Your reputation. It’s crucial when you’re growing your business. We all know what happens when a good name takes a knock. (Need I say VW?)
So how do you come to people’s notice in the first place – and stay on their radar? You need to linger in their minds for the right reasons. Not because you’ve fiddled with the software in their car.
Know your defining characteristic.
The Oxford Dictionary describes reputation as “a widespread belief that someone or something has a particular characteristic”.
Your company will attract the attention of potential clients because you’re distinctive in some way. You might have a 100% record in hitting your deadlines. Your teams could be brilliant at solving tricky problems. Or customers might look forward to meeting you because you’re full of good ideas.
Working out your company’s defining trait is the first step towards building your reputation. The trait that stays with me after talking to the subject of this post is ‘generosity’.
“What the hell is a podcast?”
Those words bring a wry smile to Jason Woodford’s face. Jason is the founder and CEO of SiteVisibility. Like me, he was a panellist on the ‘Growing Your Reputation’ conversation at this year’s Growth Summit in Brighton.
Share your expertise.
In the digital marketing world, Jason’s company has an enviable reputation for its generosity of spirit. SiteVisibility’s good name is partly rooted in the fact that it gathers the latest thinking about its sector and shares it in its weekly, world famous Internet Marketing Podcast.
The high calibre of its contributors makes the podcast a brilliant resource. (I’ve just been listening to an interview with one of the leading lights of content marketing in the States, Robert Rose. I’m one of more than 2 million people who have downloaded a SiteVisibility podcast.)
Build a following.
And yes, one of the aims behind the podcast is to build up a community of interested followers, who might turn into business leads. Having said that – and having worked on weekly BBC programmes myself – I know that producing high quality recordings on a regular basis takes planning, determination and a large dose of generosity.
The funny thing is, if you’d mentioned the word ‘podcast’ to Jason a few years ago, he would have said… Well, I’ll let him tell his story:
Improve your standing.
In that three minute conversation with Jason, I took away several insights on how to grow a good reputation:
- Do something different. If, like SiteVisibility, you’re one of the first to do it in a different way, so much the better.
- Once you’ve pinpointed exactly why you’re different, be consistent. SiteVisibility has been tenacious about keeping its podcast going, through thick and thin. But it’s been worth it in terms of building credibility.
- Be authentic. Don’t do something differently for the sake of it. Do it because you know it will bring genuine benefits to your clients. Then watch your reputation fly.
Your company’s defining trait?
When you’re knee-deep in the day to day, it’s often difficult to be clear about what that trait is.
What is it exactly that makes you stand out and builds your reputation?
Gaining that clarity is the subject of a future post.
If you enjoyed reading this post, you may like…
I recorded this quick interview at the 2015 Brighton Summit. It’s an example of how a day-long business event can generate lots of website content for the weeks that follow. I’ve dubbed events like these ‘contentferences’.
If the spoken word is your thing, listen to these moving frontline stories, recorded by students at the University of Sussex.
If you like a mix of visuals and audio, this post – about one of the judges on The Big Painting Challenge – includes photos, audio and video.