How Not to Wobble as a Steady Presence

Christina Frei Innate Marketing Genius, Marketing Genius, Steady Presence

This is part of a series of case studies that highlight each Innate Marketing Genius in action. To discover all five Geniuses, go here for a Diagnostic Guide.

Sarah is one of those multi-talented people who likes networking and could do all kinds of marketing to build her business.  She’s a back-end business manager for small businesses and she could easily geek out on gobs of business-software to get her marketing done. After all, that’s what she does for her clients.  But this alone would not show her strengths and wouldn’t get her the clients she wants.  Not even close.

Sarah is raising her glass of iced tea around a table of five other entrepreneurs having salads at a local corner restaurant in Roslindale, MA.  As a Steady Presence, Sarah is at her best here, holding a regular event where she’s going deep with her prospects and business colleagues.  These folks expand their network, learn some things, and get out of the home office.  When you’re a Steady Presence, it’s all about showing your commitment to your community, sharing your expertise, and showing the depth of your network and resources. You’re the one people lean on as that lighthouse in a storm, after all. We need to know we can trust you.

When Sarah and I started working together, Sarah felt a bit stagnant in her marketing efforts. She was doing a few different things and wanted to focus her efforts, but wasn’t sure where. When I identified her as a Steady Presence, I knew it would be important for her to show some community leadership and to build trust by showing her expertise.  No surprise that she loved all these strategies, since they really felt like her.

Her marketing strategy is three-fold.

Local Workshops: Sarah now offers local workshops on different business management challenges, such as task management and scheduling software.  This is a strong Steady Presence approach. But Sarah needs to be a Steady Presence all the way through.  While presenting, Sarah needs to talk about her software certifications or that she’s part of a software community or geek out in some other way. I wouldn’t recommend this to just any backend business manager, but as a Steady Presence, her audience wants to relax knowing Sarah can go deep in her areas of expertise.

For example, if she is giving Evernote pointers, they want to hear her mention the Evernote community or convention that she participates in or the certification she’s received as an Evernote expert.  The relief in the room will be apparent. That relief will get her hired.

Volunteer Work: Sarah leads a Goodwill Clothing Swap effort within a local business networking group. She loves helping in this way, regardless of the business impact, but she discovered that people trust her more as a business owner, especially since she’s at the helm.  Leadership like this shows you are not going anywhere, that you’re committed deeply to your community.  Not only does it build trust in her networking group, but with prospects and colleagues too.  Again, it’s not why she helps this cause, but if she is putting in the time, she doesn’t need to be shy about her philanthropy.  It is playing to her strengths as a Steady Presence.

Power Lunches:  Holding these once a month, Sarah shows consistency and reliability. While enjoying a crunchy roll, Sarah can share all the other things she’s doing (workshops, volunteer work) with this small gathering.  People get to know each other and enjoy themselves If someone has a business management challenge, Sarah can mention how she can help and schedule an offline meeting. Or if prompted, Sarah could nerd out and answer their question. When she’s out and about, Sarah can invite people to these lunches, which is generous and shows she is up to something. These lunches fill up immediately every time.

What Sarah Should Not Worry About:  showing how her project management work makes it safe for folks to reach their full potential (this is tempting, since she helps solopreneurs delegate the stuff she doesn’t want to do) (Nurturer), focus on living life to the fullest and all the possible adventures (Adventure Guide), overly focus on how innovative and helpful her tools are (Door Opener), or try to bring the funny or the flair (Celebrator).

What Works Well Instead: establishing her depth of expertise, her network, her resources, and her commitment to her community. That’s a Steady Presence we all want to hire.

Do you love being the calm in the storm, the person with the deep network and resources that benefit your business community? You might be a Steady Presence. Let’s explore that and see how it could get you more clients.