Document your anniversary and spread the word. Take photos and create informal videos of the activities underway. For example, compare the new anniversary logo with the one in use and describe the process of designing it. All events should be captured; these photos and video can be shared on your company’s website and social media accounts.
Broaden your audience; two can speak together. Consider teaming up with a client, or referral source, to tap into the market of their peers. Podcast hosts, webinar producers and conference organizers will view your co-presenter as someone who has their finger on the pulse of what’s happening in their industry or their profession, giving you additional credibility as a speaker.
Circulate your nuggets of wisdom as widely as possible. The ideas you share in digital formats, like articles, email newsletters and e-books, are easily repurposed to other online platforms, such as blogs, and distributed via social media accounts. Consider speaking to groups and video, as well.
When someone lands on your website, you don’t know where they are in their buyer’s journey. Accordingly, your website’s content must address the visitor at each stage in their buying process.
Janet is a highly experienced author and speaker with whom I’ve had the pleasure of working at my continuing legal education nonprofit. Janet has authored several articles aimed at providing readers with practical advice and guidance about marketing, networking, speaking, writing, leveraging social media, and connecting with reporters, among others. Her ability to dissect each […]
I didn’t fully realize the benefits of a monthly newsletter and feared that writing one would be too time consuming. Reading Janet Falk’s newsletter for several months finally persuaded me to give it a try. To my delight, my first newsletter paid off immediately when several lapsed clients were reminded of their goals and got […]
An introduction from a known source may make the difference in booking a speaking engagement. This outreach has four steps:
1. Assemble a list of trade associations and professional membership groups where you are likely to meet your target audience. Or compile a wish list of companies and organizations that are potential clients.
2. Locate the appropriate contact, President or Chair of the Program Committee, and email them regarding your interest in speaking on a few subjects to their group.
3. When the group’s officer does not respond, identify a mutual contact of any officer of the group and ask them to introduce you, following the template.
4. When this intermediary agrees to do so, send them a lightly revised version of your original correspondence with the organization so it may be copied and emailed to the group’s officer.
I’ve sat through a lot of networking meetings with well-meaning business people reciting their all-about-me elevator pitches. Mine was better than most, but with so low a bar, that still didn’t make it good. It just didn’t deliver any real value to the audience. Janet’s ideas helped me energize my pitch, sharpen its focus, and […]
Prepare an evergreen newsletter article. An evergreen article is one that is always relevant and not tied to the calendar or a news event. It’s neither in step nor out of step. Knowing you have an article on the shelf will give you peace of mind when your plate is so full that your newsletter plops onto the floor.
Janet’s monthly newsletter is a treasure trove of business growth ideas. It is the only newsletter that I receive from clients and business partners that I even take the time to look at. It is a true reflection of the benefits that one gets from working with Janet. I highly recommend that anyone looking to […]
A directory listing, like an elevator pitch, offers a bare minimum of information. You have to engage in conversation to flesh out the details. To start the relationship with a fellow member, introduce yourself by email. Focus on YOU, the reader/member, and establish shared interests. Your goal is to have the next conversation.
Hold a pre-meeting meeting. Arrange to meet your guest for a coffee 30-minutes before the meeting. Use this time to re-connect and catch up on their latest news. Hear what their agenda for the meeting might be. Plan to work the room together and maximize the moment.
The best times to call may be at 9:55 am and 1:55 pm. Try calling just before the hour marker when your connection might have a few moments before going into a meeting. Your conversation may be brief enough to set up the next call.
Google has nearly 90% of the online search market in the US, but it is not the only game in town. Look also at Yahoo, Bing and DuckDuckGo. Yes, there will be considerable overlap. You may, nevertheless, be surprised by what you turn up there.
I’ve known Janet for over a decade. She posses a depth of experience in public relations and marketing and whenever we come into contact, I learn something new. So many consultants offer only boilerplate solutions to organizational challenges. Janet doesn’t. I spend a lot of time reading a variety blogs, social media posts, reports, etc. […]
Confirm your emails speak to the reader. Read one of your recent emails to a potential client, or one you received. Highlight in red the words I, MY, WE, OUR Then highlight in yellow the words YOU and YOUR. When you are done, the email should display more yellow words than red. If not, take a stab at inverting some of those sentences to address the interest of the reader.
Podcast hosts are always looking for guests; accordingly, write an email to the host that shows why YOU would be a great resource to their audience.
1. Refer to your shared interest in the subject that is the focus of the podcast and mention that you have listened to previous episodes.
2. Cite one that is closely aligned with your proposed topic or name a colleague who appeared on the show.
3. Indicate how you will provide a fresh look at a specific subject.
4. Remember to state you will actively promote the episode to attract more listeners.
This approach will make you a highly attractive guest.
Try ALL FIVE strategies and then focus on the ones where you feel most comfortable. Networking may be your favorite and speaking may give your stomach butterflies. Or vice versa. The e-book gives examples of how you can take some practice swings and become more comfortable with the approaches you don’t ordinarily use.
Focus on the reader. Shift the focus of your content from I and WE to YOU. That helps the reader connect with you and hear you talking directly to them.
Promote the benefit of working with you in the first half of the sentence and then explain how you will get the job done in the second part or the following sentence.
Turn your presentation into an e-book. When you prepare a workshop on a subject, you will pull many ideas together. An e-book is a terrific way to share them.
Refer to the holiday season without specifying the observance of a specific faith. In America’s culturally diverse society, you can not assume that others celebrate the same holiday as you, whether Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa or Diwali. Popular images include candles, which brighten the darkest months of the year and are prominent in each holiday. Photos of winter scenes are also appropriate.
Take the reader by the hand and guide them through the list by using categories. Don’t make them scour the list in search of a name that aligns with their business or problem.
Janet Falk has such fabulous ideas in her newsletters. I save nearly every one.
Make it easy to contact you by putting your phone number and a link to an email address on EVERY PAGE of your website, in addition to a Contact page. Simply place them in a colored border at the top of the page. Put them on your LinkedIn profile, Facebook page and other digital assets, too.
Display ALL your newsletters on your website, not only the current issue. (The person you met in July may find your March newsletter of interest.)
Create a downloadable tip sheet, with your contact information and logo. (You may choose to require an email address first.)
Save your published articles and guest blog posts as PDFs with the notation As previously published and the appropriate copyright. Assemble them in one place on your website for easy download.
Create a list of your appearances on podcasts and speaking engagements.
Are you doing things the way they have always been done? Take a closer look at the rationale for following the ways of the past using the five W’s:
Who said this is the way to do it? (Perhaps it was someone who’s long gone.)
What will happen if it’s done differently — or not at all?
When must a change be made? (Is there a deadline?)
Where can you gather support (buy-in or funding) to make a change?
Why will a new way be better?
Tips to improve your recorded voicemail greeting:
State your name (and company) so the caller can confirm she reached the party she seeks.
Invite the caller to please leave a phone number and message. State that you will return the call as soon as possible.
If this is your office landline, consider leaving your cell phone number — enunciated slowly and perhaps repeated — so the caller might text you or reach you at that number, in case it is an urgent matter.
Here’s how you can say your cell phone number at a pace that others can follow. Write the number as words; mine is three-four-seven-two-five-six-nine-one-four-one.
#Hashtag. Filter. Read. These simple steps are the best way to select the most relevant posts. Another quick way is to click on the arrow in the upper right corner of your LinkedIn feed labeled Sort by. There are two options: Top and Recent. See which one works best for your interests.
Make a list of the many projects and tasks on your plate. Prioritize them by client score. That is, are they necessary for current clients? Will they attract future clients?
When you prioritize the activities from your Work Pie of Time, you will see which ones are the best use of your valuable time. Some can be handled by others and some may even be set aside, not to re-surface for a while. That’s okay. Not now does not mean never.
Thank you, Janet Falk, for the smart, strategic information you provided on public relations and business communications. I now have excellent action steps to implement. I recommend Janet to all business owners who want to seriously improve their marketing materials and communications. Sign up for her newsletter, too. Janet is a total pro.
Create a giving appointment in your daily calendar. Research shows that keeping a gratitude journal for 15 minutes a day, three times a week, can enhance your feeling of happiness. By giving to others in your professional circles, you will give them a boost that supports their business, plus improve your own mood.
Consider how you can intentionally create more word of mouth by tapping into what is unexpected, memorable and sharable.
Email is the way. Whether the email newsletter is read that same day or at another time, the subscriber sees your name and mentally records the fact that you entered their In box. Now that it is more difficult to conduct business face to face and in person due to COVID, it is imperative that you remain top of mind among your connections. When relationships are reinforced by periodic email, it is more likely you will be remembered for a future contact or receive a positive response to your next phone call.
Send a holiday e-card to your many contacts. A simple text conveys greetings for the holiday season, plus the note that you have made a donation to Nonprofit Group in their name, in appreciation of your relationship.
Two can play the Marketing game better than one. After you team up, thank the client and celebrate. When you speak at an event or write an article, acknowledge the shared success. Post a summary as an update on LinkedIn, with a link to the article or the event announcement. You may also mention your article and presentation in your newsletter, again, thanking the client. When you attend the networking event or the trade association’s program, take photos that feature you and the client. Both of you can post the snapshots to your social media accounts.
Our firm had been debating the marketing/brand awareness value of the holiday cards that we sent out each year when we read Janet Falk’s newsletter on the subject. […] Janet helped us design a new card that stood out from the pack — with our firm name on the cover and a classy message inside. […]
I enjoy reading Janet’s newsletters. They’re pithy and always have good ideas that I can use in my business.
Search online directories to find the podcasts most relevant to your target market. Also, search for Ten Best Podcasts in (name of industry).
These are among the most common networking groups. Consider letting your clients know about an upcoming program of possible interest, so you may attend together.
1. Professional membership associations
2. General business organizations
3. Interest groups (e.g., women-owned, ethnic)
4. Community service organizations
Plan your post-conference activity. Take selfie-photos with the attendees you meet and event hosts. Post the pictures individually on LinkedIn with the name (@New Contact) and refer to the idea you discussed. Email the photo (and perhaps the link to the post) to the person with a note about your great conversation, along with the article or contact you promised. Invite them to connect with you on LinkedIn. You’ve started an in-person conversation; keep up the momentum.
When you prepare to give a talk, remember to promote it before and after the event. Assemble a list of three to five takeaways. Recruit someone to take a photo, if there is no official photographer. As an attendee, plan to take notes AND photos.
Post the highlights of the event and a photo, with a substantive caption, on your LinkedIn profile and in relevant groups, plus on your Twitter account.
Make a list of your professional membership organizations, networking groups, LinkedIn groups and other communities. Peruse the membership directory and cross-check those names in your LinkedIn network. If you are not yet connected, compose a connection request to introduce yourself, citing your mutual association. (Note: I am currently engaged in this outreach with a 90-member virtual group; about one-half have accepted my invitation.) When you are already connected on LinkedIn, and it has been a while since your last interaction, get a meaningful conversation started.
Your free giveaway can keep on giving. Once prospects receive the link to the giveaway, or download the freebie, it is easy for them to share it with their colleagues and other contacts. This results in a wider distribution. Even if you may not know where the giveaway has been sent, by using a link shorten-er, you can track the number of subsequent clicks.
When your co-presenter for a speaking engagement is a client, a referral source or a networking contact, you provide a more comprehensive view that also aligns with the participants. Plus, the interplay between two speakers –- when one asks the other a question, for example –- enlivens the session and keeps the attendees engaged.
Prepare for your podcast interview by assembling a list of topics, illustrating them with examples and using visual imagery to spice up your language. After a series of points, circle back to summarize them. These tips will make your remarks more memorable.
Make it easy to find an available date on the calendar by blocking out federal and state holidays, plus days of religious observance. The website www.calendarlabs.com displays religious calendars for 2018, so you can quickly confirm a date is holiday-free.
Instead of the default LinkedIn blue background, make it True Blue You. Get the LinkedIn background format for the DIY-er. Open a free account on Canva; there is a LinkedIn background template, plus there are formats for other social media platforms. Experiment with different text, fonts, colors and images. When you are ready, save the file; then have a design professional review and polish your work for viewing on a computer and on a tablet.
You keep in touch with industry colleagues, current or former clients and business contacts, among others. When one of them introduces you to someone, who becomes a new client, congratulate yourself. Give yourself the credit you deserve. That is a referral from your network. That is not word-of-mouth.
Look at the bigger picture from the perspective of a dentist, landlord and supermarket clerk. What is their desire or need in the community? For themselves? For their business? Which are the most pressing issues for them regarding time and money? Invite a dentist, landlord or clerk for a coffee chat, ask these questions and listen as you put yourself in her shoes.
Make an appointment with yourself to address one of the seven Communication goal questions each day for the next week. As a reminder, when setting a Communication goal, the acronym S M A R T guides you to successful completion of the goal: Specific, Meaningful, Action Oriented, Realistic and Timely.
When you agree with and like another’s LinkedIn post, make this opportunity work for you. Take the time to respond to the person and the discussion, as you like it. COMMENT to indicate: what you agree or disagree with; how this confirms or disproves the trend; what the discussion overlooks; how this relates to another topic or lesson learned; why this is or is not a best practice; or any other interesting aspect.
Photos of a destination appear barren and forlorn without visitors. Putting people in photos will attract and retain the reader’s attention. It will lead her to imagine herself on the scene and ideally prompt a visit to your destination.
If the annual report is dead, and is not to be produced, it’s time for the nonprofit to devise — and revise — other communication vehicles to ensure that newer supporters are fully informed about the breadth and depth of programs and services. Here’s how.
Everyone should review these tools and accounts in an Annual Communications Audit. Approach various social media platforms from the perspective of someone who is not familiar with your company and services. Where might they look for information (website, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter)? What would they find there? Is the content current (timeless or within the last week)? Take a few minutes to check the latest entries on your LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter accounts, and others that your audiences visit.
Posing problem and solution questions will highlight the types of issues that the respondent likes to tackle, the approaches she offers and the clients she targets. Based on the answers, you may determine how this person meshes with your contacts and resources.
One week before you attend a networking event sponsored by a membership organization, contact key officers and committee chairs to apprise them of your interest in the group. The Program Chair, Membership Chair and Communications Chair, as well as the chairs of any committee that aligns with your profession, will be eager to meet you. At the event, ask them to introduce you to the President of the association, which enhances their stature and helps you join the inner circle of leaders.
To lead a workshop that will attract new clients, look beyond the membership of a professional organization and the four walls of a classroom. Develop an interactive session and offer it to your connections for their professional development and that of their peers. At this contact’s office, you’ll collect their colleagues’ cards and their appreciation.
Tap into your network for advice and your own brain-stretching. Networking meetings are not only about individuals and their presentations. It’s the collection of multi-disciplinary perspective each one brings to the table. Informally advising your colleague will help you exercise your brainstorming muscles, build trust among contacts and garner ideas to develop your own business.
When writing an article, an author or reporter traditionally thinks of the five W’s – Who, What When, Where and Why, plus How – as questions to be answered.
Consider how that familiar paradigm looks when the reader is put at the center of the discussion.