Today, I spoke to Jeffrey Gitomer, who is the author of The New York Times best sellers The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Black Book of Connections, and in2008, Jeffrey was inducted into the National Speaker Association’s Speaker Hall of Fame. In this interview, Jeffrey talks about how he got started, what he feels his brand is, what the most effective medium is, and personal branding mistakes that he’s made. He’s also having a social media event we are having in Philadelphia on September 14th, 2010. If you want to attend, use PHILLY20 to get 20% off.
Jeffrey, how did you get started? What was the tipping point to your success?
The tipping point of my success was March 22nd, 1992. That is the day my first column was published in the Charlotte Business Journal. Since that day, every penny I have earned I can trace back to something that I wrote.
What is your personal brand and how have you grown it into becoming the top sales guru?
My personal brand is my name and it’s my website and it’s the books I write. It’s my email magazine and it’s my social media handle and it’s my public seminars. The color RED and my little books are also part of my personal brand. Everything I do has continuity and consistency so that my brand is recognizable.
You use a lot of different media to get your voice out there (email, video, social networks, etc). What is the most effective for you, sales wise?
If there was one effective method, that’s the only one I would use. But it turns out that it’s a blend of media that creates a collective response. The Internet is beginning to lead the way, but my books, my airport and bookstore positioning, and my public seminars have played a major role in building and growing my brand.
How did you originally identify your core audience? How did you capture feedback and adjust to their needs throughout your career?
I didn’t do either. I knew my audience was salespeople and anyone involved in needing sales (entrepreneurs, CEOs, etc) and all I did was deliver what I knew to be true. The rest took care of itself.
What branding mistakes have you made and how did you correct them?
I would summarize my errors in three words, “Not Early Enough.” Those three words apply to not sophisticating my website, not getting deeply involved with social media, and not creating courseware that mirrored my books. I’m sure there are others, but I don’t know what they are because I have not identified them yet.
Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The New York Times best sellers The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, The Little Black Book of Connections, and The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude. Jeffrey’s books have sold millions of copies worldwide. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts Internet training programs on selling and customer service at www.trainone.com. In August, 2008, Jeffrey was inducted into the National Speaker Association’s Speaker Hall of Fame. Jeffrey’s customers include Coca-Cola, D.R. Horton, Caterpillar, BMW, AT&T Wireless, MacGregor Golf, Ferguson Enterprises, Kimpton Hotels, and Hilton. He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.