INSIDE Inside Sales – Ep 123: Building Your Personal Brand

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Some say that hard work, determination, and commitment are the most important attributes to achieve success in sales, but what about your personal brand?

In this week’s episode of INSIDE Inside Sales, Darryl teams up with Alistair Neal, business recruitment rockstar and Paiger’s VP of Americas, to discuss the importance of building a strong online presence and putting your name in front of the right people. Learn how to develop and utilize your personal branding to showcase your expertise, leverage social media like a pro, and organically attract potential customers. Subscribe now and discover how to build a brand that shines!

''It’s really not hard to have a simple opinion. If you’re worried about people being negative, #LinkedIn tends to be a pretty safe place in terms of negativity, there’s not too much controversy.'' ~ @AlistairAtBean #PersonalBrand Click To Tweet






Host: Darryl PraillVanillaSoft

Guest: Alistair NealPaiger


Welcome Alistair Neal

Darryl Praill: We are back, folks. How’s everybody doing? It’s another week. You’ve been okay? Talk to me. Now for those regular listeners of the show, and there are millions worldwide, at least that’s my claim and I’m stickin’ to it, last week we had the good, I threw you a curve ball, didn’t I? I threw you a curve ball and you thought you were gonna listen to me, and instead I did an encore presentation of a brand new podcast we have goin’ on here called “The 0 to 5 Million.” And that features Shawn Finder and Ollie Whitfield. And that’s a new show intended to focus on entrepreneurs and how you kickstart a company, and start from nothing or almost nothing, and you physically drive it and grow it.

Darryl Praill: Okay, keep that in mind. If you haven’t listened to it, go back. You can listen to that last episode here and you can check it out. And the first one was with Peter Caputa, formerly of HubSpot. He was there nine years, helped drive them to massive, massive numbers. Now the CEO of Databox, a dashboarding reporting analytics company, with special emphasis on their HubSpot and Salesforce integrations, amongst other things. And he’s got some great stories. When he went from HubSpot to Databox, even though he was CEO, he was their one and only sales rep. Talk about the life of an entrepreneur, all right?

Darryl Praill: And that’s what it’s all about. So check that out. If you really like it, you don’t have to listen to my last episode, just go to your favorite app and subscribe, do a search on “0 to 5 Million,” and you’ll find it. But a couple things that are interesting there. One is the fact that that focused on entrepreneurs, right? So how do you grow and get visibility on you? The second part is a little bit related, is how do you scale that across your organization?

Darryl Praill: So what was interesting, on a parallel track, we were having conversations over the last several months internally here at VanillaSoft. And it was conversations around how many inbound referrals that I personally get, just because of my reputation. And I’m not saying it’s a good reputation. I’m not saying I’m a poster child. I’m simply saying, because I have some reputation in the industry that there’s a number of people who literally come seeking me when they have sales issues, wondering if our solution might be something they should evaluate. And the beauty of that is that it’s free. You know, I didn’t pay a damn thing to have these people come and kick the tires on my platform.

Darryl Praill: That was magnified when we acquired Autoklose and Shawn Finder joined the team. ‘Cause Shawn himself has got a similar reputation. Ollie Whitfield of the UK is doing a great job building his reputation. I’ve had a number of people come back to me in referring to him as the next Chris Orlob or the next Devin Reid. So again, building his personal reputation. All three of us are doing gangbusters and getting a couple things happening. One is, as I mentioned, those inbound leads, those inquiries, but the other part is getting referrals, word-of-mouth. So maybe they don’t know why us but they know somebody who knows us, and they say, check these guys out based on that, which is kinda cool. Referrals and direct inbounds, high intent. Talk about easy sales, assuming it’s the right fit. That was interesting.

Darryl Praill: But as we were having that conversation recently, the whole thing was around, how do we get the rest of our organization to do this? You know, so we’re busy on Slack, we’re sharing LinkedIn. We have a LinkedIn amplification channel to try to amplify, and our own little pods. Reps see this transpiring, they want it themselves, but we see over and over again where they don’t actually make the effort, without sounding judgmental, to become their own brand, to become their own inbound reputation-driven machine.

Darryl Praill: And when you ask ’em about it, ’cause this frustrates me as the CRO, it frustrates me to know, and I imagine if you have a sales boss, it frustrates them as well if you’re not doing this. Because we will give you the tools, we will teach you, we will train you, and you’re not doin’ it, and I bang my head against the wall. So then we’re havin’ these conversations, well, how can we get around that? So then we talked about the whole idea of employee engagement, employee advocacy. So you start to realize we’ve got some themes goin’ on here. We got, how do I drive more high-quality inbound leads at minimal costs? How do I develop my people?

Darryl Praill: And then the last theme from the last episode was talkin’ about entrepreneurs and co-founders, and the like, and scaling. And it all comes together on this topic today. I wanna talk to you about literally this, employee advocacy and your personal brand. And the right person to have this conversation, if you don’t know him, let me introduce you to Alistair Neal. Now, Alistair, he’s the VP of Americas for Paiger, P-a-i-g-e-r. Secretly, between you and I, he’s also a co-founder. So he knows this entrepreneurial thing and he knows this scaling thing. Paiger, if you’re not familiar and you’ve been living under a rock, it is the award-winning marketing tool for recruitment, bringing sales and marketing together. Now that’s only part of what he does. He’s also the host of “Fails and Prevails.” Really, I should rephrase this as being “Sales Fails and Prevails.”

Darryl Praill: And that’s really fun, you gotta check that out. It’s actually, it’s a daily briefing of the highs and the lows of being in sales and marketing. So Alistair, he’s the man bringin’ that to you. And he interviews guests every single day to have a laugh, give a boost to everyone in sales and marketing. So, sidebar, you should listen to it. And if you yourself have a fail or prevail story, you might wanna go and drop him a note and say, “Hey, I wanna share it with the crowd.” So with that said, Alistair, welcome to the show, my friend.

Alistair Neal: Thank you for the intro there, Darryl. Thank you, thank you so much for having me. Appreciate it.

Building Your Personal Brand

Darryl Praill: All right. So, and by the way, while we’re waiting, folks, go follow him on LinkedIn, okay? It’s literally Alistair Neal, A-l-i-s-t-a-i-r N-e-a-l, I mean, it’s one word. You know, the classic He’s also on Twitter, check him out. Talk to me, my friend. I’ve set the stage a little bit. I mentioned employee advocacy and personal branding. Is that the term you would use? And if not, what is the definition you would use? And then I wanna get into why we should be doin’ this or why we’re not doin’ it. What are the excuses you see?

Alistair Neal: Yeah, absolutely so, and that is how I would describe it. You know, employee advocacy, it’s you have company content. You want your employees to be out there being advocates for you. And then personal branding, it’s all about just letting the world know who you are. My mom always told me that 90, 95% of life is just showing up, right? Like just be present. And especially with the pandemic, everybody is very present on social media. So part of success is simply just being there, just having your name in front of people and letting them know who you are and what you’re about on a business front.

Darryl Praill: I love your mom’s, and I’m sorry, I don’t wanna interrupt you, but whenever a mom is involved, I have to stop and comment. Just showing up. That’s like an awesome rule in life and especially in sales. True story, I was sitting at my desk couple days ago, it was 6:30 at night, and I see a notification coming in. I get notified every time somebody is on our chat, and nobody answers the chat, ’cause it drives me nuts. And we had this note come in saying, “I’m sitting here waiting on this demo and nobody’s showin’ up.” And I’m like freaking out, you know? Like why would you not show up when it comes to sales? Good news is, we did show up, we got the deal, life is grand. Bad news is I popped a cork to make that happen. So talk to me. So when I say personal branding or employee advocacy, what’s your definition of personal branding? Is it being somebody who’s a bigger-than-life rep, a legend on social media doin’ the speaking circuit, being in high demand, being engaged and retained to do all these sales kickoffs. Is that what we’re talkin’ about?

Alistair Neal: Not at all. That’s for like the 1% of experts out there, right? For the 99, rest of us, it’s all about just having a presence. It’s about, you know, everybody’s at least some level of an expert in your field. We all have imposter syndrome to some extent, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is talking about it, right? And if you’re not an expert, you can always use other people’s content or comment on what they’re talking about. ‘Cause we all have thoughts and it’s always worthwhile sharing them. The reason for that is, if you’re always, A, if you’re out there talking about your industry, you’re gonna naturally learn more about it, right?

Alistair Neal: If it’s in your consciousness, if you’re looking at competition and talking to their posts, and reading what they’re saying, that’s great. But if you’re out there talking about yourself, A, in order to do it, you’re gonna learn more about it, which is always crucial for sales, right? And then, B, people are gonna know that you’re out there talking about it, and let me bring you an example. There’s a guy that I follow on LinkedIn. He always does this thing called “The Red Jacket Report.” I’ve watched very little of his actual information, right, but I know that he’s out there constantly talking about it. And it’s in my consciousness of, if I need to talk to somebody about an applicant tracking system, he’s the first person I’m gonna go to, simply because I’ve seen his name and the fact that he’s talking about it over and over again, even though I haven’t actually consumed all of his content, right?

Alistair Neal: And you as an example, I consider you a sales expert. I’ve done enough research to kind of come to this podcast to know who you are and what you’re about, and especially what VanillaSoft does. And that’s simply because I’ve seen you show up. I see you posting, I see you comment on things, and it leads to that curiosity of who is this person out there, what could I talk to him about, what should I learn about him? And it’s all about people seeing your name, your company name, what you’re talking about, and that’s how you develop that brand. You don’t have to be an expert. You just have to show up and talk about it.

Darryl Praill: All right, so I agree with everything you’re saying, and it’s true. And in fact, ironically, everything you were saying about the example you just gave, “The Red Jacket Report” and then that individual, was exactly how I open it up by saying, it’s amazing how many inbound leads I get from people simply saying, “I’ve seen you out there “and I think maybe you can help me,” which is pretty much what you just said. If I need that kind of solution, I know who I’m gonna go to first. Doesn’t mean they’re gonna get the deal, but that’s who you’re gonna go talk to first, and you’re gonna get educated and engage in a conversation. That’s what we see over and over again. And I love it. And it’s so fricking cheap.

Darryl Praill: Did I mention the cost of acquisition is low? I’m sorry, I’m speaking like a CRO for a second. And the best part is, this is so much good about, see, here’s the thing you didn’t mention, I’m surprised you didn’t mention it, but let me chirp in here. Even if you don’t pursue this for your own selfish sales interests, you should be doing exactly what Alistair was talking about for your own selfish career interests. In other words, what if your current gig, your current employer, doesn’t work out and you need to go, and yes, I just used my Canadian version of out on that, and you needed to go and find yourself a new job.

Darryl Praill: And then there was, you know, a gazillion applicants. How are you gonna stand out? Why are they gonna hire you? A lot of it is your personal brand. What about when you go back to your network and you say, “Dudes and dudettes, “I am looking for my next great adventure.” If you have a killer reputation, there’s a gazillion people out there, it’s a real number, look it up, and they’re gonna go advocate on your behalf saying, “Oh, my gosh, you have got to, “Alistair’s on the market. “We have got to evaluate. “Can we make a position for him? “Is there an opening? “Can we talk to him? “He’s available.” This rarely happens, all around personal brand. So it’s not just around sales, it’s around you and your career. So that’s me speaking selfishly, so.

Alistair Neal: Brings up a great anecdote. I follow somebody, I can’t think of her name, but that doesn’t matter because I know next time I scroll my feed, she’s gonna pop up there. And she wrote a post about I’ve got this really kick-ass sweet job, how did I get it? And it was, she said, I posted three times a week on LinkedIn for the last 12 months and established myself as an expert in this area simply by showing up and that’s how I got the job. And it’s like, it wasn’t easy, it wasn’t overnight. ‘Cause this is the thing with personal branding, is it’s not a, I posted twice, sit back and let the money roll in, let the job offers roll in. It’s about consistency. All right, it’s about, goin’ back to my example, it’s about showin’ up three times a week, right, with somethin’ to say or commenting on other people’s posts. That’s also super critical.

Darryl Praill: All right, so let’s talk about that. ‘Cause the biggest excuse I have is, “Darryl,” I’ve had a variety, but let me see if I can summarize it. “Darryl, I don’t have time, “that’s why I don’t do it, ’cause I’m busy closing deals, “damn it, don’t you know?” That’s number one. Number two, “Darryl, I’m not you.” This is what I get. You know, I don’t know the video thing or I don’t have an opinion. “Darryl, I don’t like conflict. “And if I put something out, an opinion out there “or a point of view, I will get shot down, “and I just, I don’t have time for the drama. “I don’t want to be attacked. “I don’t wanna be canceled, “so I just avoid it altogether.” Where else can we go to, “I don’t have enough followers.” That’s another one, or rejection. “I put something out there and I get no comments “and no likes, and I just wanna bury my head in the sand “and wish I’d never done it. “I’ve tried it and nobody ever engages with me.” These are the excuses I get. So let me ask you this, Alistair. How do I do it if I truly want to pursue this? ‘Cause you make it sound so easy.

Alistair Neal: Oh, that’s just because, well, it’s a double-edged sword. It is easy. It is easy to show up. It is easy to go, even if you could just start off by liking a post. Most people, they wanna know who likes their stuff, right? So if you just go out and start likin’ some posts, A, that person who’s posting gets a little rush of endorphin. That’s why we all post on social media, we need that little validation. So they’re gonna go see, hey, this person’s likin’ my post. Who are they, that’s gonna take ’em to your profile. And now they know your name and what you do, right. First step there.

Alistair Neal: So it’s not that hard to hit the old mouse button on the thumbs up there. So that’s the easiest thing you can do. And I mean, if you just scroll your feed for 10 minutes and just like the posts that you see, or follow a certain hashtag, go and like the stuff that you see, maybe 10% of those people are gonna go, oh, who is this person? They’re gonna see what you’re about, and they’re gonna start following you back.

Alistair Neal: So that is piece-of-cake, easy. The next step is comment on somebody’s post. It’s really not hard to have a simple opinion. If you’re worried about people being negative, LinkedIn tends to be a pretty safe place in terms of negativity, there’s not too much controversy. Not so much for Twitter or Facebook, but you know, if you’ve ready for it, hey, HTML6 is the future, and somebody comes in and says, no, it’s all JavaScript-based. Well, now you’ve probably learned something, increasing your own knowledge, which was beneficial, and somebody’s engaged with you, great.

Alistair Neal: So you’re off to the races and that’s gonna get more traction, get your name to more people. And then the third step is use other people’s content, right? It’s very hard to write your own content, but you can use other people’s content. If you see a blog post that you like, share that person’s blog. It’s great for them, you’re sharing that person’s blog. And also you can just write two sentences on it. Hey, really enjoyed point number three, I am, my personal experience, anecdote, anecdote, anecdote, done. That person now is gonna check you out, it’s in the same industry, they’re gonna see what you do and who you’re about, I’m sorry, who you are and what you’re about, and that’s done. And then the fourth step is create your own content, right, which is harder to do. But once you’ve started doing the first three things, coming up with other people’s content, you’ll find that it kind of naturally slides into that, right? Um, go ahead.

Darryl Praill: No, what I love about what you said, and you’re the first person I’ve heard put it that way, is you just kinda gave me a plan, all right. Kinda phase one, phase two, phase three, phase four. I find right away many people are overwhelmed by where do I start and what do I do. So some of the feedback I give people, on a related note, is I say, yes, I said, figure out the top influencers in the market. This is kind of my approach. In other words, okay, let’s look at who’s speaking at a variety of events. So let’s look at who’s quoted, let’s look at some of those bestselling authors, and let’s follow or connect with them. Let’s start with that.

Darryl Praill: And by the way, you send a connection request, personalize it, for the love of God, personalize it. “I just read your book, I saw you presented this show, “would really like to follow you.” And that just goes so far. That’s the starting point. Second, once you do that, you can engage on their content. And so it starts with likes, as you were saying. But if you can, add value. So that’s the kind of actual comment. How I did it when I was starting, because when I came at VanillaSoft, like everybody else, I’d had a LinkedIn profile for years and years and years, but I was the poster child for not really using it. And this is how I had to start.

Darryl Praill: And so what I started doing was I didn’t want conflict, I didn’t wanna be cancelled. So I would say, “Alistair, really like the point “you’re making here where you say A and B, love it. “In fact, I’ve seen huge success on B. “But your third point, C, I disagree with, and this is why. “And maybe instead of doing the way you do it, “I do it this way. “Thoughts?” So what I just did was I validated part of it, and then I was provocative on the other part of it, and more importantly, I took the time to be respectful. ‘Cause they actually put themselves out there in the first place, so I don’t wanna say, “You’re full of shit.” “Stupid,” you know, and away we go, right? You kind of reap what you sow.

Alistair Neal: Just write “Wrong!” exclamation point.

Darryl Praill: Wrong! Exactly. And when I did that, what was remarkable was these influencers, these best-selling authors, they’d have a gamillion, a gamillion, that’s another word, totally legit, likes. And they would respond to me because I was specific. It was amazing. All these other comments, “Attaboy, go, preach, truth!” got nothin’. But they would respond to me ’cause, “Darryl, that’s an interesting point about C. “Let’s talk about it.” Boom. Now what was, the second part I would do, I started there. I looked at, over and over again by following them, I started to see the same people engaging, to your point, right, oh, Alistair’s commenting. Oh, Joe’s commenting. Oh, Suzy’s commenting. Boom, follow them, all right?

Darryl Praill: So that was the second thing. And then again, contacts, connection requests. “Hey, Alistair, I saw you commenting on “all-star authors posts about ABC, loved your point of view. “Let’s connect.” So that started the, and it’s kind of a family tree. We started there at the root, then we branch out to the siblings, and then you go to Alistair’s followers and Alistair’s content. And before you know it, you’ve covered off a large portion of the people in your target audience. And then you can start, to your point, adding your own content to the mix. ‘Cause now you’re comfortable and you’ve got enough, let’s call it reputation and credibility with the tribe. And now it’s a safer place to go out and be bold. But even when you go out bold, you gotta actually, you gotta be either a good storyteller or you gotta be concise, to the point like you would on a sales call, right? Chorus and Gong measure how much time you’re talking, because obviously they don’t wanna talk forever. You wanna kinda make your point and then shut up. Social media can be the same way. So that’s, I love your way, okay. That’s the how.

Alistair Neal: I’m just gonna expand on that. You made a really good point around you see the people like the engagement pods, and you’ll see a post and five people come in and write “Great post, nice post.”

Darryl Praill: Yes.

Alistair Neal: There’s no value there. You have to say something, have an opinion, or show that you’ve at least read it, you know, right? You can’t just go write “Nice post” on everybody’s post. They’re like, this guy’s a jackass or he’s a robot. And there’s also negative brand value out there, right? So you have to be careful with how you engage, but be a human.

Darryl Praill: It’s a really huge, that’s a huge point you’re makin’ right now, ’cause there are a lot of bots out there that just auto-comment and auto-like, because they think that’s the way to go ’cause it’s a shorter form. It isn’t, they’re people. You gotta invest the time to actually have contacts. What I like doin’, I like cherry-picking the stuff they mention near the bottom of their post. Because a lotta people don’t get that far down. They just skim. And when you comment on that, you’re really sending a message to the poster that you’re commenting on that you’ve read their content, and they value, and you stand out. Trust me, you stand out. You totally stand out. I wanna bring in a sales angle here. A big thing that we do here at VanillaSoft, a lotta people are doin’ it, is the whole idea of account-based marketing. So if that’s, how does targeting your account, so there’s kinda like your tribe, right? But then there’s also your target accounts. Do you have an approach on how to engage with those specific people that you’re trying to sell into? ‘Cause usually what I get is I get a follow, and the first message I get is “Hi, Darryl. “My company does this. “Do you have 10 minutes?” And right away, I’m like unfollow. So that’s not-

Alistair Neal: That’s, you got a robot.

Darryl Praill: I mean, yes, hate it.

Alistair Neal: Those get ignored hands, I mean, they never get answered.

Darryl Praill: So talk to me, then. You talked about, you can share content, you can post your own content. You talked about like how much time in a day should I reserve to do this? So how much time should I reserve for actually being in social media just to engage, like, comment? How much time should I allocate for maybe building my network and then finding new people? How much time should I allocate for creating content? And then I wanna go into the whole content topic ’cause a lotta people got lost in the content, they don’t know where to start in content.

Alistair Neal: Yes, so I mean the time investment is whatever you can put into it. Start with the time you have, and as you see the success come in over time, you’re gonna naturally dedicate more and more time to it. And the account-based marketing bit you brought up there. So your goal as a salesperson is to get somebody to answer your email or pick up your phone call. Because, at the end of the day, if life was all inbound, that would be great. But the vast majority of salespeople are out there doing cold or semi-cold outreach, right? It’s just part of the sales game and most companies still survive with people doing outreach.

Alistair Neal: So the goal in outreach is to get as many responses as possible from your target market. Now, if I’ve seen your name and I know you’ve commented on my posts, there’s a natural, I know this person, ’cause I, you know, even though there’s not been any real interaction, there is a natural, I know this person. So when you do get a well-researched cold email that says, “Hey, I liked your post about X, Y, Z. “I’d love to talk to you about your focus areas “around sales software,” right? You have a much higher response rate. So you can sit down and send 100 cold emails to people that don’t know you and hope that you get 10 responses, right? But if you sit down and send 100 emails to people whose posts you’ve commented on, you’re gonna see your response rate go up dramatically. So maybe you just send 50 emails and take the time that you spent writing those 50 of the cold emails and dedicate it to talking to people and engaging with them on social media, all right?

Darryl Praill: Oh, oh, oh, I love that. And that’s something we haven’t even talked about. Let me stop there for a second. Okay, your personal brand, it doesn’t need to be far and wide. So let’s say you’re doing ABM and you’ve got 100 accounts in your target list and that’s it. You can build a personal brand up with just those 100 accounts. You don’t have to have 30,000 followers.

Alistair Neal: And I will say, when you’re coming on your target market’s posts, don’t say, “Hey, we fix this over at my company.” That’s the worst possible thing you can do, because then they’re like, going back to that negative energy. And then it’s like, this guy’s a jackass, he just wants my money, next. And then when you do send a cold email, you’re like, oh, this guy’s after my money, thanks. But engage with a non-sales mindset first. I can’t stress that enough.

Darryl Praill: So I’ll share for the folks what I typically do on a time commitment. Basically, I allocate about a half-hour a day or every other day. I mean, in all sincerity, sometimes I just don’t have time in my day. Often for me, it’s at the end of the day, after 5:00, which is not necessarily optimal for times, but that’s when I do it because that’s when I finally have time, and I go through and engage. Often, I also know, though, if there is something there, if there’s content that I want to make or put out there, or even some promotion, and here’s the thing. If you add enough value over your time on social as you build your brand, your audience, your tribe, will indulge you when you wanna do a little self-promotion. They’re okay with that. So when I’m in that point in time, and I maybe do that once a week, twice at the max, is I’ll do that in the morning. So I get in and I shoot a quick little video, and I trim it all up. Maybe I caption it. And by the way, if you’re doing video, you should always caption it. Because 90-plus percent of people are watching it with the sound off, they’re going through the timeline, but they’ll stop and look at captions.

Alistair Neal: And transcripts.

Darryl Praill: And transcripts, yes, absolutely. And that’s kinda my time. So when I’m doin’ a promotional piece of content, to me, this is like lead generation. This is business development. This is not social media, personal branding. This is something I’m doing to drive, to hit my number. When I’m, the half hour of the day when I’m actually engaging with the tribe, to me, that’s more like social. It could be a mindset thing, but that’s how I look at it as personally.

Alistair Neal: Yeah, absolutely. Going back to what you said about your self-promotion, classical Gary Vee, jab, jab, jab, left hook, right? So value, value, value, by the way, we do this, right? And those people aren’t gonna mind it, ’cause you’ve already added enough value that it’s like, oh, yeah, great. And now they’ve got another snippet of who you are and what you do. So then when that email comes in and that cold call gets made, they’re more likely to answer it.

Darryl Praill: And there are tricks to the trade. Just if you wanna optimize yourself, we haven’t talked about that. You know, some of the tricks, there is, what is it, don’t quote me on this one, it’s been too long now, like 310 characters, whatever, or 210, 210 characters in the opening paragraph before it says “Read more.” So if you wanna hook something, that little clickbait, do it in less than 210 characters. That’s your first thing, right? I think it’s a, what is it, 1,300 or 1,250 whatever total character count. So you gotta say it in that. A few hashtags. In my case, hashtag sales, hashtag marketing. You can have some fun. I always have a hashtag Prailltale if I’m telling a tale. If I’m sharing a story, it’s a Prailltale. If I’m not tellin’ a story, I don’t put Prailltale. You don’t include links ’cause the algorithm frowns on that. They don’t want you leaving, but you can go in the comments and include links. You wanna space out, you see a lotta spacing in a lot of posts. The spacing is for skimability.

Darryl Praill: All right, you put too much in one paragraph, people will just literally bounce off your post. But if they can skim it, they will. Tagging is okay if it’s contextual. So if I was talkin’ about employee advocacy, I could say, I was just in a podcast recording with @ Alistair Neal talking about the importance of personal brand and blah, blah, blah, and Alistair shared this. And then I could say, so then I went and checked out at Paiger to check out more about how they could help me out. That’s great. But when you hashtag 40 of your top influencers who barely know you, that’s gonna work against you and make you look really, really desperate. So don’t fall into some of those mistakes. These are simple things you can do, on LinkedIn especially. Talk to me, I’m gonna go back to Paiger for a second, ’cause it’s interesting about Paiger is-

Alistair Neal: I’m gonna jump in-

Darryl Praill: Go ahead. You wanna say something?

Alistair Neal: I wanna talk about like tagging people a little bit more. So in my 37 episodes, I’ve had some people with massive networks and some people with small networks that aren’t as active, right. And if you tag somebody that’s very active and has a massive network, at least in my anecdotal experience, I’ll get fewer views than if I tagged somebody who’s not that active, because LinkedIn algorithms go, hey, this person hasn’t posted in awhile, they’re in this post. Let’s show it to their network. Let’s get their name out there for ’em. So sometimes tagging folks that aren’t that active is actually more beneficial than tagging Gary Vee, right, when you’re just, it’s a BS tag. Sorry, I just wanted to jump on that.

Darryl Praill: You mean if I tag Gary Vee, he won’t come and check out who little old Darryl Praill is? Is that what you’re trying to say? That’s so bizarre.

Alistair Neal: Anti-taggers would be like this guy’s a, I should make a name for it, I don’t know if this name, this guy’s a faux tagger, right?

Darryl Praill: Yeah, this guy’s a tagger, he’s a poser.

Alistair Neal: Faux tagger, so they’re not gonna get much traction. I learned that because I had a great guest who’s like one of the top people in the recruitment industry, and the post got a fifth of the traction of everybody else, even though he was literally on my video, but just wasn’t out there. So anyways, back to what you were saying.

Darryl Praill: No, it’s true. Yeah, I wanna talk about scaling. So I opened up by saying I want my whole sales team to do this, not just me or a handful of people. And we’ve tried using Slack just to share links, and that gets some traction. We’ve reminded people as part of our ongoing training nonstop to do this, and they go, yeah, yeah. Paiger’s interesting, ’cause it’s actual employee advocacy. It’s a vehicle to literally help my sales team, and my marketing and everybody else who I want to really magnify each other. So talk to me about that. ‘Cause this is a really cool feature that a lotta people aren’t even aware of, is tools like yours out there that do this.

Alistair Neal: Um-hum, yeah, there are tools out there that do this. And what Paiger’s designed to do is help you do steps one through four without investing as much time as if you’re doing it manually. So let’s talk about company content. In my little step plan of likes, then comments, then your own content, start with the company content. Most firms out there have a company blog, or they have a marketing person that creates things that they would love for you to post. And so what Paiger does, it takes out the steps where you can just get that company content, and schedule it and send it out there.

Alistair Neal: Or the marketing person, if you’ve got somebody that’s real hands-on can say, “Hey, sales team, “I wrote this post just for you folks. “You don’t have to do anything. “Just let me post it on your page.” So you can actually have somebody kind of come in and get the company content out there. Or they may get, “Hey, here’s the post, “here’s the blog post. “Here’s an easy way to write two sentences on it “so you can brand yourself, and then send it out.” And then it’s got a bunch of other stuff that I don’t wanna dive into, but it’s really, the platform as a whole is, let’s take the marketing and turn your employees into personal branding and company branding experts without sucking up all their time.

Darryl Praill: That’s a wonderful, concise way of putting it. We’re out of time, but I love today’s conversation. ‘Cause today’s conversation wasn’t me and it wasn’t Alistair telling you folks that you need to be social media rock stars. What it was saying is that you do need to curate your own brand. You don’t need to be onstage. You don’t need to be a best-selling author, but you do need some reputation. Because, as Alistair said, when you’re doing the emails and you’re doing the phone calls, and you’re doing the outreaches, as you’re doing business development, name recognition results in a much higher response rate. Trust goes up dramatically. They’re listening to you when you’re talking about the issues. And if you’re not sure how to do it, well, then you can work with companies like Paiger. Check ’em out,, P-a-i-g-e-r, or better yet just follow Alister Neal. My friend, I enjoyed talking to you. Thank you so much. Everybody else, I expect you to post something right now, damn it, about this podcast and what you learned. It’s content. Tag me, tag Alistair. In the meantime, we’ll see you next week. Take care. Bye bye.

Alistair Neal: Thanks so much, Darryl.