Posted by: brandextenders | October 5, 2011

Guess Who is Googling You?

Good salespeople regularly Google their prospects to learn what they can prior to making the first call. But did you ever consider your prospects might be doing the same thing? Googling these days is a two-way street where both salespeople and their prospects are doing their due-diligence on who is calling on them.

What does this mean for you as a salesperson? It means a prospect’s first impression is going to be what they can learn about you online, not what they see when you walk in the door. So here’s a hint…Google yourself, now.

What did you find? I did this on myself recently and the first thing that showed up was my profile on Google+ followed by my LinkedIn profile, Twitter account, Quora and Facebook accounts. The next one was my hockey stats which is obviously a different Steve Woodburn since I can hardly ice skate much less play hockey.

Each of the links noted is a social media venue which means if you aren’t on social media yet, you need to be. Google favors both LinkedIn and Twitter and so those rank high when you do a search. The question to ask yourself is what do you want your prospects to know about you? Here are a few things to keep in mind as you go about setting up your social media presence.

  • LinkedIn should be work related with a flattering picture and professional summary of what you do. Customers and prospects should be able to understand what you can do for them and the results you’ve created. Ask current customers for recommendations so others can see you do what you say you can do.
  • Twitter feeds should show you are engaging others in your area of expertise. Links you provide should be relevant and provide information that’s valuable for various segments of your business. If you want to tell people what you’re eating, who you’re dating or add political comments, do it with a personal account.
  • I don’t use Facebook much for business however remember anyone can find your Facebook account if they also have one.
  • Other social media venues should be kept professional and relevant to your business and career.

As I always tell my two teenagers, don’t put anything online that you wouldn’t want future college or sports recruiters, employers, customers, prospects or anyone else to see. Pictures of you trashed with a lampshade on your head don’t give confidence to prospects that you will be looking out for their best interests. Everything you put online can be and will be seen by others so use discretion. As Erin Bury, the Community Manager on Sprouter puts it, “Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t want plastered on a billboard with your face on it.”

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