When should you be in your own commercials?

Mirror For the last couple days, we've explored why it's usually not a good idea for business owners to star in their own marketing materials.   As with all things in the marketing world, there are of course, exceptions.

There are a couple circumstances when you need to be the face of your organization.

1)  If you are small enough that you ARE the business:  If you are a solo consultant or shopkeeper and your customers interface with you and only you – don't have someone else stand in for you.  (Note: In this case, odds are you shouldn't be on TV at all!)

2)  If your brand position is that you're THE expert in your field:  If you possess some specialized expertise or credentials that form the basis for your position in the marketplace, then you need to be careful that you don't accidentally misrepresent that.  (Again, hard to imagine that TV or radio are your best options if this is the case.)

This gets to the comment Gavin Heaton posted in one of the earlier posts.  Where do podcasts, vlogs, etc. come into this.  When you are imparting information, sharing knowledge, teaching etc. — then it is perfectly appropriate to be the star.  It's also appropriate for you to sound like you, with the occasional "um" or slip of the tongue.

3)  If you are of "celebrity" status in your community or field:  This is a tricky one.  Many of us may think we're more famous than perhaps we are.  If you have a spouse or friend who is brutally honest – ask them. 

Just to clarify – I am not saying you can't or shouldn't use professional talent.  I am saying that in these specific circumstances, you may be better off representing yourself.   If your radio or TV spot is coming from the consumer's voice or is from a broader perspective, then by all means use the pros.

The bottom line is still the same.  99% of the time, you having the starring role in your own marketing is not sending the message you want to send.  Don't take my word for it. The e-mails and comments on this topic were about 100 to 1 in favor of you not doing it.

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