083 - What Most People Don't Tell You About Personal Branding With Sam Winsbury

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About Sam

I used to be a struggling agency owner and confused student, desperately trying to make LinkedIn work for me. After a few months of trial and error I started having clients coming to me asking for help with their own profiles. Since then, and before the age of 21, I've gathered over half a million content views on LinkedIn and helped CEOs, founders and coaches build their personal brands. I now also contribute to Business2Community, one of the top 10 business blogs in the world and run my own podcast.

Resources

https://www.thatpersonalbrandingguy.com/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/samwinsbury/

Show Notes

Josh Tapp 0:01
What's up everybody? Josh Tapp here again, and welcome back to the lucky Titan podcast. So today we have Sam Winsbury on the mic. And I'm super stoked to have Sam here because Sam and I are both kind of kindred spirits when it comes to LinkedIn and leveraging the power of LinkedIn to generate business for your company. And also just as a branding tool. So we're going to be talking today, really about what most people don't know about personal branding. So Sam, say what's up to everybody, and then tell something interesting about yourself that most people don't know. Hey, guys. Hey, Josh, thank you very much for the warm introduction. It's a pleasure to be here. So something about me that most people don't know, probably that I'm actually a bit of a music snob. I kind of keep that hidden, especially on LinkedIn, and socials. I talk a lot about my personality, but not the fact that I'm a bit of a music snob. So yeah, and I think even people close to me don't really realize that I don't share it too much, but I'm big into music. So you have to tell us what genre then because
Sam Winsbury 1:03
They're like, yeah, listen to hip hop and write
everything from just so near so that tronic I could I could go on for
I can't really confine it to one genre.
Josh Tapp 1:17
Oh, good, cuz Yeah, I'm kind of a multifaceted music listener myself. But when you become an entrepreneur, you kind of lose your music side sometimes because you spend so much time studying or listen to podcasts or what have you. But like that happened to me, but yeah, so let's hop into the meat. Let's get into the meat potatoes. Right. So let's talk a little bit about personal branding. Give us a little bit of background on your personal branding experience, and then what you guys are doing right now to make it happen. Sure.
Sam Winsbury 1:47
So the way I got into it was almost by accident, actually. I was at the time I was almost running a marketing agency doing some traditional marketing stuff things like Facebook advertisement. I was using my LinkedIn profile to basically generate clients that someone had said to me, LinkedIn is the place to be. And I kind of thought is it really it's, I thought it was just this corporate environment where people get jobs and upload their resumes. But I tried it out. And what eventually started happening when I was posting content and work on my profile was people actually began reaching out to me for help with their LinkedIn profiles, rather than with things like Facebook advertising. So it was kind of just a natural transition that I made. And I thought, okay, if I can generate clients on here, and there's lots of other people coming to me wanting the same, there's, there's clearly an opportunity to do something here and to actually help people grow their businesses with it. So that's how I got into it. It's almost an accident if you like.
Josh Tapp 2:49
Those are the best businesses though. It just naturally goes into it. And, you know, a lot of people when it comes to LinkedIn, like you said, they view it as a corporate environment, they view it as kind of a resume builder. But you and I both know, it's it's one of the most powerful branding tools. So you talked about people coming to you and saying, hey, how do I, you know, how do I optimize my LinkedIn? What did you do specifically that sort of attracting people to come to you?
Sam Winsbury 3:16
Yeah. So it's largely focused around two or three core things. The first is your profile, you can generate all the views in the world. But if your profile is poor, and it doesn't clearly show who you help, what you help them achieve, and the results or credibility having doing so, then people aren't really going to be bothered. It's like, it's like paying for Facebook ads to drive someone to a website, but your website's terrible, right? It's not going to convert. So it's almost it's almost like your home that has to be in in tip top condition. The other two things are content. So LinkedIn at the moment for anyone who doesn't know is doing a similar thing to what Facebook did in the early 2000s. So the world ganic reach is super high. I mean, you can actually get your content your posts in front of thousands, hundreds of thousands of people very, very easily. And these are people that you're either connected to, so they know a little bit about what you're doing. They're not connected to you, so they have no idea or they've sort of seen your face around that aren't really sure. So you can connect with all these sorts of people and prove your expertise through your content, while growing your audience and driving those people to your profile. The third is relationships. You know, there are some people on LinkedIn that make their profile and they will just spam out tons and tons of first message sales. I'm sure probably everyone listening has received one and probably Yeah, you do get them they I doubt anyone has ever actually bought from them. So the people that are succeeding the most on LinkedIn are people that are building effective relationships. So I think those three things your profile your content, And the relationship you build in combination are probably the key to finding success on LinkedIn.
Josh Tapp 5:06
That's awesome. Yeah. And I really love the third piece of the relationship side. Because, you know, we talk about that a lot. But it's not about spamming out to people, right? I believe you can. And this is just kind of me, you might completely disagree with me on this. But that's what the show is for. Right? We can argue over, I believe you can automate the first message in connecting with people, because there's very specific algorithms where you can get people to connect with you. But I think that's where the automation has to stop, right? Because once they've connected with you, it's not about spamming them with messages. It's about hand picking the people and saying these are the type of like ideal customers.
Sam Winsbury 5:43
Sure, this is this is an interesting point, and I'm still actually undecided on it. So I think until very recently, you can definitely automate the first message so it's been very successful for a lot of people. But what we're starting to see nowadays is as that stuff is been used quite a lot over the last couple of years, people are developing a little bit of apprehension towards it. So whilst an automated connection request, if you like will actually get someone to connect with you, it kind of plants that seed of doubt in their mind as to your intentions. So whether you're actually willing to actually care about what they're doing, or whether you're simply better sell something. So whilst automating your connection requests probably won't get a lot of them turned down. Once you do connect with that person, there's gonna be that little bit of doubt, I guess, or suspicion about why you're actually connecting with them. So I think that's where the kind of manual side of things and really personalizing your request and connecting on that personal level first, can be more beneficial. But it's an interesting sort of transition period. We're in between the two at the moment.
Josh Tapp 6:52
Yeah. And we actually built a lot of our audience using those automated messages initially, and you bring up a good point. I mean, honestly, it might just be setting them up to fail at the beginning, there's, I think if you kind of have to gauge it so so when you say you reach out to them manually organically Like what? What are some of the methods you've been using to actually reach out to people? And finding them?
Sam Winsbury 7:16
Honestly? Yeah. So there's sort of two different sides of this. There's the finding them in the first place, what you can do is you can pay for Sales Navigator, which is something 7080 bucks a month, I think, yeah. And that, that gives you really targeted searches. And it allows you to boil down your searches to number of employees years in current experience. So if you're super, hyper targeted with your audience, it's a great way to actually find them. But what we're finding more and more is you can actually find fairly targeted fairly good leads through the normal search function, because it does actually have a lot of features. It has a lot of filtering options that you can do and you can use Boolean search. So Even without spending 7080 bucks a month, you can get pretty targeted search results. And you can find people that fit your client persona or your ideal prospects very neatly. Once you found them in terms of actually connecting, the best way I found is connecting, first of all on that personal level, don't go straight to business. Sure, that's probably what you're gonna end up talking about, especially on a platform like LinkedIn, that is tailored towards business, but actually connect on a personal level first, do that through things like mutual interests. So let's say I was reaching out to you, if you had a one liner in your ABOUT SECTION saying that you're a music lover, perfect. I'm going to use that. Because that's going to generate rapport between us it's going to build up a bit of trust. So I think, yeah, you can you can find pretty targeted people through the search function and then connect on a personal level, first of all,
Josh Tapp 8:51
that's awesome. Yeah, I do like that. And you kind of threw this in there. In passing. I think this is one of the most powerful functions in LinkedIn. So you Talk a little bit about the Boolean searches.
Sam Winsbury 9:02
Yeah. So for anyone that doesn't know, brilliant Search allows you to essentially search for more than one thing at a time. So you could search for CEO and founder rather than searching co founder normally by just typing the two in which is going to give you a list of people who have both those things in the tagline or both those things in their about section or throughout the profile. If you Boolean search them so i don't i don't get too intricate with how to actually do research you can find it fairly easy, but you can actually search for either of the profiles. And then by using functions like the or function and the and function and Boolean search, you can kind of target those people down so you can target them to fans or CEOs within certain niches within certain industries or with certain keywords within their profiles. That's where understanding your audience comes in a lot. And this is this baffles me how Many people try and market or try and sell a product without first understanding the people that they're trying to sell it to. Right once once you sort of understand them a lot more, you can use those keywords to connect with them more effectively.
Josh Tapp 10:13
Yeah, that's awesome. And thank you for bringing that in. Because I do think that that's a function that should be used. And one of the big things that a lot of people don't think about when using LinkedIn is if you use the dream 100 concept, right, you know, I don't know if you're familiar with that, but but, you know, reaching out to people who already have presence in other places, you know, people who have a podcast or they have a, you know, a big Facebook following or a big Instagram following or what have you. So you've heard of them, you've seen their content. They're a lot easier to connect with and like, then you think if you don't automate connect with them, right? You can handpick those people. And you can grow your presence pretty quickly. So, unless you GSM out you want to talk about on that end of things.
Sam Winsbury 10:54
No, no, I think you've nailed that. Really.
Josh Tapp 10:59
Just I want to now move on to especially as we're coming up to the end of our time here, but I want to ask you a little bit about your content strategy and what you're using. Because, you know, you've done this as a consultant, you've done done for you services for this, you know, you're somebody with a lot of experience in the LinkedIn space. What have you found to be kind of an effective content strategy? Because I mean, you have what, half a million views on your content this year?
Sam Winsbury 11:23
Yeah, that's well, in the last 12 months or so. So not in 2020. But over the last few months, yeah.
Josh Tapp 11:28
Yeah. That's, that's crazy. So yeah, but also on that a little bit.
Sam Winsbury 11:32
Yeah. So content is obviously a key part of how we want to use personal brand of our personal brand on LinkedIn, because, realistically, we don't want to be sat around spending hours reaching out to people every day. In an ideal world, people are coming to us and obviously, that's how my journey with personal branding started was through the content. And there was sort of three core forms and three core buckets of content that you want to post I'll distinguish between those two to three core forms are kind of overarching types of posts. And they are, I think we should be posting value posts. So where you're actually teaching something, there are educational proofing posts, which show your expertise show your experience that might be something like a case study, it might be a testimonial or current result, it might be a feature you've had in Forbes, for example. And the other is personal posts. So things that are actually personal to you about your personality, not so much to do with business, they might be related. But the focus is on who you are as a person that's going to allow people to actually relate to you. So that can be stories about your journey in entrepreneurship, some of the things I shared at the start about how I got into personal branding, for example, that's really key and getting people to relate to you, because that's going to build trust. So those are sort of the types of content you want to be posting and you can mix those up between text posts, videos, photos, infographics, you can be fairly flexible with that and encourage people to experiment with different types of content, you've then got buckets of content. So these are topics if you like. And generally you want to stick to three core topics. And that's going to vary from person to person. So for me, it would be things like personal branding, entrepreneurship, and content, right? Those are the three core things that I help people with. So they're going to be the things I want to post around and build up this perception of expertise around. So if you stick to those three, you're going to start to build up a really targeted following of people that are actually interested in those things. And those are going to be the people that you can actually help. That is
Josh Tapp 13:42
awesome. I love that. And I do want to ask you a couple questions about that, because I've actually never heard it explained that way. But I think that's really cool to put it into those three, I guess forms of content because I know for me, one of the ones I struggle with is the personal one. So I'm like what do I even post because my life is business. I guess that's my hobby. And so when it comes to that, what's kind of the gauge as far as how much of each you should be posting? Is that different per person? Or, you know, should you be posting more value posts than anything else?
Sam Winsbury 14:13
Yeah, I do think you should post more value posts. That's the strategy I've adopted. And I think it's best in terms of actually building up this brand for yourself as someone that is an expertise within your niche. Now you need to show your knowledge, and not just what you know, but your unique knowledge. So things, you know, through your experience that maybe other people aren't teaching is anyone can read a couple books and regurgitate what's been said. But it takes a lot more expertise to actually give you a unique insights on that or share something that you've learned through your experience. So yeah, I definitely recommend posting the majority value. If you're, let's say you're posting five times a week, you can split it up fairly easily by going three days posting value content or educational content, and then two days with a proofing post I suppose. So let's say you're posting five days a week or three and to split is a great way to, to divide it up.
Josh Tapp 15:07
Yeah, that's awesome. I know a lot of people even struggle with that, you know, as far as the teaching goes, but what have you found to be kind of the most effective way to come up with really good rock solid value? I know there's, there's times even where I'm like putting something out. I'm like, I'm not even loving this. Like, I gotta scrap it. So I don't have the time. But
Sam Winsbury 15:28
yeah, so again, it comes down to actually understand your audience. So knowing the things they want to know, there's loads of resources you can use to find that stuff. And I'd hope that most people have used things like core Google Trends onto the public. These are all free tools you can use to understand your audience and as well as just speaking to them, get to know them as people ask them questions, find out what they want to know. And in an ideal world, your product or your service is going to be tailored around those things. So one thing I found particularly useful and this is great for marketers and coaches is actually breaking down a program that you offer. So I will break down my full coaching program and just teach it week to week. So each week of my coaching program provides a topic that I can post about. And that's sort of an overall theme for the week that I can break down into five or six posts, I might write generally, or write a blog post about them. So that forms the basis of kind of a long form piece of content, I can break that long form piece of content down into five or six posts. And that way, you sort of never really run out of ideas. And actually, I found that the more ideas you come up with, so the more you start posting, and the more you get used to posting regularly, the more ideas you'll start to come up with. So it's kind of it spirals, which is quite nice. You've just got to get over that initial barrier of mind blocks. I guess
Josh Tapp 16:52
Greg was one of the core pieces of content. That's why I like when we talk about the buckets because if you kind of have your your framework, you know what you Build around, it becomes pretty easy to spin off little pieces of content. That's really cool. Well, Sam, you've brought a lot of value today. And I really appreciate you, you know, talking about what's actually working. That's what we're here to talk about, you know, and I would recommend to everybody to go apply what he's talked about, especially in the content strategy side, building, your profile, relationships, all of that. But on top of that, Sam, you actually help people to do this in their own on their own businesses, their own LinkedIn profile. So where can people reach out to you to be able to work with you?
Sam Winsbury 17:32
Yeah, the best place is just only on someone's real now you should be able to find me. I don't think there are too many others. I'll likely be at the top of the results if
Unknown Speaker 17:41
you weren't me.
Sam Winsbury 17:43
Yeah, I'm happy to connect with anyone listening over there.
Josh Tapp 17:46
Awesome. I love that. So go to say the handles at Sam Wednesbury and make sure you go connect with him whether you're going to work with him or not because Sam puts out some awesome content. And Sam thanks again for coming on the show. But before we sign off today, what One final parting piece of guidance you have for our audience. If you could just leave one thing with them, what would it be?
Sam Winsbury 18:06
show up and provide value.
Josh Tapp 18:08
Love it, show up and provide value. Well, Sam, thanks again for coming on the show today, man.
Sam Winsbury 18:14
Josh, thank you very much for having me. It's been a pleasure having you on
Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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