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How to Be Seen As an Expert by Your Customers

Ten Ways to be Viewed as an Expert in Your Field.

BY: MARK HUNTER| Originally Published on: DEC 22, 2020|CATEGORIES: SALES LEADERSHIPSALES MOTIVATIONSALES PROCESS


Every week, I share new ideas and strategies on how you can be a more effective salesperson. Today, I want to share how you can and should become a subject matter expert to your customers. Hit subscribe so you get all the new videos I release every week. I want you to engage and immerse yourself in this content, so you can be more successful.

I feel like I could be a subject matter expert to you, and you could then be a subject matter expert to your customers, so here are 10 ways to be seen as an expert by your customers:

1. Ten Burning Questions

What do I mean by this? What ten burning questions do your customers most likely need answers to?

If you want to be a subject matter expert, you have to be able to bring answers to their ten burning questions. It takes time. I also want you to write down ten burning questions. What ten burning questions do your customers have? Create answers to them as you also answer their ten burning questions. You’ll see how much that increases your level of knowledge and enables you to share that with them. That takes me to number two…

2. Create Key Lists

One of the things I do each week is put out a video of ten key things that you can do to become a better salesperson. I put these lists out there as a way to be seen as a subject matter expert in sales. You can do the same thing and be seen in the same way. Create key lists.

You’re probably saying that you just can’t share them with your customer. That’s not true. Yes, you can share it with them. Put together a document and then email it to them. Ask if you can share it with them. You’ll be surprised at how quickly they will start to see you in a different light. Also, put it out on LinkedIn, social media, a blog if you have one, whatever it might be. Create a key list so people can understand your expertise.

3. Ask Tough Questions

Subject matter experts are not shy to ask difficult questions. Don’t be afraid to ask the kinds of questions that a lot of people don’t even think about. The customer may respond with “Wow, I hadn’t thought about that.”

Subject matter experts are always willing to ask questions that the customer does not have the answer to nor do they have the answer to, but that’s exactly how they become a subject matter expert. Why? Because those kinds of questions push them, they push them to go further.

4. Share Insights

Pick up a piece of information and share it. I will routinely email or copy. It could be something you just saw in a book or online, in an article or something. Routinely, I try to share information that’s valuable and insightful.

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5. 30 Minutes / Day

Discipline yourself to spend 30 minutes every day learning about your industry, your niche. Learn what you need. Commit to doing this for 30 minutes each day, and in six months, you’ll be a subject matter expert. This will give you a deep dive into your industry consistently. Now, you’re not going to know everything. However, you’ll know more than 95% percent than everyone else.

6. SME Peers

Surround yourself with people that are also subject matter experts. Spend time with those that are experts in their field, in a variety of topics/subjects. Personally, I have certain people that I call when I need help on this or this, in this industry or that. I nurture these people, but I know who these people are, so I can call them. This allows me to expand my knowledge base to help me better serve my customers.

7. Multiple Contacts

Well, this takes SME contacts and blows it wide open. Not only do you want to associate with more subject matter experts, but you want to know as many people as possible. The more people who know you, the more people will call you. The more people call you, the more you’re able to share your insights. The more insights you share, the more you’ll be seen as a sales expert – knowing how it all works.

It doesn’t do you any good to be a subject matter expert who shares with no one. You always want to have multiple contacts. With every customer I work with, I want to have multiple people who I can reach out to. Keep in mind that not every customer will have the same number of multiple contacts, though.

In a short time, you can be seen as a subject matter expert when you talk to so many different people in a variety of areas. I can’t tell you the number of times when I’ve lost out on business because I didn’t do that. I also can tell you the numerous times I have gained business because I have done that.

8. Industry Associations

Are you involved with them? Are you connected? Do you even know what industry associations are? Industry associations are all involved, all designed around expertise. If you want to be an expert in your field, you need to engage with these groups. Now, your schedule and time might not allow you to become super engaged, but you should still know what they’re doing. Be an active contributor. Be a helper. Subject matter experts are those who give rather than get.  

9. Social Media

So, are you sharing your insights on LinkedIn? Are you sharing insights on various blog posts? I know a gentleman known without a doubt as a subject matter expert. He has five sights that he regularly goes out to. One of them is LinkedIn and the other four are industry sites. He focuses on them, and that allows him to be seen as a subject matter expert.

Subject matter experts are not worlded matter experts. They are very tight on one subject and the people that deal with that subject on a regular basis.

10. Universities

These come into play very simply. Your stature, your level increases dramatically when you can say that you have shared with this class or helped this professor. Look for various institutions – I can think of four or five right now that I am engaged with on a daily basis. I thoroughly enjoy working with them and it helps raise my stature as a subject matter expert.

There you go! Those are the ten things you can do now to work towards becoming a subject matter expert. I hope I’m seen by you as a subject matter expert. That is why I wrote the books, High-Profit Prospecting and A Mind for Sales. Pick up a copy of both today.

There is also an interesting article regarding being an expert in your field. Please go to =>7 Steps to Becoming an Expert in Your Field (entrepreneur.com)

Copyright 2020, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter” Sales Motivation Blog.  Mark Hunter is the author of A Mind for Sales and High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results.


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How To Boost Your Brand and Business From LinkedIn in 2021

5 Reasons Why LinkedIn Will Boost Your Personal Brand and Business in 2021

December 22, 2020 by Michelle Griffin Leave a CommentMichelle Griffin_LinkedIn

5 Reasons Why LinkedIn Will Boost Your Personal Brand and Business in 2021

by Michelle Griffin


For many years I thought LinkedIn was just the place to post your resume or look for a new and improved job.

Aside from promoting work‌ ‌events,‌ I rarely logged on and hardly posted. I didn’t think LinkedIn could help my already-established career.

Fast forward to earlier this year. I had recently left my long-time job to pursue my consulting side-gig full time and was looking for a way to connect with fellow marketers and meet potential clients in the mindset of the pandemic.

What I found surprised me. How had I missed out on this new and improved LinkedIn?

I soon started sending out connections and commenting on posts of interesting people whom I wanted to meet and learn from.

And it wasn’t too long before things started happening.

In just a few months, by interacting, engaging and offering insight, I met new colleagues, landed clients and was invited to speak on a podcast.

All by showing up daily on LinkedIn.

And the good news is you can do the same. Even‌ ‌if‌ ‌you’re‌ ‌new‌ ‌to‌ ‌LinkedIn ‌or‌ ‌have‌ ‌500+‌ ‌connections,‌ it can be a big boost to your career and client connections.

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Here’s how:

Get found online, faster

If a recruiter or future client looks you up online what do they find? With a LinkedIn profile, they’ll find you faster and in the top rankings of search pages. Try it for yourself: Google your name and see it appear in the top three search results.

If you have a blog, Google also gives authority to LinkedIn’s long-form articles. That means you can update your existing blog or content, add it to LinkedIn’s articles section and have a better chance of it being found.

It’s your digital reputation, not your digital resume

When Microsoft acquired LinkedIn in 2016 for $27 billion, it became more of a professional social networking site rather than a resume and recruiter site. Each month new tools and features are rolled out often to showcase your skills and feature your best work to potential clients.

Think of your LinkedIn profile as the digital story of your career. It’s your online reputation and proof of your personal and professional achievements. That’s why many people forgo business cards and use their profiles to highlight their blogs, published articles, videos, photos and best podcast episodes. 

Online networking is the new normal

This year showed us a digital presence is practically the ONLY way to meet and build relationships.

Gone are in-person weekly or monthly networking events, industry conferences and annual summits to connect with people who can move your career forward. 

When‌ ‌we‌ ‌can’t‌ ‌meet‌ ‌face‌ ‌to‌ ‌face,‌ ‌how‌ ‌are‌ ‌you‌ ‌going‌ ‌to‌ ‌network‌ ‌and‌ ‌market?‌ 

LinkedIn is this place. Currently, there are 760‌ ‌million‌+ professionals worldwide and thousands of new members are added weekly.

Check out these impressive stats and see how fast LinkedIn is growing top-tier professionals.

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It’s a friendlier and inclusive social site

It’s the business world so LinkedIn members are on their best behavior. Trolling, inappropriate messages and abusive behavior are not common. 

As one connection told me, “People on LinkedIn post and comment about stimulating things that I find interesting and help me improve personally and professionally.”

He’s right. 

I’ve met some of the friendliest, smartest and most encouraging connections on LinkedIn. And it’s not just people in my industry or country. From Australia, the UK and Canada, I’ve zoomed offline with professionals I would’ve never had the opportunity to meet in real life.

No matter your age, experience, country or industry, everyone can contribute and is warmly welcomed in the LinkedIn community.

Your Ticket to More Opportunities

You don’t have to have thousands of connections and followers to start seeing and making a difference. Even‌ ‌if‌ ‌you’re‌ ‌new‌ ‌to‌ ‌LinkedIn or if you haven’t logged on in years, just showing up and participating daily can make a noticeable difference to your personal brand.

LinkedIn can help you find:

A‌ ‌job‌ ‌you‌ ‌love

Perfect-fit clients

Awareness of your brand or business

Speaking‌ ‌opportunities

Investors‌ ‌to‌ ‌fund‌ ‌your‌ ‌next‌ ‌venture ‌

Influential‌ ‌people‌ ‌ready‌ ‌to‌ ‌collaborate‌ ‌with‌ ‌you‌

Let’s start connecting

I learned the hard way, wasted precious time and don’t want you to make the mistake I did. Start today so you can make your mark on the professional world.

I’d love to connect with you. Find me at https://www.linkedin.com/in/michellebgriffin.

Coming Soon: Ready to get going on LinkedIn? My follow-up article will give you the tips and tools to optimize your LinkedIn profile and boost your personal brand.

Michelle Griffin

Michelle Griffin is a personal brand strategist and StoryBrand Certified Guide who specializes in helping service-based leaders and consultants grow with clear messaging, compelling marketing and greater visibility online.

With more than two decades professional services experience in corporate, nonprofit and agency settings, she’s helped businesses of all sizes achieve successful results through branding, public relations and strategic marketing campaigns. Connect with Michelle on Linkedin@michellebgriffin and learn more at michellebgriffin.commichellebgriffin.com

Filed Under: Personal BrandingSocial MediaTagged With: clientsLinkedInLinkedIn networkingprofessional development

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How To Survive and Thrive During the Pandemic of Covid 19.

 
Starting a Business from Home is the Only Way to Survive and Thrive During the Pandemic of Covid 19.

Dateline: Creve Coeur, MO. USA.

By: Jeffrey L. Klump 10/03/2020


The world is much different than it was just one year ago.

People have gotten use to the new vocabulary such as “social distancing” and wearing masks.

Regardless of what political spectrum you may fall under, the economic implications are staggering.

Very few people are buying the propaganda that the economy is recovering.

We keep hearing, including at the most recent political debate, that the stock market is at an all time high.

That may be true, but the stock market has nothing to do with the real economy.

Massive jobs layoffs continue, and the lines at food banks are getting longer.

The most recent Gross Domestic Product(GDP) estimate is a staggering minus 31%. That number is huge and it maybe worse than that.

The United States economy needs to be retooling itself and getting ready to start producing items such as paper products and things that we have become way to dependent on other countries, especially China, but I do not see that happening.

Our trade balance with China is still out of whack which means we are way too dependent on them for basic materials including toilet paper, kleenex, scott towels, and the list goes on.

The United States for far too long has become a consumer nation and this needs to be reversed immediately, otherwise, our dependence on other countries will continue.

We must become a producer nation once again if we are to have any sort of the American Dream in our future.

That is where small business plays a huge role. The problem is, with the new rules and fear of the Covid 19 pandemic, that has put a stranglehold on small businesses from operating as normal and profitable. This in turn could lead to more jobs layoffs.

Those who are not mechanically inclined like carpenter’s, contractor’s, mechanic’s, tool & die maker’s, need to develop their own new skills from home.

There are literally thousands of ways to make money from home or online and not working for someone else. You could have an idea that could be worth a lot of money just rolling around in your head, and you never thought twice about doing anything about it.

Then there are already established companies looking for people to sell or promote their products for them.

One of the keys to creating long term wealth is by selling something or investing in something that produces monthly residual and passive income.


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Don’t look to Washington to save you. You should know by now that politicians only care about themselves and enriching themselves and their friends and financial backers.

Get together with your family and friends and develop a plan where you can work together on starting a business from home and then monetize it and share with others.

Learn to be dependent on yourselves and try to learn new skills that you can use and that you can eventually teach to others.

Most politicians and government bureaucrats have never started a business or been in business for themselves. They do not have any answers when it comes to improving our economy and helping you survive and thrive.

The only answer in Washington is for you to become dependent on them. That approach has never worked in any other country before and it won’t work here either.

Corporate layoffs are continuing. The need for people to earn additional income has never been greater. The new online classifieds ads list to help you make money, save money, and improve your life, is Jeff’s List.

So many people have hidden skills and talents that they never have tried to use before. Most don’t know they have them. Many have been told your idea won’t work and so they do nothing because no one supports them with positive reinforcement. Just think if Einstein or the greatest inventor, Nikola Tesla were told that, and they listened to them. Where would we be?

The current environment of Covid 19 is not going away regardless of who is in the White House.

You can, however, survive and thrive during the pandemic called Covid 19. All you need to do is believe in yourself and learn new skills and you will be on your way.


 

 

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How To Change Your Life

The Two Meetings with Gary Vaynerchuk That Changed My Life

Four lessons in life and business with one of the world’s savviest marketers.

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The Two Meetings with Gary Vaynerchuk That Changed My Life
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September 21, 2020 6 min read

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Savvy entrepreneurs are familiar with Gary Vaynerchuk books like #AskGaryVeeCrush It and Crushing It. Those in the social media world know Gary Vaynerchuk as a brilliant marketer and entrepreneur. I had the opportunity to see Vaynerchuk speak before he was a social media phenomenon with eight million Instagram followers, and the lessons he taught that day are ones I still reference today.  

It was 2007, and I was one of a group of 300 entrepreneurs who saw Vaynerchuk at his very first public speaking appearance. We had heard of this crazy Russian with the funny name, but none of us knew what to expect. I remember sitting there listening to Vaynerchuk speak and thinking, “This guy is amazing – but I have no idea what he’s talking about.”

Social media was still a burgeoning industry in 2007, and frankly, pretty much his entire talk went right over my head. So he finishes with his speech (no notes or PowerPoint, of course) and then says to the audience: “Any questions?”

I looked around the room, and there was an awkward silence. No one raised their hand. So I slowly put my hand up. Vaynerchuk calls on me. I gulp.

I said, “Well Gary, everything you just said was brilliant. But I have no idea what you just said.”

The audience burst into spontaneous laughter and applause. I think a lot of other people were thinking what I was thinking and were glad I spoke up. Vaynerchuk’s response is just one of the brilliant lessons he’s taught me in the decade-plus since then. 

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Give away your content for free

When I asked the question, Vaynerchuk didn’t miss a beat. He says to me: “What do you do?”

I said, “I’m a business coach. I help entrepreneurs grow their business and have more financial freedom and time freedom.”

He says, “Perfect! Do you sell books, online courses and coaching programs?”

I said yes.

He says, “Great! Now I want you to start giving away all that stuff for free.”

I sat there, dumbfounded. Remember, this was back in 2007. Today, everyone gives away content to bring attention to their brands and companies. But back then, it seemed like a new concept, at least the way he was saying it. 

Long story short: I followed Vaynerchuk’s advice. (My momma didn’t raise no dummy.) I started giving away my content on platforms like FacebookYouTube, in videos, on my blog and on podcasts. Following his advice has become one of the cornerstones of my customer acquisition model, arguably the most important one.

Related: The Headline That Made Gary Vaynerchuk’s Head Explode

Put family first

Soon after that first life-changing meeting with Vaynerchuk, I had a second opportunity to spend time with him — this time, when I hosted him in my car. Vaynerchuk was about to go on his very first book tour, so I called his office, asked for his assistant and told them: “Hey, I’m a huge Gary Vee fan, and I’d love to host him while he’s here in Ohio.”

His assistant said, “Great! We were actually looking for somebody to do that.”

“I’m your man!” I said.

I remember how focused and driven Vaynerchuk was, but the thing that stood out to me the most was how he put family first. Vaynerchuk would take phone call after phone call — with CEOs, celebrities, his staff. Because he was in my car, I couldn’t help hearing his end of the conversation. During many of these important phone calls, he’d say this: “Sorry man, I gotta call you back. My wife’s calling.” Then he would click over to speak with his wife, and without the slightest hint of irritation, he’d say: “Hi honey, what’s up?”

Vaynerchuk’s Twitter profile says “Family First,” but that’s something many people in our industry say without actually following through. But I can tell you from firsthand experience that Vaynerchuk does indeed put his family first. 

Related: Gary Vaynerchuk and 8 Business Moguls Reveal Their Secrets for Building an Unstoppable Brand

Be present

One of the other things I noticed during that trip was how Vaynerchuk never hurried anyone. He was exactly the opposite of many of the divas you see on social media today. For example, after his book signing, I took him to a party that was held in his honor and filled with “Vayniacs” (passionate Gary Vaynerchuk fans).

You might expect the guest of honor to be “too busy” or “too important” to talk to everyone. Well, in many cases, you’d be right. But not our man Gary Vee.

Nope, Vaynerchuk took the time to talk with every single person who wanted to talk with him, no matter how long it took. He was completely present with each person. He looked them in the eyes and really listened to what they were saying. 

Related: Gary Vaynerchuk Is Showing Us How to Make It as an Entrepreneur

Be yourself

One big lesson I learned from spending time with Vaynerchuk is that you have to be yourself (as cliché as it sounds). I swear I’m not making this up, but in the two days I spent with him, I never once saw him go to the bathroom; he ate about enough to fill a hummingbird; and according to his schedule, he slept maybe four hours a night.

I finally asked him about that, and he admitted, “I’ve always had a weird metabolism. I don’t need to eat or sleep much.” (I didn’t press him about the bathroom part.)

That might work for him, but I eat like a horse and need sleep, like a LOT of sleep. Don’t try to be like Vaynerchuk if that’s not your body or your metabolism. 

I’ll always be grateful for the opportunity to spend time with Vaynerchuk and learn from him, as well as for the life and business lessons he taught me that I continue to use today.