By Antoinette Sykes, Speaker
Bowie, MD USA

Yes, I Keep Up with The Kardashians, Mary Mary, and the Braxtons, plus a few Houswives to be truthful. Ok, Ok, Ok…I do indulge in my fair share of Reality TV. In fact, I fell in love with it back in the very initial launches of Real World (MTV) and Survivor! It was an escape from the normal life and mindless entertainment after a long day. Now, today Reality TV has certainly grown beyond the initial phases of sheer entertainment, where it’s truly BIG BUSINESS and dramedy at times. But, for the sake of this article, we’ll focus on BIG BUSINESS accordingly. Although, I welcome any comments on my Facebook page when you’re indulging yourself in reality tv episodes! (smile).
Did you know that Kim Kardashian is a top Tweeter on Twitter among celebrities? Did you also know that earlier this week, she reached 10M followers on Facebook alone? TEN MILLION! That’s a gargantuan number and the reach is equally. So, how does she do it? Why do people tune in and are hanging on every word she says or everything she wears or
every shake she creates at the Shake Shack? And, can you imagine the profit margin even if ONLY small percentage even purchased her lowest priced item? Do you see where I’m going with this? The power of Facebook and social media is beyond comprehension sometimes. And I LOVE the Internet, so you know I find this fascinating. Ahem…if you still DO NOT have a website, a blog, or a social media account…STOP and create one. In 2012, there is NO reason not to have an online presence. More on that later… Back to the regularly scheduled program…

If you’re wondering how to grow your social media presence like a Reality TV Star, then listen up. It’s not as far fetched as you may think. And please know that I am not a fan of “numbers for numbers sake”. Instead, I do care about the quality of the content and the benefit is the quantity of followers engaging with you. It’s time to learn and leverage online marketing and an online presence like never before. Here’s how:

Communicate Authentically- Just because you’re online and behind a computer, does not mean you can “hide”. And when I say hide, I mean hide your message, the real you and the essence of your business. Here’s the TRUTH, as a solo-preneur, we do not have the luxury of a marketing department down the hall or a communications department on the second floor of our office building, as we did in Corporate America. At that stage, those material pieces with information was handled by those departments and we simply used the documentation in our day to day work flow. A lot of times, the buck stops…and starts with US. This means, more than ever our “gem” is in communicating our message authentically. As with Reality TV, these stars let us into their world. **CAVEAT** we all want our privacy, so please choose how you share and what you share. For example, maybe mention that you are on vacation with your kids or something funny that one of them did versus showing pictures of your kids. By all means, operate within your comfort zone. You will find that your audience appreciates and honestly wants to know that you are a REAL person that is relatable and likable.

As a small business owner, we have the ability with social media to be pliable. And as a woman, we LOVE to share information, we LOVE to create things and we LOVE to have the freedom of our schedules to spend time with family, friends and kids. The internet and social media is IDEAL for women in business for that reason. In 2010 there were 7 BILLION people on earth and in 2010 about 23% of the worlds population were online. Do you see the potential of your “little corner of the world”. It’s way too advancing for you not to have a presence and a profit. Ok…I must say this in addition to Communicate Authentically…COMMUNICATE = RESPOND. You have to respond to communicate and engage in dialogue. Don’t merely make a post and fail to respond to someone who has left a comment or Tweet. Your audience is watching, waiting and yes…judging. Imagine how you’d feel if your favorite super star or reality TV star responded to YOUR Tweet or FB post? Show the same courtesy to your audience to begin to build relationship and exhibit authenticity.

Positioning – Do you think it’s a coincidence that each time the camera rolls, you see the DASH store or a bag imprinted with DASH; let alone during any conversation the mention of their store strategically slips into the storyline? Have you noticed also that those of us outside of the Calabasas, CA world didn’t know what a DASH store was….until…! This Kardashian Krew has positioned themselves (in my humble opinion) as a first family of reality TV. They have positioning
and branding so well. In fact, not only the Kardashians, but reality TV stars in general about walking billboards for themselves or an extension of a brand they’re representing. This translates into large loyal follwers. So, where can your brand be seen? How often are you seductively selling your brand and positioning your company as THE resource for….(fill in the blank)? Better yet, who else is talking or buzzing about your brand, your service, your product or you? I ask these questions to get you thinking and moving into action. Pay attention and at every moment, be seductive with what you say and how you say it about what you offer.

Big Picture Thinkers – Reality TV stars are extremely confident andcomfortable in their own skin (at least when the camera is rolling). Reality TV may start with the television show, then we want to know more, so we get connected online, then offline and then the sale is made. Reality TV has created wonderful platforms that is leveraged into social media. With the use of social media information about upcoming sales, product creation, charity fundraisers…you name it; can be shared. How can you use your business (platform) to share in other causes or offerings? Begin today!

Antoinette Sykes, MBA Success Coach & Speaker to faith driven entrepreneurs. Antoinette helps you step into your greatness with ridiculous faith and proven business growth strategies.