Ensure you can be found on Google for the right things

Andrew Ford, Social Star, how to be found on Google.png

The importance of Google when someone refers you to a colleague is vital to that new client contacting you.

Most people realise the importance of Google when applying for jobs or getting clients for their business, it's pretty obvious right. But from my experience of dealing with hundreds of business leaders, most don't know what Google says about them. So I ask you, have you Googled yourself lately? If you haven't, pause and do that now...

What did you find? Were LinkedIn and your website first and second links? If not, did your brand get confused with someone else with the same name? Perhaps you changed your name when you got married or moved countries or everyone knows you by your nickname. Maybe you can't be found at all!

In all of these situations, someone who doesn't know you, but has been referred for your service is making a snap judgment about you by what they find. So what do they perceive about you? If you can't be found, perhaps your not that good or successful. If there is negative links attached to your name, they might assume it is about you, when it isn't. If they got Facebook as the first link, does it help them make a decision to work with you?

They are likely to have had a few referrals for the service they want to purchase so you get about 5 -10 seconds to impress them. Or not...

You can't control their perception, but you can modify what they find in Google. In this, and the next few blogs, we will piece together a solution to this important problem. Here is the first few tips...

Do great work

Before you start to modify your Google links, it’s important to realise that you will only be recommended if you do great work. You need to delight your current clients, otherwise, they will not talk about you with enthusiasm. Without providing quality work as the basis for your referral, the Google effort will be wasted. So ensure you get this right first.

A great way to measure your referral readiness is to ask the ‘Ultimate Question’. This one survey question called the Net Promoter Score which trumps all others according to the creator Fred Reichheld, who wrote a whole book on the topic!

You can read a review of this book here, but to make it easy for you to adopt this method into your personal marketing, begin asking your clients this question:

‘Out of 10, how likely would you be to recommend me to your friend or client?’

If you score between 0-6, you get a negative point, 7-8 is neutral and 9-10 is a positive point.

Add them all together and you have an easily measurable score on how others perceive your work. This is a very short summary of a complex system, so check their website if you are interested in learning more.

Know what they are searching for

Most people don't realise that there are three ways clients can find you:

  1. Your name

  2. Your business name, and

  3. Your product name.

It's important you can be found for all three but it depends on the type of business you run. For service providers in 85% of cases, they will refer you by your name. e.g. your local accountant, business coach or lawyer. For mid to larger companies it might be a referral to the organisation such as KPMG. For other companies that are more product based it could be the product itself, such as the Key Person of Influence Program (KPI). All of these are service-based businesses, the difference is what emphasis the owners put on which element of their brands.

The most compelling brand arrangement is to be referred and respected for all three! A difficult task to be sure but one worth aspiring too if you have ambitions of building a large business in the future.

The classic example is Steve Jobs, Apple, and iPhone. Or more locally Daniel Priestley, Dent, Key Person of Influence. Jules Lund, Tribe, Tribe Influencer app. (Luckily I have written blogs about all three!)

It's best to understand what Google says about all three brands you have. Furthermore, if you have multiple businesses and many products you will have a lot more searches to be known for.

Let me illustrate what I mean by using my brand as an example. I am a consultant and thus deal directly with clients so get many referrals for my name 'Andrew Ford' so if you Google me, I will come upon page one for LinkedIn, my personal website www.andrewford.com.au and a few other links. There are photos of my image on the page and also a Google Business Listing on the right-hand side. Hopefully, if someone is looking for me, they can easily find me.

I also get referrals for my businesses "Social Star" and "BYOB Social Club". When you Google those words the websites come up first due to natural SEO as they are a direct hit for the search term and not many people have the same names. That is why choosing a name that you can 'own' on the web is so important.

However, when we get to product searches this is where it gets tricky. Social Star provides personal branding services and BYOB Social Club is a business networking group. If you Google those words we don't come up high at all! In fact, depending on the geographic location you search from and your previous browsing history, we might not appear.

Therefore, if we were getting referrals for our products only because we failed to create strong personal brands or business, we have to spend a lot of money to stand out from the competition on Google AdWords or Facebook marketing.

Plus, these referrals don't have a preference for our specific service. They only want a product so they are more price-sensitive and less loyal than someone who really wants Andrew Ford or Social Star.

It’s important that you can be found for all three searches so over the next three blogs we will provide details on how to maximise each one.  



PS Can't wait for the next blog to come out? Love your motivation! Head to our website and grab a copy of the eBook with all the content free here.

Andrew Ford

Marketing expert Andrew Ford, the founder of Social Star, has discovered the secret of ‘Powerful Branding’. With a fire for unleashing people’s inner brand and developing business models to generate profit from an individual’s passions, Andrew leverages ground-breaking digital and social media marketing techniques to create digital strategies for clients to attract maximum opportunities. Having established a strong name for himself in the field, Andrew blends traditional business techniques with now-necessary tools for entrepreneurs to achieve scale, quality, and influence in their niche. Andrew’s comprehensive business background and qualifications consist of a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) (RMIT 2003), a Graduate Certificate in Management (MBA Executive Program, University of Sydney 2005), and a Masters of Entrepreneurship and Innovation (Swinburne University 2011). Continually on the cutting edge of his own education, Andrew has tested his marketing theories in forums such as the BCG Business Strategy Competition, which he won in 2005 against all Victorian MBA schools, and the Venture Cup Business Plan Competition (Swinburne University 2003), which he won in the Masters category. With experience working at Hewlett-Packard, Sensis (Telstra) and IBM, Andrew also has mentored dozens of junior staffs to help them achieve their professional goals. Meeting and influencing high-profile public figures helped Andrew to realise just how many professionals require more understanding and control of their public brands or appearance, and need help with the skills to use the many amazing free tools at their disposal to generate success. At Social Star, Andrew consults with clients to uncover their personal brand – both where it is today and where it can be tomorrow – and refine and define how that should be displayed in social media in order to attract their perfect target audience. Andrew mentors his clients to rapidly grow their business’ audiences, resulting in larger potential client bases and higher revenue. Applying formulas that integrate over twenty years of Andrew’s business experience and fifteen years of formal business education, Social Star specialises in building clarity and velocity for clients’ brands using the ‘Understand, Build and Leverage’ methodology. ‘Having a Personal Business enables people to have an authentic, congruent connection with their valued clients and partners, using their brand as the bridge,’ says Andrew. ‘I’m highly driven to work with the new breed of entrepreneurs and small business owners – people who have a passion for making the world a better place. Traditional business models are stepping aside as people follow their innermost dreams and my role is to see them operate within their values while creating wealth. Some people think you have to sacrifice what you love to be successful in your business, yet it is actually the opposite. Follow your passion and success will come.’ Lecturing at Swinburne University from 2009 to 2011 on brand dynamics and digital marketing, presenting at numerous conferences, and consulting to hundreds of clients, Andrew has seen his philosophy work that if you follow your unique path, based on your skills, experience, values and goals, you will automatically attract the opportunities you desire and achieve the success you deserve. Living his mantra, Andrew has created a successful business and attracts high-profile clients including musicians, athletes, authors, models, entrepreneurs, professionals and small business owners, helping them find their ‘why’ in their business and fulfilment in their lives. Business for Andrew is more than work, it’s personal. Running a personal business means that he is able to fulfil all of his values rather than separating his life from work. It supports his two boys while providing social opportunities, educational development, fitness opportunities, spiritual fulfilment and many valuable friendships. Social Star has now become the vehicle for Andrew to crystallise his mission in the world, to help people love what they do, supporting his ‘why’, that if more people loved what they did, the world would be a better place.