Brian Moran is a small business expert and we think he’s an absolute gem.
To mention just a smidgen of his accolades – he’s worked with entrepreneurs for years, been a 3x entrepreneur himself, an exec director of sales at the Wall Street Journal and sits on several national marketing councils. Oh and he uses Lately too, whoop whoop.
Basically, he’s a busy, busy man! So, we’re even more psyched that he sat down for a chat with Kate.
You can also watch this and other Lately Live videos here.
Trends for SMEs in 2019
Brian stresses that small businesses have to start embracing digital tech even more, with urgency! His top tip is if you’re not comfortable with digital and social worlds, then get help from someone who does. Social media is a wild west yeehaw, but you need to get in the game. Your customers and competitors are there, so jump in.
And there are tons of excuses why people don’t want to do digital. Brian thinks the biggest excuse is time management. Time is money and there are time robbers everywhere. Are you spending money wisely and learning about new trends in the market? Are you looking at new tools?
The key lesson is that the more efficiently you manage your time, the better you’ll be able to position your brand. When people say “I don’t have the time to learn social media” – they’re basically saying their business is a hobby. Everyone should have a strategic goal for the end of 2019 – whether it’s revenue, new users etc. Everything you do should be action gearing you up towards your goal.
Knowing your Brand
How customers describe your brand is what your brand is. Brian asks audiences about logos and brands at events – how do they feel about them? Everyone has an opinion, but that IS how customers see a brand. You might want to describe your brand one way, but ask your audience to use 4 words to describe it. How many of your words match up with their words?
What words didn’t you even think of? You might get negative words, but you really need to address these shortcomings. Why do they think this? This info is dynamite. Use golden nuggets of info to project the brand people you want people to see. And do it consistently.
Brian asks customers for feedback and tells them about the value they can bring. This creates that direct connection. Reinforce the brand, reach out and ask for input. When you get feedback, don’t end the conversation either, tell customers what you’re doing with their feedback – make it the start of your conversation. The social proof that a customer’s feedback has helped is really impactful.
The Power of Thanks
“Saying thanks is a lost art” according to Brian. We live in such a competitive world, it can take months to get business, but a second to lose it. Loyalty is being tested everywhere. Take instant delivery for example – how can a small business compete when it can’t do this? By being authentic, genuine and sincere.
Build relationships with clients and customers. Don’t treat customers like a number and it doesn’t cost a lot to say thanks.
“Saying thankyou is an opportunity to reinforce a decision that a customer has made and why they were right to choose you over everybody else” – we’re gonna get that on a t-shirt!
Public thanking lets you stroke someone’s ego and they’ll share it so you can get a double whammy. Brian says ‘I just sent you a DM’ when he has a problem with a company, so he can carefully and quietly resolve an issue. He’ll be more public when it’s praise. And he’ll highlight people to companies when they deserve praise, cos acknowledgement can change someone’s day and gestures can make a big difference!
When you’re authentic and genuine with everything you do, you’ll get tenfold back and we totally agree with Brian on this one.
So in true Brian style – thanks for chatting with us!