Business of Security Podcast – Exceeding Expectations

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In this episode I’ll answer an email from a podcast listener, we’re I’m heading to this week and why, and share my thoughts on exceeding expectations.

First up the email a received last week from Chris Kirkland:

If you have any questions about marketing, social media, website design or comments about the podcast please send me an email at lawrence.snow@gmail.com or call the podcast phone line at area code 781-369 -5185.

Where am I going to this week?

So where the heck I’m I going next week and why? Well I’ll be heading to Las Vegas for the International Executive Protection & Secure Transportation Conference. The conference is jointly hosted by EPI and ESI held yearly and focuses on the critical issues that are confronting security professionals worldwide.

I’m attending because this year’s conference has lined up a few great can’t miss speakers like Joe Autera, President and CEO of Vehicle Dynamics Institute,Filippo Marino, Director, Executive Protection & Intelligence McDonald’s Corporation and Richard Woods, Microsoft Global Security Department to name a few. I’m also attending to network, and to really talk about the issues from the guys and gals that do, not from those that pretend to do. I’ll have a full wrap up podcast in the next couple of weeks.  The conference dates are Dec 5 – 7.

The main topic for this podcast is Exceeding Expectations.

Here is a question I want you to honestly ask yourself: Are you Needs Improvement, Proficient, Outstanding or Exceeding Expectations in your personal and professional life? Are you exceeding expectations in all that you do?

There is a poignant poem that I mention in my Branding and Marketing eBook that is a must read. It’s called the Man in the Glass by Peter Dale Wimbrow Sr.

When you get what you want in your struggle for self
And the world makes you king for a day

Just go to the mirror and look at yourself
And see what that man has to say.

For it isn’t your father, or mother, or wife
Whose judgment upon you must pass

The fellow whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the one staring back from the glass.

He’s the fellow to please – never mind all the rest
For he’s with you, clear to the end

And you’ve passed your most difficult, dangerous test
If the man in the glass is your friend.

You may fool the whole world down the pathway of years
And get pats on the back as you pass

But your final reward will be heartache and tears
If you’ve cheated the man in the glass.

I want to thank you all for listening. If you are attending the EPIC conference this week give me a shout out on twitter at @lawrenceasnow and let’s meet up at the conference. I’ll see in the next episode.

Business of Security Podcast – Twitter Tips and Tools for Your Business

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Business of Security Podcast ArtworkOn to the main topic of Twitter tips and tools. It’s still amazing to me that I can connect and engage with folks I don’t know from Adam, and chat about subjects that I am passionate about. Like social media, internet marketing and the security industry. I think that Twitter is misunderstood and has received this bad rap that it is nothing more than teenage diatribes on what they ate for lunch. Well, there are those types of tweets but they are in the minority and if you are plagued with these tweets in your timeline you are just not following the right people. Twitter is so much more than that. It is the undisputed news source – before you see it anywhere online – you’ll see on Twitter.

If you are on Twitter I hope you are using it to its fullest potential.

If you are not on Twitter here are a few reasons why I think you should be:

  • Sharing your own business and industry news;
  • sharing your story of who you are, what you do, and who you do it for,
  • sharing of valuable information,
  • engaging and networking with like minded individuals in the industry.
  • Branding opportunities – cover art profile photo, sharing of images, and videos of what your business is and does.
  • Monitor your brand and your competitors. Who is talking about your company and what are they saying. Do they wish harm on my principal, where are they tweeting from? These are just a few of the reasons why you should be on Twitter.

Managing all that can be very time consuming. Fortunately there are several tools to help. One such product is Hootsuite – free and for pay (about $9 a month). I recommend the paid version. HootSuite provides a nice dashboard interface (recently redone). On one page, you can view different “panes” for your Twitter feed, Facebook feed, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc. It also lets you schedule your Tweets, which is very helpful, so you’re not tweeting throughout the day.

However, despite the automation and scheduling of tweets I recommend that whenever someone shares what you have posted, mentions you, or comments on something you do, follow up with them personally. Don’t ignore them.  Otherwise you are wasting your time using social media.

Managing your followers is another time consuming task. How do you know when someone unfollows you, what if all a follower is tweeting is spam? What if a follower stops tweeting altogether?

There are few great tools out there that can help you manage your followers and following. Manageflitter is probably the best Twitter cleaner – most of the functions are for free and it is the one I use exclusively. One click of a button and Manageflitter analyzes your followers and who you are following. Runner up to Manageflitter is Friendorfollow https://friendorfollow.com/.

Twitter Tools mentioned in this Podcast

  • Lists
  • Saved searches
  • Twitter widgets
  • Analytics

What I  share in this podcast is just the tip of what there is to know about Twitter.  My goal is to help protective services companies succeed in establishing and strengthening their brands on social media platforms. I am here as your guide to make that happen.

That’s a wrap for this week. If you have any questions or comments please reach out and contact me at lsnow@isdacenter.org or call the podcast phone line at 1781-369-5185 and leave a question or a comment.

Business of Security Podcast – Give People What They Want for Free

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In this podcast I’ll be sharing my feedback on the ASIS expo, from which I just returned and a pretty hard hitting, tough love kind of business talk on giving people what they want for free.

ASIS, or A-S-I-S, stands for the American Society for Industrial Security, and for the last 60 years the society has held a Expo. This year’s was in Atlanta, this is my second ASIS in Atlanta the first was a couple months after the summer Olympics in 1996. Over the last 20 years I’ve attended probably about 6 ASIS expos and as technology has grown in our personal life so as it in the products and tools for security. The last ASIS expo I went to previous to this one was in 2011 in Florida, and this one, seemed a bit smaller in attendance and the amount of booths. Most of the expo was made up of cameras and mobility of those cameras. The next biggest section was gates – for people and vehicles.; the rest was a hodge-podge of companies ranging from EP services and training to 5.11 tactical clothing. Insurance companies and universities like AMU, Texas A&M, Brandeis. But despite all the technology, data and apps it all comes down to handshakes, introductions and exchanging of business cards to network, tell your story, and share information.

A bit of advice for any conference – before you even set one foot into the hall – especially one the size of ASIS – do your homework on what businesses are going to be there and what value can you bring to them and vice versa. ASIS had an app just for the expo so it made it easier to plan your route and write in some notes. Make sure you know what your going to say before you meet folks who represent that business.

The most important takeaway from any expo, convention, conference, etc. is follow up with those that you met. Send them a simple email. In that email, remind them who you are and what you talked about. Give them your contact information. When should you follow up – as soon as possible.

There is much more that goes on at ASIS other than the expo check out asisonline.org for more information.The next expo will be in Anaheim CA.

free or discount concept with word key or keyboardOn to the main topic of today – Giving people what they want

Of course by people I mean your market – clients, colleagues, potential clients.

How do you know what they want? You ask!

Ask them through the ways you communicate with them. Email, social media, newsletters, magazines. Use a feedback form, or a small survey online, or print it and mail it back to you. Hearing from your customers supplies you with what they need, what their issues are; along with other demographics like business type, line of work, and location.

Organize this data and find commonalities. Find ways in which you can create content that will help solve your clients current and potential problems and other issues based on your knowledge and experience.

Then share this valuable useful content with your market freely and without any expectations to get in return. Sharing your knowledge on relevant subjects does 4 things: keeps your business top of mind; builds trust with your market; grows your business as the content is shared through word of mouth on social media networks; and separates you from your competitors.

What kind of content is considered valuable? Guy Kawasaki, a former evangelist at Apple, shared that there are three forms of value:

  • information,
  • analysis, and
  • assistance.

Information is defined as what just happened. It’s the important things you should know about. Analysis explains the information. Assistance explains how your company can help clients avoid dangerous situations. These types of value should be unique to you and your brand and should have a positive influence.

Examples of value might be: industry news; how you solved a problem; your perspectives on a particular product or service; a safety checklist; or a how-to on a new product or service.

Stand out as a real human being who has faced and overcome challenges. Tell a real story from your heart, from your gut, a life lesson.

How do you share it? Through social media, email newsletters, white papers, blog posts, videos, podcasts, interviews and more. Some of you reading this will think that you are not a writer. You don’t have to be Ernest Hemingway – just give it a try. A typical article on the Web is roughly 500-800 words. It doesn’t have to be perfect.

Although I have talked mostly about sharing content for free – you can also share your time and resources for free. Take time to talk to your clients, potential clients and colleagues – whether it is through email, on the phone or in person. Be accessible and available for questions, feedback, and give honest answers. Make connections even with your competitors. For example a competitor has put together a small seminar and asked you if you’d like to speak at it for free. If you’re available why not? Each connection gives you the opportunity to share your story, your brand, and what makes you, you.

Creating valuable useful content built on strategic goals , on a consistent basis, and marketing it correctly – takes time and energy and money – but it is very worth your investment as it will build your business, increase brand awareness, build trust among your market and will make you an authority on content topics.

That’s a wrap. Thanks for listening. I’d love to hear from you. You can send your comments to lawrence.snow@gmail.com or call and leave a message on the show’s hotline – 1-781-369-5185. For show notes and to read more about the business of security go to larrysnow.me. I’ll see you in the next episode where I’ll be sharing a few tips on Twitter.