Monday, September 23, 2013

Power Marketing Tip #59: How to be recognized as a thought leader


Do you want to be recognized as a thought leader in your field?


When you are perceived to be a thought leader you will

  • Be quoted often by the media
  • Be able to charge more money
  • Attract a better clientele
  • Be presented with better opportunities
  • Attract followers
There are three things that you need to do to be seen as a thought leader.

Write and publish on your topic. Social media isn't enough to establish your position although it could be used to build your following.

The simplest way to publish your writing is on a blog. Regular - at least weekly posts of 100 to 800 words will force you to explore and research your topic. Q & A's and tips lists are popular formats.

It also helps to publish your works in traditional print media - magazines and newspapers. A book is the highest form of print publication. Even an ebook will boost your credibility.

Speaking can take the form of delivering a speech at a chamber, association or community event. An easy way to get started is by speaking to schools, service groups or Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park, London, England. Apparently Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and George Orwell made speeches there.

Deliver training programs for clients, prospects or colleagues. The more you stand and speak in front of others the more opportunity to convey your expertise and teach others. Teaching forces you to better understand your topic. You also gain the experience of their questions and perspective.

If you do only the first two you might be noticed and even recognized as an adept. But you won't be seen as a thought leader until you disrupt the status quo. Leaders don't follow the herd.

That means taking a position that is contrary to the masses. If everyone knows that the world is flat then you need to explain why it's round. If everyone knows that the world is round, then you might take the position that it's flat or oblong.

A thought leader must disrupt common beliefs or practices. True disruption means asking the questions that others are avoiding and posing ideas that most haven't considered.

If you want to be seen as a thought leader then be willing to write, speak and disrupt.

George Torok Keynote Marketing Speaker Co-author of Secrets of Power Marketing Get your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" Power Marketing on FaceBook Marketing Zoo on Twitter Share/Save/Bookmark

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

If you own the Trademark do you own the Brand?

If you own the Trademark do you own the Brand?

The short answer is no.

Trademark and brand are NOT the same. The one doesn’t have a direct correlation with the other.

A Trademark is a legal term that applies to a logo, image or phrase. To own a Trademark you must apply to the national Intellectual Property authority. The regulations, process and fees varies from country to country. Owning a trademark in one country doesn’t convey ownership in any other country nor ensure that you can obtain that ownership.

Trademark is different from copyright which is a different form of Intellectual Property with different rules.

When someone infringes on your Trademark you need to call your lawyers.

A Trademark is simply an identifier.

Brand is an entirely different story.

There isn’t a clear definition of Brand. There are many theories and opinions. Also there is a Tsunami of Brand experts because there’s no legal standard or definition. Because of this, most of us – including me – are expressing our opinion of how we see brands.

In my opinion, a corporate brand is about the customer experience – or – the promise.

That brand can change. It can be tarnished. It can go viral. It is intangible. It can be hijacked by circumstances or clever competition.

You never really OWN your brand. It is the perception that the market has. Your brand is what your clients and prospects think about you. You don’t own that. You can influence it.

For example:

The BP brand was blindsided by the Gulf oil disaster.
Richard Branson’s Virgin brand has nothing to do with his Trademark.

You can have a powerful brand without a Trademark.

When someone or something threatens your brand you need to revise the way you conduct business.


George Torok Keynote Marketing Speaker Co-author of Secrets of Power Marketing Get your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" Power Marketing on FaceBook Marketing Zoo on Twitter Share/Save/Bookmark

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Big Time Author Sends Offensive Smelling Email

Big Time Author Sends Offensive Smelling Email

It’s not what you think – or maybe it is.

Learn from the experts. Don’t repeat their mistakes. Would it surprise you to learn that so-called experts make mistakes? This doesn’t mean that their work isn’t credible, just that sometimes they might get sloppy or over-reach – especially when their fans and sycophants keep telling them that they walk on water.

In this case, I received an email from a well-known author of several bestselling books. He’s an acclaimed guru on leadership and communication; therefore you would think that he wouldn’t make a major communication error.

Read the following email and notice the phrases that might feel offensive to the recipient. By offensive I mean insincere and deceptive. Keep in mind that I’ve never met or corresponded with this person before.


Hi George,

How are you today? I just came across your profile and thought I would reach out real quick and see if you would like to connect further here on LinkedIn.

I don’t usually reach out like this, but thought you may be a good candidate for my advanced leadership certification program and wanted to personally invite you to take a look at it.

If you are interested in learning more, let me know and I will introduce you to the right person on my team who can provide you with more information.

Here is a link with more info in the meantime:

Keep up the good work.
Your friend,



Keep in mind that we hold the gurus to higher standards.

What might smell funny in this email?

“How are you today?”

If he was the guru that he is acclaimed to be he would know that phrase is the dumbest way to start a cold call.  When you receive a phone call from a person who you don’t know and they open with “How are you today?” you know it’s a sales call. You also know that it’s a sales person who’s already wasted the first seconds of the call by asking an insincere question. They don’t care how you are and you still don’t know why they called.

The other dumb aspect to open with in that email is that the recipient cannot answer. Should you send back an email and answer that question?  Why ask a question if you don’t want an honest answer? This means it was a rhetorical question – one where the person asking doesn’t expect you to answer or care about your answer.

So how would you feel if a stranger asks you, “How are you?” then before you can answer they say, “Never mind, I don’t care.”

“I don’t usually reach out like this”

Now you might wonder, “Really? So why now?”

You might wonder “How many people did you reach out to with this message?”

Technically that phrase might be true. Perhaps he hasn’t done a mass promotion on this particular networking site yet. That phrase feels deceptive. The intent might be to sound selective – to make you sound special.

“Your friend”

His message is signed with “your friend”. His definition of friend is clearly different from mine. We’ve never met, conversed or corresponded yet this prospecting email makes us friends.

This person is seasoned enough to know that Facebook friends aren’t real friends. I don’t even know if we are connected on Facebook. Just because he wants to sell me something doesn’t make him a friend. It’s one thing to act friendly. It’s a different thing to claim that he is my friend. That feels deceptive and slimy.

It seems curious that he’s selling a Leadership Certification program while being deceptive.

I’ve omitted his name because my purpose is to help you learn from his mistakes not to embarrass him at this time.

Test your emails for the Smell of Deception.


George Torok Keynote Marketing Speaker Co-author of Secrets of Power Marketing Get your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" Power Marketing on FaceBook Marketing Zoo on Twitter Share/Save/Bookmark

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Tell me why I should meet with you


Why should I meet with you?

The best way to connect is face to face. But you need to justify the face to face meeting.

Connecting on Social media shouldn’t be the goal. It could be the early steps in a progressive process of building relationships. The next step might be a phone call or a face to face meeting.

But getting to step one doesn’t ensure that you get to step three. Each step has a go or no-go decision. You need to build trust and interest.

Imagine this scenario. You connect with a new person through online or live networking. That’s the first step in networking. The next step might be a phone call which might lead to a coffee meeting.

Some people are social butterflies who are willing to meet with anyone. That is not I. I want to know why I should invest my time with you before we meet. That doesn’t make me anti-social. I simply prefer to know the purpose (and possible return) before I invest my resources. Time is the most valuable resource.

Here is an example of a conversation I had with a person who I connected with online. This led to a phone call that went like this:

Me: Hello. Glad to connect. Tell me about your business.

Other: Let’s meet for coffee. When is a good time to meet?

Me: First I want to know why we should meet. At this point, how do you think we might help each other?

Other: I need to meet with you to explain that.

Me: Can you tell me what you do or sell?

Other: I prefer to show you that in person.

Me: I’m confused and getting frustrated. What’s your 30 second message?

Other: I don’t have one. You need to see the products. It’s visual.

Other: We’re on the phone now. Tell me why I should meet with you?

Other: You can’t get a haircut over the phone. Is it a matter of timing?

Me: No it’s a matter of time and priorities. You can’t or won’t tell me why we should meet. I don’t want to get clipped so goodbye.

As you can imagine that was the end of the phone call and we didn’t meet. There was no reason to meet.

Prospects don’t meet with you because you ask them to meet. They meet when they see a compelling reason to meet.

George Torok Keynote Marketing Speaker Co-author of Secrets of Power Marketing Get your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" Power Marketing on FaceBook Marketing Zoo on Twitter Share/Save/Bookmark

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Power Marketing Tip #58: Buy a coffee and ask for...

The easiest business is a referral

Imagine receiving a call like this, "Hello, our mutual friend Jack suggested that I call you about my problem."

That's a hot lead. The caller has already been sold on your credibility. You don't need to sell yourself. All you need to do is confirm Jack's praise of your ability.

A variation of this is when Jack tells you to call Jennifer and mention his name as a reference. When you reach Jennifer, she responds with, "Yes, Jack told me about you. I've been expecting your call."
Terry handed her resume to her friend Leslie who offered to deliver it personally to her cousin at the company that was hiring.

These are just three examples of how referrals or personal introductions can help your business or career.

This is the real purpose of networking - to introduce you to someone who might hire you or buy your product. Networking isn't about finding people to sell to - it's about building trust with people who might introduce you to buyers.

Recently I've reconnected with some associates and old friends by phone and over coffee. By reaching out I received some names, introductions and referrals. I gained some new business and opened some promising leads. There's a good reason why that coffee is a valid business expense. It can you generate new business.

How can you get more warm introductions?

Stop throwing your business card at every networking victim you meet. Instead, be sure to collect their card and have a meaningful and memorable conversation. The next step is to call them for a more in-depth conversation. That might lead to a coffee meeting which can build trust and rapport.

Revive old relationships with friends, clients or colleagues. You can use any excuse for this:

  • Hey I miss you
  • Hope you are enjoying the summer
  • Saw a movie that reminded me of you
  • Read about your company in the news
  • Saw you on FaceBook, Linkedin, YouTube
  • Our old connection was in the news
At some point in the conversation you might ask, "What's your current or next challenge?" You also should ask "How can I help you?"

Then listen and make good notes. Provide names or offer to introduce them to people who can help them.

If they don't ask, be sure to tell them how they might help you. Make sure they're listening before you start to rattle on.

Then end the conversation with, "What are the next steps for us?"

George Torok Keynote Marketing Speaker Co-author of Secrets of Power Marketing Get your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" Power Marketing on FaceBook Marketing Zoo on Twitter Share/Save/Bookmark