There’s one thing that Donald Trump and Usain Bolt have in common (and no, it’s not running). They never fail to grab ‘Attention’ and as a result are ‘huge brands’ of their own.
The marketing landscape has changed, and fast. Distributorship of content is no longer in the hands of a select few but has become democratized with control being passed down to the masses. That’s people like you and me! And, if you’ve failed to realize how important this trend really is, you’re in for one of the biggest regrets you will ever face in your life.
It’s a land grab and people are jumping in fast. Attention has become the universal currency required for growth and social platforms and media houses are the exchanges that it’s traded on. Because trust me when I say this: There has never been a better or more critical time to build a brand.
The ones that got into the game years ago were the early movers. They saw the opportunity and acted quickly. They realized quickly that no matter what you are trying to do, whether to raise money for a charity, run for office or sell a product, you need the attention of the end consumer to do so. They are the influencers of today and hold leverage in this game.
If you run a business – your number one priority should be the ability to garner and keep the attention of others. It will help you magnify your results exponentially and bring about opportunities that you never thought existed.
How do you grab that Attention?
Well, my first piece of advice on this would be that you create content. And, whatever you do – DO NOT start with being ‘Salesy’. It’s cringy and you know it. When is the last time you actually enjoyed picking up the phone of someone you don’t know who’s trying to sell you something? The same philosophy applies when building your brand presence.
Start by creating helpful, educational, and entertaining content and if you’re really trying to sell something, the people you attract into your life will buy in the long term. My friend generates millions of dollars in real estate deals by playing Snooker with big shots. He plays Snooker and the sales just come because he enjoys the game and surrounds himself with the right people. The same philosophy applies to your approach when creating content. Build it around YOU.
Take pics, record an audio, or write about what you enjoy. Your life, your philosophies and your opinions will attract a community of like-minded people that will give you opportunities along the way like a trail of breadcrumbs.
Isn’t it an amazing thing that the content you create doesn’t even have to be related to what you’re selling? Once you realize this, new ideas will start to open up and you will think very differently.
Remember, ‘Attention’ is the name of the game early on…not sales.
How do you choose a platform or media outlet?
One wonderful thing about getting attention that ultimately leads to building a brand (and sales) is that there is no one path to success. There are multiple ways to get to the same destination. You must view this exercise i.e., getting attention and building your brand in that light. People can get to know you using multiple methods. Print Media works and so do Facebook ads. In the long term, the choice of distributorship should be dependent on your preferences and resources.
First, pick what you like to do. At a macro level, this falls into three categories.
- Do you like to write?
- Do you like to speak?
- Are you comfortable on Camera?
Once you know which of the above macro categories is the right fit, go all out with one or two platforms. For example, I like to write so I started with LinkedIn. The fundamental thing to remember is that when you start creating content to get attention; approach it with the mindset of being open-minded and experimental. No one really knows the right answer to what will connect and grab attention with your audience till you start. And the answers will often surprise you.
As you get into the minutiae of the platform you have chosen, you’ll also begin to understand your audience better and learn what makes them tick. For social platforms, the key is to remember that social media is after all, first and foremost, a communication tool. You’re meant to be social. So, spend as much time engaging as you do creating and posting.
By engaging with your audience in a helpful way, you’ll position yourself as an approachable and friendly authority in the field you are in. Do this enough times and people will go, “who is this person?” and then go look up your profile. That’s where the real growth of your brand lies so make sure to keep your profile optimized with proper messaging and end goals in mind.
A key takeaway for success with the ‘tactics’ stated above is to have the mindset of building a community. Try to make real friends with the people that approach you. I’ve learned from personal experience that some of the people that you attract will be truly extraordinary. Reciprocate their kindness, be inspired by them, cheer them on and convert your audience into a network of real relationships. At the end of the day, it’s not just about your follower count. It’s also about the networks you build along the way which snowball into a bigger audience and help you hit the goals you are trying to reach.
Rome was not built in a day
Don’t be in a rush. Your brand is about how someone feels the moment they interact with you or your business and making someone ‘feel’ a certain way takes time. No magic formula can make you a brand overnight. Just start and be consistent. Remember we are in the age of The Attention Economy. Build your brand and your business by leveraging it.
Email your queries to Uday at [email protected]