I know sometimes my alliterative tendencies go to far, but I couldn’t resist this title. I couldn’t resist because I actually dated a guy a couple of years ago who repeatedly referred to himself as a meathead. Really? This was mismarketing to me. Mismarketing is exactly what it sounds like, you are missing the mark of your marketing and may not even be aware of it.
You see, the lesson here is you have to be very aware of what moniker you apply to yourself in front of clients and customers. This is a lot like dating and what continually occurred to me (and still does) is why did I want to date a “meathead.” I didn’t and broke it off. Were there other reasons, of course, but it was all too easy to lump them under the headline of “meathead.” He made it easy for me to accept his marketing and not accept him.
#1 Honor Yourself and Your Clients Will Honor You
When you call yourself by some self deprecating title, it isn’t going to serve your business well. By the same token, don’t go all egotistical either and name yourself the King or Queen of something unless you truly are! (This is kind of like being #1 at anything, there are always 500 more of you claiming the same status.)
It isn’t just about what you call yourself, but how you show up. That is your behavior that makes a real difference. I’ve interviewed service providers (is that a title you wear?) who focused on running down their competition and telling me how the other guy did it all wrong. Even if he did, this didn’t build the provider being interviewed up.
# Honor Your Competitors and Focus on What You Do Best
This is particularly relevant when we go through elections every four years and witness the smear campaigns the candidates degrade themselves into. It doesn’t make them look better, just petty and without enough qualifications to focus on to win without mud slinging. Stop focusing on your competition and instead keep the focus tightly on YOU and what you do best. Leave the decision up to your market, mudslinging muddies you as well.
I have to tell you I got a wry grin when I read an email from a contractor’s business manager recently. The contractor was expected on a site to quote and his manager emailed me the morning of with “he’ll be on time and he’ll behave.” Hilarious!
He always ran on time that was never an issue, but he was often so full of himself that it was hard to get him to focus on the task at hand. The reason I put up with it, is he is incredibly fast and top notch quality at his work. It is still trying and all too tempting to find another with less attitude.
#3 Honor Your Clients and Keep Your Ego Out of the Way
There is nothing more “meathead” like than going all Big-Man-On-Campus with your clients. They hired you because they considered you qualified for the job or project at hand. You already have their initial vote of confidence. Avoid negative marketing at all costs.
Put your head down, focus on the doing the work to the best of your ability and let them make the rave reviews. When you run around touting your talent, beating your chest like George of the Jungle, you are inevitably going to run into that tree of humility!