With a great voice comes great responsibility

With a great voice comes great responsibility and it’s something to be very considerate of when pushing to become a leading voice. When becoming outspoken you can expect a higher level of marketing, more engagement and an increase in sales, but without consideration of what you’re saying things can very quickly come crumbling down.

How can you sell this for such a low price…

Gerald Ratner, the former Chief executive of the major British jewellery company Ratners Group was a leading voice within the jewellery industry and amongst High Street retailers. But on 21st April 1991 while guesting speaking at an Institute of Directors event, Gerald Ratner replied to a simple question, a question that most of us would consider a unique opportunity to use one of those tried-and-tested elevator pitches. But Gerald responded with a comment that no one to this day has understood why…

“How can you sell this for such a low price?”, I say, “because it’s total crap.”

“sold a pair of earrings for under a pound, which is cheaper than a shrimp sandwich from Marks and Spencer, but probably wouldn’t last as long.”

Gerald’s business came crashing down within seconds. With the company’s shares dropping £500 million in a matter of days.

Now this is an extreme case of where it went wrong and there’s many more like it. But I wanted to include Gerald Ratner in this blog to highlight the importance of aligning what you do, and say, to your business and sales strategy. It’s arguable that Gerald got what he deserved for creating a product and service that he himself didn’t believe in. But by knowing the intended outcome of your leading voice activity, these are some of the results you can expect…

The benefits for your business in becoming a leading voice.

You will generate more sales.

That goes without saying. The louder you are, the more you’re able to make people think, and relate your topic or industry to them, will make you and your services ever more important. People will come to realise that they need your service and you in particular. Your sales will increase.

Often your opinions will come with challenges as not everyone thinks like you. Don’t let these distract you from the exposure you’ve achieved and the sales you’re able to make

Stand above your competitors

I recently learnt an interesting statistic regarding Linkedin, Of the 500 million total LinkedIn users and 250 million monthly active users, only 3 million share content on a weekly basis – just a touch over 1% of monthly users.

So, of all the content you see each day when using Linkedin the leading voices of each industry or sector are clearly standing above their competitors and proving themselves as an authority. Even though I don’t have the statistics for offline activity I’m sure networking groups share the same characteristics.

Some of your competitors may already be a leading voice in your sector, it’s doesn’t mean you can’t. You just need to be different and find your own position within your sector, and by analysing what your competitors are doing and how they’re stopping you from doing what you want to do you’ll soon find how to either be different or stand above your competitors and be seen as an authority in your sector.

Become more trusted.

If Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, Michelle Mone or Warren Buffett walked into a room and told you that they were going to teach everyone in that room the thing that made them a billionaire and how you can do the same, there wouldn’t be too many people asking for proof or credentials. They are the leading voices of their industry to the tribe that follows them and that is the part that matters most, the tribe that follows them.

Just because their tribe is bigger than yours does not make you any less trusted or what you have to say any less important. Offering something that adds value to their personal life or business will make you trusted.

Follow the path of becoming a leading voice.

These are just a few of the results you can expect when setting yourself up as a leading voice. But remember your success will only be truly measured when your activity is part of your business/sales strategy. Finally, it’s important to keep in mind what it is you stand for, having a purpose in everything you do, and doing it in the right way.

Further reading & next steps.

Be a leading voice for your industry.

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