people is crucial to an entrepreneur’s growth level and rate in business. Connections with people who are where you want to be inspire, motivate and teach you. But there’s balance to all of this. What sense does it make to shell out thousands of dollars a year networking when you aren’t making many more thousands of dollars in new and returning business? Your results are in your profitability and if you’re doing a whole lot of networking but are not seeingh a whole lot of profitability, it’s time to do something different with your time.
Reduce the time spent networking and increase the time spent face-to-face “connecting” with your target market. You could be an expert in a field no one’s come close to touching but if the people who need your expertise don’t know that you exist, they have no way of seeking you out and becoming loyal customers. It’s not their job to seek you out and become loyal customers. It’s not their job to seek you out but it is your mission to reach out to them. That can only be done when you shift your mindset from “knowing the right people” and “having the right connections” to being the right person and connecting with people who need to know that you are.
It’s time for you to build a name for your business by building a name for yourself and no one can do that better or with more authenticity than you. You may not have the money to hire a PR firm but who you are, what you’re passionate about and what you’re an expert in is the best PR you could ever have. It’s time to toot your own horn and not just on the Internet. Get out in public. Talk to people. Share yourself with them and, remember, people buy from people they trust. They’ll only trust you if they feel like they know you.