Five things I learnt about business in 2020 despite everything

2020 was certainly a year like no other and one many of us would prefer to write off.

I’m still pretty much a newbie in running my own business – just about three years. 2020 gave me learning opportunities which made me more confident and focused in achieving my business goals.

 

If you’re someone who is finding it hard to find your groove with digital marketing, take a look at my five top learnings.

  1. Be bold about getting to know people online and put an effort into fostering those relationships. I have made some great connections by attending conferences and courses and by joining in events like Twitter chats. Showing up online means I have given myself the best opportunity to be seen. I also value engagement so I set time aside for commenting on social media posts. I believe it’s just as important as posting your own content.

TIP: If you take time to join in conversations and engage on social threads, you’ll soon start making new acquaintances. Set aside time to be active on social media for short periods each day or at least 3 – 4 times a week.

  1. Broaden your connections. This is in no way a reflection on other social media managers but, once I realised I needed to go further than just connecting with them, my audience became more diverse and interesting. I was no longer just chatting with a whole load of people like me.

TIP: By spreading your social media wings and starting to engage in conversations with people who are outside of your industry, you’ll start to become involved in other networks. The great thing is that you will start being looked to as the expert in these new circles.

  1. Keep an open mind about everything and be prepared to explore. I have found reading, listening to podcasts and attending events this year has given me a broader perspective about social media marketing and marketing in general.  For sure this is impacting on the offers I put out and how I want to run my business.

TIP: If you feel your business needs a freshen up or an injection of something, be prepared to do some research and explore the possibilities. It may be that you would like to have some training, or you are looking for an app or tech to help you. You may even consider hiring an expert to come in and give you some support.

  1. Networking is key. I have found this beneficial in so many ways. Having to explain what my business is about to groups of strangers is good practice as an elevator pitch. I have more confidence to talk about my business and share my expertise.

TIP: If you can commit to a regular networking meeting each week for an hour, you’ll soon find that you start to establish the all-important ‘know, like and trust’ factor in your group. Get to know different people at networking sessions. Then engage on their content on social media and vice versa, to establish more conversation.

  1. Speak your own words and be yourself. Being honest and real has helped me to stay authentic (yes, I know we hate that word!) It has also meant that I can say what I’m thinking without fear of repercussions or worrying that someone doesn’t like me. I know I’m not going to be everyone’s cup of tea but I know I want to work with people who are my ideal clients. If someone doesn’t like what I’m talking about or how I’m saying it then, to be honest, that’s their gripe not mine.

TIP: You can’t be all things to all people so show up as the real you with your own thoughts and opinions.  People will want to do business with you if they see you as an honest and genuine person.

What’s your focus word for 2021? 

There’s of course so much more I could I mention. I’m well aware that giving a limited number of bits of information is a greater help in terms of processing. That’s the ex-teacher in me coming out!

I intend to continue learning in 2021. In fact ‘Exploration’ is my focus word for this new year. Gaining knowledge and finding new opportunities is an exciting prospect.

Have you given any thought to a word to help you in your business throughout 2021?

 

Would you like to know more about how to be seen online and attracting your target audience? I’d like to help you. I’m keen to see many more small business owners embracing personal branding and getting seen through effective digital marketing. Drop me a line here and let’s have a chat.

Why does your tone of voice matter in social media?

Answer your customers’ pain points through your social media posts and your marketing is more likely to convert to sales.

However, there are many business owners who understandably would rather hire someone to write their copy for them.

How do you appear as authentic as possible if someone else is writing for you?

The essence of using social media effectively is that it is personal, and it invites engagement and conversation. If you want your social media copy to sound as if you have written it, then how can someone else recreate your voice?

Some businesses will use automated bots to generate social media posts but this is about creating content that informs, educates and entertains – not just content for promoting and selling.

You need something that is intrinsic to your brand. It’s your tone of voice.

What is tone of voice?

If the business is clear about the kind of language it uses, the style of communication and the use of particular words and phrases, then its tone of voice will be very apparent. We can call this verbal identity.

  • Is your tone of voice formal, informal or even colloquial?
  • Are there particular phrases your business uses regularly?
  • Is your style friendly and familiar or practical and matter of fact?

Then on a deeper level:

  • Do you talk to your customers in the way they talk about you?
  • Have you asked them what they think about you through feedback and reviews?
  • What kinds of phrases do they use to show what it is they like and value about you?

Yes, finding your tone of voice will mean having a conversation with your audience. If you put the time in with them finding out what they like about you, this information will help you to develop your tone of voice.

It will be more real and speak to them in a way that resonates and grabs their attention. Don’t forget, if you don’t hold onto their attention, they will start to drift elsewhere.

What does your tone of voice add to your marketing strategy?

If your marketing strategy is built on what your business stands for (your vision, your mission, your values) then your tone of voice will be easy to identify and it will be authentic.

Be sure to always keep your target audience and ideal customers at the forefront whenever you are speaking. Your style and tone should resonate with them as you need to be able to communicate with them clearly.  Building that marketing focus of know. like and trust in a way they can relate to is key.

Once you have added your tone of voice or verbal identity to your marketing strategy, it will make creating content so much easier.

It will make it so much more straightforward when you want to outsource it too.

If you’d like to talk to me about developing an authentic tone of voice for your business or how to identify your ideal client, drop me a message on the Contact form.

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