New Zealand’s only Global Speaking Fellow and international bestselling author on entrepreneurship, Mike Handcock, is urging small business owners to dial back on social media in favour of authentic relationships and purposeful business – which are the real keys to successful business.
Speaking ahead of the Global Speakers Summit (GSS) to be hosted at Sky City in Auckland in late February – which will feature 72 speakers from among world’s top business thought leaders – Handcock said relationships remain the core of business success throughout the world and contrary to what many people say, you cannot have a relationship through social media.
“You go online to take people offline. Social media is only useful in so far as it provides a huge pond of potential customers, but as soon as you make contact, take them offline and start focussing on relationship – nobody wants to do business with machines; we want authentic connection.”
Handcock, who has spoken at numerous conference and entrepreneurial events in more than 40 countries, said there are two fundamentals to succeeding in business no matter where you are in the world.
“Authentic relationships and treating your customers as human beings is one of those two fundamentals, but you get to relationship by answering the question ‘why’. Your reason ‘why’ is the second fundamental of doing business in this age.
“While social media is often all about what we’re doing now – reporting and reacting in real-time – people aren’t interested in that. They do, however, want to know your ‘why’. They’re not interested if you just want to make a million dollars and retire early – they want to know how what you’re doing is making the world a better place,” Handcock said.
The Global Speakers Summit will be an ideal opportunity for companies – SMEs or corporates and government organisations – that want to get in touch with their ‘why’.
Brought to Auckland by The National Speakers Association of New Zealand (NSANZ), the GSS is an opportunity to start the discussion here in New Zealand about how business can make the world a better place and still make a profit.
Handcock said that while social media does have its own place, his advice would be to keep it simple – focus on one, maybe two, social media platforms your customers frequent and go about using those platforms to connect with customers through your ‘why’.
“A sale happens after trust and confidence is built and the fastest way to trust and confidence is through authentic relationships – not using technology to keep people at arm’s length.
“The moment you connect on social media – and that person fits your customer profile – you should be looking to move the relationship offline. This may be an exclusive event targeted to their interests.”
Mike Handcock will chair GSS 2018, which will feature speakers such as female Black Hawk pilot and combat veteran, bestselling author Elizabeth McCormick, Australia’s ‘The Relationship Guy’ Lindsay Adams (CSP) and author and speaker on business creativity Fredrik Härén who, Forbes magazine writes, owns multiple islands where he lets people stay for free.
The 2018 Global Speakers Summit in Auckland is only the 5th worldwide event to be held since 2000 and is expected to earn the city more than $2 million in revenue – a considerable achievement because Auckland had to be beat out Monaco, the USA, Germany, the UK, Australia, Singapore and Malaysia for the rights.
Part of New Zealand’s business case was the opportunity for corporate companies to purchase a table at GSS 2018, where those attending will be treated to stories about triumph over adversity, meet high profile thought leaders and learn how to tell their own compelling stories, write a book or succeed in online marketing, or unravel the mysteries of science, spirituality and entrepreneurship.
Handcock went on to win Speaker of the Year and Educator of the Year 2018 in New Zealand and was recognised globally at the summit.