Today I have the great pleasure of interviewing author, coach and radio host Deb Scott. Deb and I met five years ago (when I was still fleshing out the ideas for The 7 Graces of Marketing)while we both participated in the ‘Next Top Spiritual Author’ contest. Although technically Deb and I were ‘competing’ against one another in the contest, a remarkable thing happened. We – along with many others in the contest – actually started creating a collaborative network. We invented ways – such as podcasts, webinars and social media campaigns – to help support each other’s work.
To this day, many of us are still great friends, and we continue to collaborate as network partners on many marketing campaigns. Amongst those lovely people, Deb stands out as someone I can always call upon (and, I hope, vice versa). She’s been a partner on many of my clients’ book launches. I had the great pleasure of interviewing Deb on my (now defunct) radio show and for online telesummits. Deb has also interviewed me many times on her top-ranking BlogTalkRadio show The Best People We Know.
Now, Deb has written a new Kindle e-book called Social Media for the Rest of Us, which came out earlier this month. I was away on holiday during her launch, but I’ve been told it’s doing exceptionally well, reaching #1 of all books in the category ‘Social Media for Business’ and #2 in ‘Social Media 2.0’ and ‘Social Media How To’.
To help spread the word about Deb’s book, I’ve asked her to do a little virtual interview with me today on specific topics around the ethics and practice of online marketing that I believe would be of interest to our 7 Graces audience. I hope you’ll enjoy Deb’s insights.
LYNN: Deb, our 7 Graces audience are all socially minded business owners who are devoted to ethical practice. What are some of the ethical issues you’ve noticed with how some less-scrupulous marketers use social media?
DEB: Real success in using social media for business is all down to partnering with the right people. But in finding partners, one of the greatest challenges is dealing with people who say one thing and do another. There are many not-so-ethical people out there who claim to be genuinely supportive but in fact are simply opportunist and have no interest in using social media to help others or connect with them. They are only interested in the ‘All-About-ME’ show, rather than the ‘All-About-WE’ show.
In my eyes, those who achieve real, long-term success in social media are those who are not only ethical but also generous. They are the people who give without expecting anything in return. The wise soul on social media is able to distinguish the givers from the takers – the real-deal people from the empty opportunists. They can find and connect with people like you and the 7 Graces community you have built – people who seek the higher good of a win-win relationship for client and provider.
But just because ethical marketers don’t expect anything in return doesn’t mean they don’t get anything from their efforts. I know from experience that when you take the time to do your homework and partner with the right people, you will easily reap the benefits of social-media marketing.
LYNN: Why do you think social media is important for the business owner today? What advantages come to those who spend the time to master it for their businesses?
DEB: The primary advantage is that you are able to connect with like-minded people from all around the world. That opens up a whole new world of partners and potential clients/customers. This is what I love most about it. I believe that we are whom we associate with, and if we associate with genuinely enthusiastic people of honest intent, it will always breed success.
People’s wants and needs, desires and hopes, struggles and successes are all the same under the skin suit. There are about 7 billion people on the planet today and, regardless of what continents they happen to live on, many of them are seeking the solution you have to their problems – both personal and professional. Being available on social media enables us to help more people solve those problems and make their lives and/or businesses better.
It’s important to remember that when you take the time to build real ‘social media relationships’, you are actually building real relationships with real people. And real people create real results.
LYNN: In your experience, what are the practical and/or emotional obstacles most business owners face when they first try to use social media? What advice do you have to help them leap over those hurdles?
DEB: My first piece of advice would be to remember:
‘Small hinges open big doors!’
It is so important to redefine social-media success and not buy the lie that more is always better. Is success defined merely by how many Twitter followers or Facebook fans someone has? It shouldn’t be; you don’t know how many of those fans and followers have been purchased for the sake of appearance. People who ‘buy’ fans may have followers, but they don’t have people. They may have numbers, but not clients. They may even make a quick sale here and there, but they do not have a thriving business of loyal customers.
I know it’s difficult not to get wrapped up in the emotional element of the social-media rat race, but when you compare, you despair. You are in competition with no one except yourself. Making progress is itself perfection. I always advise people to create a profile on each of the ‘big four’ social networks: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+. I believe true success begins as soon as you create an account. It means you have begun. Simply being present with integrity and the intention to offer real value is the foundation for true success.
And this is another point I feel compelled to share: please do not be shaken, surprised or discouraged when you get the inevitable negative post, Tweet or bad review. There will always be people who are jealous, hateful and mean for no reason. If you put yourself out there in the world, you must expect the bad with the good. The key is to learn from these experiences.
Remain humble, and keep moving forward. Be pushed by your passion, not pulled by your problems.
LYNN: You and I met several years ago when we were participating in the ‘Next Top Spiritual Author’ contest. I find it really interesting that both you and I now work with business owners on their marketing. Do you think there’s a connection between a spiritual mindset and marketing? And if so, how is it different from other approaches to marketing?
DEB: Yes, I absolutely think there’s a connection, Lynn!
I have discovered a new generation and global movement. A new hybrid niche of business and spirituality/self-help has been born.
Business owners and marketers are finally waking up to the fact people want to be treated like people and not sales statistics. Modern consumers are asking more questions around ethics and values. They want to know things like: ‘What do you offer that is unique? What is different about you? Do you just want to make a quick sale, or are you interested in learning about what I do, too? Do you want to compete or collaborate? Are you honest in what you are marketing to me? Can I trust you?’
To succeed in business today, we must put people first and product second. If you have a great product, it will eventually catch on. Keep high standards with each person you have the privilege to meet; do the right thing in the right way, and the results will be a natural consequence of your hard work.
LYNN: You’ve called your e-book Social Media for the Rest of Us. That makes me want to ask: Who are ‘the rest of us’? Whom specifically is this book for? Why did you feel this particular audience needed a special guide to social media?
DEB: The ‘rest of us’ are people who want to learn practical tips to using the big four social media platforms but are driven to do it ethically and with passion, persistence and a long-term vision of success. This can include anyone from the beginner to the seasoned professional.
The ‘rest of us’ are people who actually care about people! We care about getting positive results, but we are not willing to compromise our moral compasses to get there.
The ‘rest of us’ have a conscience.
LYNN: I know your e-book launched earlier this month. Can you give people a brief overview of what they’ll learn from it when they buy it?
In the book, I share tips I have taken years to grasp through both the school of hard knocks and hours of detailed research. I wanted to appeal to the person who likes easy-to-understand, transparent explanations and learns better with visual graphics.
In the book, I talk about the differences and advantages of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+. I show people how to create compelling and searchable profiles and how to find their niche audiences. I talk about how to spot the frauds and how to measure your success using Klout and Kred.
I also tell where readers can to go for more information on each platform with experts they can really trust to tell them the truth – such as you, Lynn.
It was also important for me to create something affordable – under two dollars – for people on a budget. That way, I’m hoping anyone, beginner or veteran, can find something of real value to implement immediately.
One of my customers left a review on Amazon that said, ‘I am recommending to all my friends!’ To me, this sums up the key point of our discussion today. Success in ethical marketing can be measured in how your customers answer one straight-forward, common-sense question:
Would you recommend this person, product or service to a friend?
If they say yes, you’ve done your job as a marketer.
In parting, I’d like to leave your readers with one last word of encouragement:
Keep going and don’t quit.
Remember: it takes time to become an overnight success.
29 August 2014
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Find out more about how changing the paradigm can help make the world a better place:
The 7 Graces of Marketing: how to heal humanity and the planet by changing the way we sell, by Lynn Serafinn, where you can learn how the 7 Deadly Sins and the 7 Graces impact the world through media and marketing. Brit Writers Awards Finalist eLit Book Awards Silver Medal in Humanitarian & Ecological Social Issues
Tweep-e-licious: 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market Their Business Ethically by Lynn Serafinn, which can help you learn how to create meaningful collaborations through Twitter and other social media. eLit Book Awards Bronze Medal in Business and Sales.
Get instant access to a free 90-minute Twitter marketing class at http://tweepelicious.com
The Social Entrepreneur’s Guide to Successful Blogging: An Effective, Creative & Ethical Way of Marketing for Visionaries & New Paradigm Business Leaders. To receive an update when that book is available, just click here. As a thank-you gift for showing your interest, you’ll get instant access to an exclusive, free 5-page PDF revealing the exact same blogging template we use with our clients and we teach to participants on the ethical marketing training courses at the 7 Graces Project.
LYNN SERAFINN, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing — How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell and Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market their Business Ethically. She is listed in the Top 20 of the Top Marketing Authors on Twitter by Social Media Magazine and was a finalist for the prestigious Brit Writers Awards. She also received the eLit Book Awards Silver Medal in Humanitarian and Ecological Social Affairs, as well as the Bronze Medal in Business and Sales. Lynn’s eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. Her innovative marketing campaigns have produced a long list of bestselling non-fiction authors through her company Spirit Authors.
Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project CIC, a not-for-profit social enterprise created to train, support, mentor and inspire independent business owners to market their business ethically, serve society and planet, and restore all that is best about humanity.
(not just for Londoners, as we meet also on Skype)