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Personal Branding is Vital to Networking Success

Yesterday I read a book on personal branding and using platforms to help get the word out about a product, whether YOU are the product or you are trying to sell a good or service. The book written by,Gary Vaynerchuck, is Why Now Is The Time To Crush It: Cashing In On Your Passion.  Networking is the platform that he recommends for building your personal brand!  NETWORKING NOTE: *All successful networkers know that having a solid network that refers business consistently is far more valuable than any advertising.*

Social networking is his platform of choice, however it is quite relevant to this blog. One of the things he said stuck out to me was his piece about the price of traditional advertising; Billboards, direct mail, and radio ads. Take a look at this excerpt from his book:

” In December 2008, I spent $7,500 to offer free shipping codes for Winelibrary.com via three marketing/advertising channels-a perfectly placed billboard on the New Jersey Turnpike, direct mail, and radio. The billboard brought in a hundred and seventy orders. The radio campaign did about two hundred and forty orders. Through direct mail we got a little  over three hundred. I twittered out-for free-a free shipping code and got seventeen hundred orders in forty-eight hours. What this should prove to you is that platforms are everything, and the old ones are softening. If they don’t adjust soon, they will be gone or at best irrelevant. As it is, these traditional platforms should be only used by the biggest companies who can afford the scale.” (bold and italics mine)

Two things in this quote are relevant to the topic of networking. The first, his success from Twitter in the order came through successful networking and brand building. In order for him to receive 1,700 orders in two days,without an established network. If you read this book you will find that Gary Vaynerchuck is a terrific networker because he works hard at it! That is essential to becoming a master networker, an extreme work ethic at building relationships. If you don’t want to put in that effort, stop following this blog and stop hoping that you are going to build a strong network that will benefit you for the rest of your life.

The second thing to take away is the amount of money he spent on traditional advertising and the small return. Social networking and live networking cost little to nothing to execute effectively. As I noted with bold and italics in the quote, only the biggest companies can afford the traditional forms of advertising. Small business makes up over 50% of America’s GDP. Translation: Over 50% of America’s businesses cannot afford to consistently pay for traditional forms of advertising. Remarkable.

So what does this mean to YOU? IF you have what it takes to become a master networker you will have tremendous value to over 50% of America and wield tremendous power in the business world. It is not so much what you know, it is who you know!

Happy networking!

-Kyle

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