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Posts Tagged ‘marketing’

PostHeaderIcon The keys to the kingdom…

I was talking to a long-time client on the phone earlier today who is shifting things and wants me to start printing checks for him. It’s a fairly easy thing to do. About half my clients still use checks on a regular basis. For them, it’s fairly easy, we just set up their check for use on our check stock and MiCR printer, get a scan of their signature to use (unless they want us to mail to them to sign and mail – most just give us their signature though), and off-we-go. Other clients use online banking (well, we do it for them most of the time), but most do a mixture of both.

Anyway, it was interesting because this is a big step for him. Giving access to his checking account like that. For me, I know there’s nothing I’m going to do with it, would do with it – or, really, could do with it. Writing myself a big check would be, well… stupid.

It also kind of made me laugh because I have such a wide variety of clients and how they look at their banking information. We are, of course, fully insured, but some hand me the keys to the kingdom with a big sigh of relief while others protect it with their lives. I do have some in-between, others that are handling like this particular client – doling it out slowly, but it’s true that they run the gamut.

It’s just interesting because there are things in my personal and business life myself that I an open with (Google me and you’ll find my personal family page and we’re pretty open on there) and other things that I keep very private. I think because we work virtually, it makes everything a little different. I know that when I tell people that I’ve never met over half of my clients they are shocked, but it’s true. I have clients from all over the United States.

I’ll be honest and say that those who hand me the keys to their kingdom make my life easier. We’re able to keep their books up-to-date in a more timely fashion, we don’t have to wait for a statement to get emailed to us, etc. We can log into their account, update their file, pay their bills and send them an update every 7-14 days or so.

But… I also recognize that not all clients are comfortable with that. Some would prefer to work off of statements only and want to review it themselves. I have some that send me every scrap of paper they get. I have some that make notes. I think the most important part is flexibility. Clients are flexible with us. Almost all of our team will be spending next week out of touch and they are all cool with it, it is our annual conference and we’re going to have fun (and learn, of course). We are also flexible with them. If they want to hand us the keys and run away screaming, we take the keys and redecorate. If they don’t, we just suggest moving a knick-knack now and then.

PostHeaderIcon Phooey on social media privacy

As with most of what I read these days, someone (Denise over at Aday VA actually) posted (tweeted) a link to this article “Social Media Privacy? Get Over It.

It’s interesting and a conversation I’ve had over and over with colleagues and friends. How much is too much information? I’m pretty open, I don’t lock or require authorization to read anything I do on social media. I talk about my kids, my reading habits, links to free Kindle books, review restaurants, complain about a client or two, rave about more than a few clients, retweet articles, I’ve probably even dropped the F-word a time or two.

I figure that at this stage in my life and career, I am who I am. I have a few people I follow that are all business all the time. Those are the ones that I tend to ignore, to be honest. It’s not all that interesting to know that yes, you are looking for clients. Get in line, honey.

So, today, if someone is following me on Twitter or Facebook, they know that my kid is sick (and has made me sick), I’m reading Under The Dome by Stephen King, my other kid had clarinet lessons last night, I have a new client I’m having a hard time getting to let go, and I just celebrated my birthday and 17 years of marriage to my husband.

Do I think you can over-share? You betcha. I’m sure if you look hard enough you’ll find things I’ve said that were inappropriate and maybe not very politically correct. But that’s also kind of how I am in real life. I can throw appropriateness out the door and be very unPC. I’m okay with that. I don’t drunkenly post or post about my late night exploits, but it’s okay to commiserate with a colleague about how her kid won’t sleep or with a client who absolutely loved the most recent movie they watched. I’m not going to hide who I am.

I mentioned above that all business is kinda boring. But I also think that your followers/friends/whatever should know what you do. Every now and then, I think it’s important to remind people “Oh yeah, hey, I’m a real estate agent” – or whatever – by saying you closed a sale or you did this or that. I follow people that forget to do that and I have absolutely no idea what they do unless I follow through to their profile information (which admittedly people don’t do all that often after the initial add). I aim to keep my stuff 80-90% personal. Seems high, but how interesting is bookkeeping – I mean really?

My point? I think it’s okay to be yourself and open about it. Others don’t, but I have yet to find a good defining reason as to why not. People cite crazies finding out where you live or where you are at. Well, frankly, that’s easy enough with public records or just dumb luck. There are so many things to be worried about – social media just isn’t one of them for me.

What is your thoughts on social media? Are we all too open? Too reserved? How do you handle your own privacy issues surrounding social media?