About this video
Why salespeople need to be aware today of the brand that they create
Video length: 3:33
Dave Harries: Grant I’d like to talk to you about branding now because something that some people might consider a little controversial that you put in your book is that branding is now in the domain of selling as well as marketing. Explain that.
Grant Leboff: Yes. What I meant by that is this. One of the things that the web, digital has done is it’s made everybody a personality. I don’t mean famous. Nobody’s famous. What I mean by everybody is a personality today is that it’s possible today for everybody to be checked out. If I’m meeting you for the first time, you can go on line and you can find out a lot about me and make quite a lot of value judgments about who I am, what I’m about, whether I’m worth meeting, et cetera, et cetera before we ever get face to face.
Now that’s unusual because twenty years ago you had value judgments about famous people that you saw on the screen or on the stage or whatever or heard them on the radio but for most of us who were anonymous the only way of knowing really about you is either hearsay but otherwise to meet you face to face. That’s not the case anymore. Sales people have got to be very, very aware today of the brand that they create, of the personality they create on line, in terms of the knowledge they present, in terms of the networks they’re a part of, the connections they have, the comments they put out there because all of that affects… Everybody in a way has a personal brand which is very very important.
Dave Harries: I suppose what you’re saying is that that personal brand has to be a continuation of the organizations brand I would image. The one the traditional marketing department would have tried to create and reinforce and so on. It’s important that the sales people are right there and they’re congruent with that brand.
Grant Leboff: Exactly right. There has to be a consistency, you’re one hundred percent right, between … It doesn’t have to be the same but of course it has to be consistent. If I’m representing an organization and I seem to be diametrically opposed in my views or completely different from that organization then it’s not authentic, it’s not real, it’s not genuine and there will be a lack of trust there. Any incongruence in a message normally leads to a lack of trust. Not because you’re a bad person but it just doesn’t sit right, it doesn’t resonant. The other part where branding becomes important for a sales person is that branding is powerful because what branding gives people is mind share.
In other words if I asked you to think of three soft drinks right now, it wouldn’t surprise me if one of them was Coca Cola. One of those drinks being Coca Cola, they’ve paid for that mind share over many years. What it means is you go to the supermarket. You’re having a barbecue let’s say with some friends, I’m going to put some soft drinks in the trolley. I better put some Coke in there because people kind of expect that. That’s how branding leads to sales because that mind share means that that is always in the buying set. It’s important for sales people to do the same today within their narrow market places in which they work.
In other words if you are sharing titbits, sharing ideas, sharing knowledge, networking with people, building an awareness because you have this brand that you’re creating, when I’m ready to buy you’re one of the people that come into my buying set. I must speak to Dave about video. Therefore you are in the buying set and you get some of those leads. Branding from an awareness point of view as well as a reputational point of view matters to sales people today.
There may be small changes to the spoken word in this transcript in order make it more readable.