Your Real Name and Photo Are Essential in Social Media

When I help direct selling companies write policy for social media, I encourage those companies to require consultants to use their photo and real, full name on social media presences, including blogs and social networks.  Sometimes I’m asked why a company should require this.

Here’s the thing…imagine if you were doing business in person with someone.  Would you say, “Hi, my name is Karen’s Beauty Emporium”?  Of course not.  You’d lead with your name.  Someone would be able to look you in the eye, and do business with a person.

Online is no different.  When we try to be anonymous, hiding behind a logo and a cutesy name, we’re missing the point of direct sales.  Our profession is about face to face contact, and the relationships we build.  I have to be able to see your face, and look you in the eye. In the online world, that translates into a photo where you’re looking at the camera.  If you lead with your logo, I”ll never be able to build a relationship with you.  You’re already shutting me off.

Don’t try to hide behind the anonymity of the web when doing business online.  Approach this just like you would your in-person business: face forward.  Your real name and your photo are essential, if you’re to build the relationships that lead to new business.

Your thoughts?  Would love to read them in the comments!

5 Responses to Your Real Name and Photo Are Essential in Social Media
  1. Margo
    September 30, 2010 | 6:21 pm

    Hey Jen!

    Like many other direct sellers, my first instinct was NOT to do this. I had pretty good response to my SM marketing and felt like if it wasn’t broke, I shouldn’t fix it. Then a few months ago my company decided that it would require all it’s consultants to put their full names and the company logo on their blogs. So? I complied-and am I ever GLAD! I couldn’t believe the difference having my *full* name in the sidebar made in the traffic and feedback I got. MANY more of my existing customers were able to find me online and refer their friends to me. What a forehead-slapper! I really felt silly for not seeing the value of this myself. Of course people who like you are going to look for you BY NAME. Thanks for calling attention to this. Even though it seems like a no-brainer, it’s clearly not!

  2. Pam Leveritt
    September 24, 2010 | 9:20 pm

    Thanks Jen for a great article.
    It was really helpful.
    Now I get it.
    Take Care.
    Pam Leveritt.

  3. Jennifer Wassenaar
    September 24, 2010 | 12:39 pm

    My company just rolled out a new logo and some of the consultants were using it for their profile pic. We were nicely reminded that it is a copyright infringement and that it could be misleading to customers. The company wants the customers to know they are doing business with a consultant, not the Home Office. It’s all about the personal touch–that’s what makes the difference in our industry.

  4. michelle kelley
    September 24, 2010 | 11:21 am

    I agree! I have often tried to connect with a new contact on Facebook only to find pages of people with the same name with pictures of their dog, children or favorite sports team instead of themselves. It’s like meeting someone and then trying to find them at a costume party!
    Thank you for all of your wise words, Jen!
    Michelle Kelley

  5. Ryan Biddulph
    September 24, 2010 | 10:52 am

    Hi Jen,

    This is a no brainer. To this day I’ve never done business with a logo 😉 Use your name and add a smiling photo to increase your credibility and nice-ability too, which goes a long way in establishing relationships.

    Have a great weekend 🙂


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