Why you need to talk the talk as well as walk the walk

Remember those noisy kids at school – and how they got all their attention? They’d be up to all kinds of mischief trying to bait the teachers. And they certainly got noticed – by the other kids, the teachers, even the parents. Yet the attention they got was rarely for their schoolwork; it was far more likely to be about a prank they’d pulled!

Things are much the same in the business world

In the business world, the noisy people tend to get the attention. How good they are at their jobs (or not) we don’t know, but they’re certainly very good at talking themselves up, in a most convincing way.

If you’re a quieter personality type, this can be annoying!

After all, there you are working away hard – usually long hours. And making sure that you cross all the proverbial “t”s and dot all the “i”s. You know you do a good job – possibly better than anyone else out there – yet the noisy competitor is getting all the juicy contracts. How unfair!

Fairness has nothing to do with it. (Your teacher may even have told you; “there’s no such thing as fair”… they were right, there isn’t.)

Doing a good job isn’t enough. You have to give yourself good publicity on the job you do. Because if you’re not going to blow your own trumpet, no one else is going to do it for you!

The good news is that you don’t have to do this in a noisy, irritating way. It can even be low key self-promotion – which is fine, providing that you are promoting yourself.

Here are five simple but effective ways in which you can boost your profile:

1. Customer testimonials

Feel a bit cheesy saying how great you are? Then get your customers to say it for you! Your best customers will probably be more than happy to give you a written testimonial, and that’s something you can use on your website, in your marketing materials, and even read out in networking meetings. Best of all, a customer testimonial is seen to be far more credible than you saying those things yourself.

2. Share your successes online

Launched a new website for a client? Revamped their brand? Installed a new IT system? Provided the project isn’t confidential, post details on your website, blog, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter profile. Your blurb doesn’t have to be long to get noticed!

3. Up-skill your sales techniques

Making a good first impression at sales meetings is vital; if you’re not a natural sales person, it’s well worth getting some sales training. It can be a huge confidence booster.

4. Create a sales kit

If you’re meeting a new prospect, showing them evidence of your work is a lot more compelling and convincing than just talking about it. So create a sales kit, which can include your portfolio, testimonials, profile document, and so on.

5. Talk yourself up at networking meetings

Use your 60 second pitch to share a story of how you helped a customer – and if you have something visual to go with it, it’s even more compelling.

By taking these steps, you’re not just raising your profile, but you’re also making it a lot easier for your contacts and strategic alliance partners to refer you to others.

You need to talk the talk as well as walk the walk

If you’re just walking the walk, very few people get to know about it. So talking it up helps spread the message.

And as we’ve discovered, there are indeed low-key, non-cheesy ways to promote yourself. You don’t have to be as brash as the loud kid at school. Gently does it – but just make sure you do give yourself some great publicity.