“He came in, asked for Mike Columbus, and someone pointed out where I was… and he says ‘I know where he is, I know what he looks like…I’ve seen him all over the internet.'” – Mike Columbus
That… is the POWER of personal branding.
What is ‘Personal Branding’?
Whether you know it or not, whether you are actively engaging it or not, we all have a personal brand. Your personal brand is the value you offer the world. It’s what you stand for.
Having a personal brand isn’t your logo or website. Your personal brand is you. The logos and website are simply tools to help promote your brand.
Why is a personal brand important?
Mike Columbus, who recently aired on DealerRefresh, says “People need to know who you are before you sit down and talk to them.” By constantly engaging the customer and building authentic relationships, you’ll be at the top of a shopper’s mind when they are ready to make a purchase.
There’s competition between dealerships and on the floor. If you want to rise above the competition, you need to have a personal brand.
Creating and promoting your personal brand
Promoting your personal brand is an ongoing process. There are no shortcuts. Promoting your brand involves creating the best version of yourself and offering value.
As Jeff Kershner asks, “Are you going to be a professional salesperson?”
If you are serious about becoming a top performer on the sales floor, you need to invest time and money in yourself. This means ongoing training, networking, building real relationships, and creating an online presence.
The first step to building a personal brand is understanding yourself. What do you stand for? What value do you offer the world? Sales is about building trust, and trust starts with being authentic.
The next step is networking and building credibility. This includes going to events, public speaking, and showing yourself as an authority in your field.
Creating an online presence
Conveying your personal brand through an online presence can be extremely powerful. Here is how you can get started creating promoting your personal brand online:
1. Secure a domain name and create a website
2. Create social and professional network accounts (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc..)
3. Engage with your visitors
Knowing how to engage and how often will be a balance. Sites like Facebook have high engagement, while other platforms like Snapchat will target the younger generation. Mike Columbus recommends 4 platforms to engage your audience.
Having social proof, or testimonials, are extremely powerful. If you say it, they are skeptical, but if your clients say it, they will believe it.
What investments are you creating to build your personal brand?
How are you currently engaging with your audience that separates you from others?