Why Broadcast to Your CEO Network?

PPP PRD 234 3D peopleGlobal Announcement thumb Why Broadcast to Your CEO Network?

Let’s first define what is “broadcasting to your network.”  Then we can talk about what the value is – although you will have probably already come to that conclusion or understanding as I am talking about a definition of broadcasting.

 

Vistage and TEC Chairs Broadcasting Content

In today’s marketing world, the technique of broadcasting information goes by the name of content marketing The use of content to market and brand yourself is the “new normal” in social media marketing circles. Social media has given us the opportunity to expand our content like little ripples in a pond when we skip a stone into the water. Prior to the last few years – broadcasting for the masses has never been an option for individuals or entrepreneurial companies without deep pockets for print, radio, or tv advertising.  Historically, we were forced to rely primarily on email.

You now can broadcast your content into your Facebook feeds, LinkedIn status updates, and Twitter stream so that everyone following you can read it if they stumble across it when you post it.

This broadcasting is a passive form of marketing. It gives your friends, followers, and connections an opportunity to see, read, and engage with your content whenever they desire. Your prospects like this since it’s an unobtrusive marketing tactic.

The simple idea behind broadcasting (content marketing) is that in the “Top Of Your Sales Funnel, your prospects in your target niche can read about the key issues important to them – with you as their trusted filtering source, thought-leader, source of reliable information, and framer of issues. If your content appeals enough to them, they may take the first step of downloading one of your articles, tools, ebooks, or other content which begins to move them to the “Middle of the Sales Funnel” for engagement. Phrased in more crass terms – you’re throwing your stuff against the wall hoping a few people will “bite” on it.

As comical as that approach sounds, it’s been proven to work very well because so many of your prospects get their content off the internet and use it to validate, verify, and vet who you are. Do it well by producing EPIC, inspiring, and thoughtful content, and enough prospects will tell you they want more at a deeper level – thus begins the process of “engagement and interaction”.

Effective broadcasting is not sharing links of articles you find interesting. It’s taking those articles that others have written and adding a layer of your own insight or perspective to the article. You’re adding something you feel that your network should hear about – but you’re giving context to the article by showing your network why it’s important to them.

There are numerous tools that automate the process of collecting content, giving you tools to add insight, context, or annotate the original message. Obviously, you’re giving full attribution to the original author through these tools so no one would accuse you of plagiarism. These tools also automate the process of posting the content into your networks for LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. My personal favorite is a tool called Scoop.it.

 

Broadcasting Value Proposition for Vistage and TEC Chairs

In addition to adding insight to content that your network might find valuable, I also recommend you inject into your stream of broadcasting some original content through blogging. As a Chair, this might include your insights about a recent speaker presentation, an interesting issue that surfaced in issue processing, or perhaps a case study of one of your members who took the recommendations from their group and implemented change.

I typically recommend a 4-1 ratio: for every 5 pieces of content you curate and add insight/perspective, you should be publishing 1 piece of original content – usually this will take the form of a blog post of 350-500 words in length. Your goal should be 15 minutes a day of curating and broadcasting content and 1 hour per week writing an original blog post.

What’s the value of this time investment? Why spend roughly 2 hours a week to broadcast content to your network?

  1. Your network treats you as “out of sight, out of mind.” For the folks that don’t sign up immediately as a Vistage/TEC member, you’ve got to stay “top-of-mind” with them on a continuous basis. Just collecting names in LinkedIn is a worthless exercise. Study after study has proven, your prospects will begin to trust you more based on the quality of content you publish.
  2. How do you differentiate what you do? There are many options available to CEOs of entrepreneurial companies. You’re competing against YPO, EO, Tab, Renaissance Forums, and multitude of consultants and coaches. How does the value of Vistage/TEC membership get communicated and reinforced. Your content demonstrating the value your current members have received is a powerful marketing message.
  3. Part of the reason members join your Vistage/TEC group is the trust they have in you to help guide them. Many individuals require a long ramp to build up this level of trust. You don’t have the time to invest to meet each CEO prospect over and over if they don’t sign up to be a member of your group immediately. Broadcasting allows you to reach and communicate with your entire network continuously – moving some of the “slower-to-trust” CEOs to engage with you.
  4. You build “social proof”. Many CEOs will turn to the Internet and type your name. When hundreds of blog posts and shared pieces of content layered with your personal insights come back as hits about issues facing CEOs – they realize you are a powerful voice in helping CEOs to become more effective. When all they see are a couple of hits for your LinkedIn Profile and Vistage Village Profile, they turn off – or worse – they seek another more active voice as a trusted source of information. Google Barry Deutsch and you’ll see hundreds, if not thousands of hits come back regarding hiring best practices. This is a powerful differentiator. You want your network contacts to be saying “I see you everywhere!” I get at least a dozen leads every month based on prospects searching the Internet for hiring best practices.
  5. Broadcasting is a high leverage activity. You extend your content through your existing network. They take the information you publish and share with their networks, who then take that content and share it with their networks, who then… – you get the idea – again, like ripples in pond, your immediate networks on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook become your ambassadors for sharing your knowledge, expertise, and thought-leadership.

 

Downside and Next Steps for Broadcasting to CEO Networks

What’s the downside to the strategy of broadcasting content to your network.

  • It’s time-consuming. At a minimum it requires 2 hours a week of work to do it well – creative, thought provoking, intellectually stimulating, challenging, writing.
  • It requires a long-term commitment and discipline. You’ll not see results in 3 or 6 months. It takes years to build up a momentum or snowball effect of having broadcast hundreds of pieces of content.

The big question is whether the benefits outweigh the personal time commitment. The other question you’ve got to ask is: What if everyone else is doing this now – will I be at a competitive disadvantage in a couple of years?

Have I provided enough of a case to justify broadcasting or content marketing? If so, what’s your specific plan to get started?

Barry Deutsch

Take Our 15 Minute Review of Your LinkedIn Profile

 Magnet to Attract CEOs to Vistage TEC Group Membership Take Our 15 Minute Review of Your LinkedIn Profile

Is your LinkedIn Profile capable of attracting CEOs like a magnet?

Do you get 20 plus CEOs looking at your profile every few days?

Is your LinkedIn Profile a COMPELLING marketing document that excites and engages potential CEOs or is it a boring, mundane, lackluster, unimaginative, unimpressive, depressing and partial regurgitation of your resume?

Your LinkedIn Profile is the first place potential CEOs for your group go to visit when you attempt to engage with them, OR when your name is referred to them. They either get to your LinkedIn Profile directly on LinkedIn by searching on your name, OR they Google your name, and the first listing that comes back is your LinkedIn Profile.

You’ve got one shot at making a positive first impression on-line. Are you blowing it with a below average presentation?

The “new normal” is that you’re discoverable on-line and savvy consumers of your services (Vistage or TEC membership) can conduct deep due diligence on-line in terms of your capability, recommendations, testimonials, thought-leadership, stories of how you’ve helped others succeed, and why joining your group is a better proposition than joining another group, or something entirely out of the Vistage-TEC experience.

Are you “leaving potential members on the table” by not investing a few minutes in crafting a COMPELLING and ENGAGING LinkedIn Profile?

If you would like to take our 15 minute LinkedIn Profile Check-up (for the Chairs who are NOT currently participating in my Chair Coaching Program), shoot me a note and I’ll send you our one page self-assessment for your Profile – and then we’ll set up a 15 minute phone call to discuss it. By the end of the call, you’ll have 3-4 great best practice ideas to implement and start attracting potential CEOs for your group.

By the way, this “FIX” of your LinkedIn Profile is the first module in our Chair Coaching Program on How to Leverage Social Media To Find New Members.

I look forward to showing you how to find great prospects for your group.

Barry Deutsch

Is Your LinkedIn Headline Compelling OR Mundane?

Surprised CEO when looking at your LinkedIn Profile Headline Is Your LinkedIn Headline Compelling OR Mundane?

Does your headline on your LinkedIn Profile scream:

 

Wow I want to connect with this person

 

OR

 

Does it quickly fade into the woodwork by stating:

 

I’m so boring I copied my job title into the headline

 

You wonder why your connection invites get ignored and rejected. You wonder why more people are not viewing your profile. It’s simple. You’ve failed the test of copy-writing 101: a boring, mundane, uninspiring, unimaginative title or headline.

 

If you read something for which the title or headline is boring and mundane – do you even give it a second glance? Why should your LinkedIn Headline be any different?

Here’s a quote from one of the top LinkedIn Experts, Melonie Dodaro:

 

Your Headline Should Be Catchy & Have Keywords You Want To Be Found For – Create a headline that captures your target market’s attention to encourage them to check out your profile.

 

This is exactly what we’ve been talking about in our Chair Coaching Program with the module on putting a little shine to your LinkedIn Profile. No one cares what your background is, where you came from, and what your job title is. They want to know how can you help me and what value do you bring to others just like me (i.e., CEOs). Failing to create a catchy, inspiring, outrageous, and compelling headline will surely result in mediocre and average results on LinkedIn.

Take an example from our book on recruiting top talent – we focus on finding candidates through describing the role in exciting terms with an outrageous, stunning, and shocking headline. For those that have seen our presentation, we call this a Compelling Marketing Statement. Finding CEOs is no different from recruiting top talent – you’ve got to get their attention – now we’re back to copy-writing 101.

Barry Deutsch

 

P.S. Shoot me a quick email or post a comment to this blog article and I’ll take a quick look at your headline so that you’ll know whether your attracting CEOs or turning them off.

Is Your Network Incapable of Generating CEO Referrals?

 Our Hiring Process for Hiring Managers Is Your Network Incapable of Generating CEO Referrals?

When was the last time you sat down and evaluated where your referrals are coming from?

Do you get your referrals from Vistage/TEC corporate, cold calling, other chairs, or your existing network?

My guess would be that very few of your new members come from your existing network. Why? Because you’re probably not working the network.

For example, in my Chair Coaching Program, we step through the process of segmenting your network, evaluating the strength of each segment, and building each of those segments (Trusted Advisers, Community Influencers, Prospects, Non-profit Board Membership) to generate an abundance of continuous referrals.

Once you’ve segmented your connections into groups, you’ve expanded and built up each group, do you then frequently communicate with those different segments to provide useful value, information, help and be seen as a connector-influencer to your networks?

The process of just collecting “names” on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter is a USELESS exercise unless you are going to engage, nurture, communicate, challenge, help, guide, and encourage members of your network to help you.

ARE YOU ENGAGING YOUR NETWORK ALL THE TIME  - OR IS YOUR STRATEGY TO PURELY COLLECT NAMES?

If you’re not taking advantage of some of the tools that have been evolving in social media over the last few years, such as LinkedIn and Blogging, prepare to be on the losing end of finding and attracting members. CEOs (along with every other business executive in every imaginable discipline) are using the Internet for discovery, due diligence, information gathering, and decision-making. The use of the Internet to find and acquire information (such as which Chair to call and which group to join) is increasing at an geometric rate. Think of your own use of the Internet – now apply that to CEOs considering Vistage or TEC Membership.

If you cannot be found, if cannot separate yourself from all the other competitive offerings available, and if you cannot move potential CEOs along a path of choosing you through original and curated content, you’ll end up getting the leftovers from the Chairs who are embracing these tools and techniques. Many Chairs who would consider themselves “old-school” and ignored social media for the past few years are beginning to see the value of learning and building their skill set in this area. Yes it is uncomfortable and at times humbling to realize there is a vast amount of knowledge and skills that need to be acquired or sharpened.

It takes about 18-24 months to master the techniques of using social media to drive referrals, obtain leads, and nurture those leads. When should you start down this path – when you need 2 more CEOs in your group or 10? Is it when you want to build your monthly income by $5,000 or $20,000? Should it be when you’re tired of not having a full group or falling victim to the domino effect of not one member leaving – but 3 at the same time?

We’ll be able to look back 5 years from now and realize the greatest mistake that Chairs made with social media was the process of starting to learn how to use it “too late”.

So, this is my “little boy crying wolf scenario.” Does it give you an incentive to get started? It doesn’t matter whether you sign up for my complimentary chair coaching program, or you jump onto amazon and buy “I’m on LinkedIn – Now What?” The key is to make that first step toward learning a new skill and technique in the process of finding and acquiring members.

A huge part of the success of any Chair is the ability to quickly, easily, and efficiently find and attract new members. Are you adapting to using the new tools like social media to accomplish this critical component of success? As one of my favorite authors, Steven Covey, termed it: Are you continuously “sharpening the saw?”

Barry Deutsch

Email me for a 15 minute check-up on whether YOUR NETWORK IS CAPABLE OF GENERATING CEO REFERRALS

Do Your Non-Profit Board Members Know Other CEOs?

Candidate Service Networking Strategy Development Do Your Non Profit Board Members Know Other CEOs?

In my Chair Coaching Program on how to leverage social media, one of the lessons we step through is how to see the connections your members have to peer CEOS on the non-profit boards, public commissions, and other community based organizations in your geographic market.

This one module from our coaching program should produce more warm-to-hot referrals for your CEO group than you could possibly follow-up with in a single year. Keep in mind, this is but one of a number of different strategies we cover in the coaching program.

Here’s how the steps of this module in our coaching program works:

1. Ask all your CEO members what boards and commissions they participate in at a leadership level. Make a list. We’ll call this your “Known Board of Director List”

2. Ask all your TAs and other “influencers” what boards and commissions they participate in at a leadership level. Add these organizations to your “Known Board of Directors List”.

3. Connect to all these folks on LinkedIn. You cannot see their rolodex and connections unless you are a first level connection.

4. Conduct a search on LinkedIn for who is a Board member of that same organization as your Member, TA, or influencer. Ask for a personal introduction to each one.

5. Go on-line and get the list of Board Members for the organizations you’ve identified on your “Known Board of Directors List”. All public organizations maintain this list. Search for each person in Google and through LinkedIn to verify they are at a CEO/President level and worthy of pursuing. Ask your Member, TA, or influencer to provide a personal introduction.

6. Even if your members are not on a particular non-profit Board, they will still be connected to numerous CEOs and Presidents sitting on non-profit Boards in your local community. Only about 20% of your members will be active as Board Members. Some of these active individuals will also be on numerous Boards in your local community. Get a list from the local “Book of Lists” or some other reference work in your public library of the top 20-50-100 non-profits. Make this your “Unknown Board of Director List”. Repeat step 5. As you build your network on LinkedIn, you’ll be amazed at how many of your “close” relationships of Members, TAs, and influencers know the CEOs and Presidents on your “Unknown Board of Director" list.

7. Once you build a relationship with the CEOs from Step 6, you can then repeat Steps 1-5 with your new connections. You would be hard pressed to get through this entire “rinse and repeat” cycle over the next 5-6 years.

Spend 15-20 minutes a day on these 7 steps and you’ll most likely NEVER have to struggle again to find potential members for your CEO group (and that’s just one small element of the entire toolkit in leveraging social media to find members)If you’ve not yet asked to be part of this personalized coaching program on finding new members by leveraging social media, shoot me a note to start right now. At the very least, schedule a 30 minute call with me and I’ll show you first hand how to apply the techniques mentioned in this blog article.

Barry Deutsch

Are You Competent in Leveraging Social Media to Find and Attract New Members?

tool chest open hg wht 300x300 Are You Competent in Leveraging Social Media to Find and Attract New Members?

By now you’ve probably had every speaker come to your group on social media. There’s a buzz that everyone should be using it.

As a Chair, are you effectively using it to attract and engage potential new members? Most chairs have not yet put their “toe in the water.” Most chairs are not using social media as part of their toolkit to find, attract, and engage with potential CEOs.

I now have over 100 chairs participating in my personalized FREE Chair Coaching Program for leveraging social media to find and attract new members. We’re seeing a dramatic improvement in leads, engaging with warm and hot referrals, and eliminating the need to EVER make a cold call again! We’re seeing these leads and referrals moving through engagement funnels quickly and easily – from initial conversations to invites to meet with members, in-person conversations, and requests to visit meetings.

In this current reality, many potential CEOs are now using the internet to conduct due diligence of what group and chair they would like to engage with. In larger markets, potential members have complete control of information to choose where they want to belong. They see your blog postings, social media interaction, tweets, articles, and sharing of helpful ideas and links. The Chairs that do a good job in expanding their network, curating/filtering useful content for their network, and sharing/distributing that content to the right members of their network, will being to enjoy an abundance of referrals and a waiting list for their groups.

Now the issue is not whether social media can help you as a chair to attract and engage with new members. The real question is how much time are willing to invest to reach a certain of competency in employing these new tools and techniques that are different from the traditional model of cold calling?

I came across this very interesting article on the traditional model of learning applied against the concept of effectively using social media. Click here to read the full article titled “Social Media and the Four Stages of Competence.”

Where do you fit in the model of these Four Stages? Do you have a plan to get to the next stage? Have you taken the time to talk with other members of the Chair community who are currently enrolled in our Chair Coaching Program? Are you ready to put your big toe in the water?

Barry Deutsch

You're Embarrassing Me - And I mean that in a nice way!

 Embarrassed For Lack of Knowledge1 Youre Embarrassing Me   And I mean that in a nice way!

In a recent coaching conversation with a Chair in my Chair Coaching Program for Leveraging Social Media to Find Members, she indicated that I was embarrassing her due to her lack of knowledge of what to do in social media to attract new members. She found my ease and comfort of knowing exactly what steps, techniques, tools, and methods to use unsettling. She was particularly dismayed at the speed at which I was able to accomplish certain tasks that were taking her 10x more time.

Here’s what I said:

 

You shouldn’t feel embarrassed or humiliated. I’ve been doing this daily for 6-7 years and have perfected my knowledge and use of social media over that time. Unlike this coaching program, I learned it all on my own through trial and error.  I was on LinkedIn when it was just a few million members. I was using Jim Cecil’s ideas on drip nurturing from a TEC presentation 12 years ago - long before the Internet became popular. Today, the buzz words are content marketing, content curation, and content distribution – these concepts integrated with social media are new – but the basic approach has not changed in two decades or more. It’s like learning a new sport, skill, specialized piece of knowledge – there is a definite learning curve. But you should never feel embarrassed or humiliated due to lack of knowledge. In fact, I’ve got to pat you on the back for taking the big step to start learning and discovering how these new tools might help you acquire more members.

 

Two problems with getting started:

First Problem: The problem with coming up to speed in social media - especially for chairs trying to figure out what’s the best tools and techniques that can be applied in the minimum amount of time with the least effort – is that there is a 2-3 year learning curve to gain a moderate level of competency in using the tools to get results (potential CEO referrals that convert to members on a regular basis).  Here’s the rub: a small percentage of CEOs are using social media now. In 2-3 years, adoption will be mature and everyone will be using social media. Do you wait for that point on the maturity curve to get started OR do you get started right now so that when that inflection point hits in 2-3 years, you’ve mastered the core elements of being effective in engaging CEOs with social media? Tough question because if you start now it requires a basic time investment of a few hours a week. If you get started in 2-3 years “when you might have more time”, you risk being left behind since the train already pulled out of the station.

Second Problem: Where do you learn how to get started? There is no ONE place to figure out how to get started. There is no ONE resource on the internet to help you through all the tedious problems, roadblocks, bottlenecks, and frustrations that keep popping up as you set up your social media infrastructure. There is no “user manual.” It’s initially painful and most dread it. I compare it to the Wild West – unstructured, free wheeling, fraught with fear and frustration. This is exactly why I created my Chair Coaching Program for Leveraging Social Media to Find and Attract New Members.

 

Here’s how to solve both problems right now:

In a one-stop model, I’ve created a program for chairs to immediately build their social media infrastructure, knowledge, and expertise in a friendly and trusting environment. A lot of knowledge, problem solving, and tedious set-up combined with just a little “utzing” for accountability, appears to be the right combination to launch most chairs down the path of finding and acquiring new members through social media.

Don't take my word for it - ask some of the 70 plus chairs worldwide who are currently participating in this flexible personalized coaching program.

If you would like to register for our next coaching class (which by the way is FREE for chairs), then send me a quick email or use the CONTACT US form on our Chair Coaching Blog.

Barry

Do Your Prospects Believe What You Tell Them?

bigstock Skeptical business woman iso 17815364 thumb1 Do Your Prospects Believe What You Tell Them?

I hear so many complaints from my executive search clients and from Chairs around the world – that prospects are distrusting of your claims, they are jaded in their perceptions of a traditional “pitch”, are capable of discovering information on the Internet by themselves, and generally struggle to believe what you tell them.

This point was driven home in a blog article the other day by Jill Konrath, on the RainToday.com Blog in an article titled “What to do when your prospects don’t believe you”.

Jill made the following comment in her blog post and then went on to talk about key steps to overcome this lack of trust and believability by prospects. I can’t vouch for her quantification of the metric, but I’ll agree it’s a fairly high number.

 

When you talk about your company, 92% of the time people don't believe you. And the more wonderful things you say about your organization, the more unbelievable you are.

 

My perception is that one way to overcome this traditional low trust and perception of believability is to share stories of success your members have directly been able to achieve through their Vistage/TEC membership. This is one of the central marketing messages we’re using in the Chair Coaching Program on Leveraging Social Media to find CEO Members.

Prospects will pay less attention to your claims – regardless of the number of statistics, metrics, and numbers you throw at them. They will sit up straight in their chairs, focus on you, and listen deeply, when you relate the stories of your members that are most comparable to the issues they are facing.

How do I define a story: Your member took an idea from a speaker, issue processing, your one-to-one, and implemented it. They got some specific quantifiable value from that implementation. It was something they would not have done on their own – it came from their membership in Vistage/TEC. If you’ve been a chair for a few years – you’ve got hundreds of these stories. Start writing them down in a journal. Keep them with you all the time.

I did a little informal research on this subject with the 75 plus chairs currently enrolled in my Chair Coaching Program. I asked each one to share with me on the spot the top 3-5 stories of something their member took away from Vistage/TEC, implemented in their personal life or business, and the quantifiable impact it had. Less than 3 chairs had this information at their fingertips.

This is THE marketing message to prospects in social media. The whole foundation of social media is sharing stories with your network and bringing them to the recognition they would also like to own those same stories for themselves. It’s not about selling features and benefits – that technique went out the door 10 years ago – so stop using it.

Put your prospects in the shoes of your members. Help them to visualize the same impact your members are getting in a precise, specific, and quantifiable story.

If you’ve not yet taken advantage of my personal coaching program for chairs on how to leverage social media to find and attract new CEO members, shoot me a note, give me a call, or fill out the contact us form by clicking here to talk about how the program works – and the success stories of the current group of chairs cycling through this coaching program.

Barry Deutsch

If you would like to read the full article on RainToday.com, please click the link below:

What to do when your prospects don’t believe you

Myths About CEOs NOT Using Social Media

Content Marketing Institute thumb1 Myths About CEOs NOT Using Social Media

Joe Pulizzi wrote a blog post about the myths of CEOs not using social media. A lot of CEOs in small businesses and entrepreneurial companies use these myths as rationalizations and justification for why they shouldn’t get involved in social because their peers are not involved.

If you believe that to be to true, then prepare to be trailing everyone else in your marketplace. The very best companies are beginning to move up the learning curve of leveraging social media – and it starts at the top of the pyramid. If the CEO is not engaged, why should anyone else care?

Joe made the following comment in his blog article:

 

Myth #1: My clients don’t consume online content

We hear this all the time. Some senior marketers say that they target CEOs, who don’t use search engines or social media. Recent Google research tells us that the average consumer engages in over 10 sources of information before making a buying decision. Also, according to research from Doremus and the Financial Times, over 60 percent of senior executives read blogs, watch online video, view webcasts, and use professional networking sites like LinkedIn.

 

We’re seeing examples multiply daily of CEOs using LinkedIn, Google Plus, Twitter, and Facebook – not only to engage with their peers, but also with customers, vendors, suppliers, and channel partners.

Numerous case studies indicate that social media is NOT a passing Fad. It’s here to stay. These case studies, research projects, polls, whitepapers, and practical examples extend across every imaginable industry segment and include applications for customer service, retention, hiring and recruiting, lead generation and nurturing, marketing, PR, branding, and employee engagement to name a few.

I tell my high school girl’s basketball team that we never want to be in a position of chasing the other team, following their lead, or scrambling after someone else. We want to be the group that makes everyone chase after us.

Where would you like to be positioned on the court of competition? Leading by example or chasing the best companies?

After having just responded to a member request on the Vistage Village for examples of where companies are implementing social media, I realized that there is an enormous gap between what big-mid companies are doing and what small businesses and entrepreneurial companies are not doing. Stay tuned for this blog article in the next week or two.

If you would like to read the full article, please click the link below:

Selling the C-Level: 7 Marketing Myths Debunked

Barry Deutsch

Who Is In Your Network of Personal Service Providers?

Blogging Tips Blog thumb Who Is In Your Network of Personal Service Providers?

Are you building out a part of your referral network to include subject matter experts or real trusted advisers/trusted authorities?

The distinction is critical. One you’ll rarely ever see referrals from, and one you’ll see an abundance of referrals.

I was reminded of this distinction in reading a blog post from Patti Stafford on the Blogging Tips blog.

 

First, you have to have competence in what you do. Experts don’t always have the competence or the confidence in the beginning to claim the title of “authority” but they work towards it.

The second thing you need to be the authority figure is to be committed to helping others, have a passion for helping those people. Often times, the expert wants to help others, but it’s not their driving force. Their driving force is to be the expert. The trusted authority moves past that and their goals focus on helping others.

The trusted advisers/trusted influencers/trusted authority figures have a level of respect with their clients and network that moves far beyond the influence of an expert. Remember the old EF Hutton commercials when the broker from EF Hutton spoke, a hushed silence occurred and everyone leaned in to hear what was being said. If your an expert, you’re contacts, connections, and relationships will view you simply as a subject matter expert – that’s the narrow light they see you in. When you’re a trusted adviser or authority, your network seeks your advice and takes action based on your advice.

Allow me to share an example. I have an extensive network of subject matter experts. I hope that these folks hear about executive search opportunities with their clients when they are working on projects in their area of expertise – benefit plan changes, legal issues, strategic planning, marketing programs, etc. Unfortunately, it’s usually wishful thinking. These subject matter experts are not “privy” to anything going on at their clients beyond the narrow scope of their expert-related project.

Now let’s look at the trusted adviser or trusted authority. This person is involved in counseling their CEOs on a wide range of subjects, including who to choose as a consultant for work that has nothing to do with their subject matter expertise. They are invited into their client’s confidence, brought to the table for advice, and trusted for their recommendations. My clients know that when i make a recommendation, it’s from my heart as a well-meaning attempt to give them value and help them succeed. My clients have to be guarded – fearing some hidden agenda or ulterior motive.

A few days ago, I was on a phone call discussing a project with a potential client, who had been referred to me by one of her trusted advisers. At the end of our conversation, the client said, “If Julie trusts and believes in you –that’s good enough for me. Send me over your contract and I’ll sign it.” How many of the subject matter experts in your network have that level of influence and authority with their clients?

How does this work for a Chair seeking CEO members. When a trusted adviser makes a referral, you can be assured it’s set-up, ready for you to take to the signing level. If that trusted adviser said you’re a good person and TEC/Vistage is the route to go, you don’t have to worry about closing. Are you working too hard on trying to close referrals from subject matter experts that just don’t have enough “juice” or influence to steer their CEO clients toward TEC/Vistage membership.

Who’s in your network – experts or trusted advisers?

One of the key elements we’re focusing on in the Chair Coaching Program for Leveraging Social Media is how to find and engage with true trusted advisers – real authority figures – who are willing to go above and beyond the call of duty in providing referrals of their CEOs to you. Have you signed up for this FREE program yet? I’ll bet you get few to none referrals from your network of subject matter experts.

Ask me to show you how in just a short 15 minute conversation how to determine if a network contact is worth nurturing based on being a trusted adviser vs. a subject matter expert.

If you would like to read the complete article by Patti Stafford, click the link below:

Expert or Trusted Authority: Which is Better?

Barry Deutsch

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