the real you  Coming across various groups and businesses on Facebook is almost like watching reality television. You feel like you’ve moved into a totally different dimension from the one in which you have always lived. You find business owners, not familiar or comfortable with marketing on social media, crossing the line between their business and their personal lives, often forgetting that they are using a public forum.

Business owners don’t necessarily make the best figureheads for their businesses and it isn’t their job to be one. While quite often a powerful person with an important title, a figurehead tends to be someone with limited power or influence, and as a business owner, that means that though your customers will look to you for direction when it comes to their purchases, they also expect you to be the one in control. As a business owner, you make the decisions and you need to represent your business better than anyone or else find someone who can do it for you.

Owning a business puts you in the position of having to be aware of what you say, how you look and what you do – all the time. It is somewhat similar to being a politician but without the election or votes, but either way, don’t forget that your customers are either quietly voting for you or they’re voting for someone else.

Are you adept at building relationships? Some of us make friends easily and have an instant impact on others while the rest of us can feel awkward or out of place when public speaking or attending events. If you’re one of those who doesn’t mix well, it may be better to have a hired gun, or expert, that takes care of dealing with the public and represents your business for you. Most small business owners don’t like that idea but if their talents don’t include marketing, then they are better off finding someone who does have that talent.

Are you naturally professional or more the relaxed type? Depending on the type of business you own, your customers will expect a certain style from you, both in your manner and your way of dress. They also expect you to speak correctly and to know your business inside out. Those are a lot of expectations but that is what you signed on for when you started your business.

As the best representative for your business, you should treat everyone you meet as a customer or potential customer. Take advantage of these opportunities to make yourself more comfortable with interacting with the public. Let your personality shine through and remember that your public self is the one that your customers will rely on as being your real self.

© Chris Draper, DemGen Inc. 2015

image courtesy of got2beyou