“Helping others to avoid the costs of a bad online presence” – Rodric Leerling

“Helping others to avoid the costs of a bad online presence” – Rodric Leerling

Rodric Leerling, Leerling.biz, Sales Power Provider, RefRod

People who run their own business should be aware of their online reputation. It can determine gaining new business or losing it to the competitor. Still, the return on investment building a sound online reputation is not always clear.

There are two sides in the ROI calculation: ‘estimated lost revenue’ – from negative articles and reviews, and ‘potential earned revenue’ – from a clear and positive presence. Research asking people how far they read using Google showed only 36% to look further than page 1, and 50% no further than page 1. The same survey asked people what a negative article or product review could do to their purchase decisions. Result: one negative article on page 1 means losing 22% of business. Consumers will stop calling you and turn to a competitor.

In the online business world, it’s not so much your price or state of the economy but simply attention. Your future customers need to know about you before they contact you. What makes you tick and what do you stand for? That’s why social media is so important to sales people these days. Marketers who focus on blogging (inbound marketing) are likely to get much more positive ROI by getting useful content in front of potential clients. Broadening the customer horizon and filling the sales pipeline.

Key to all this: who are you in real life and is this image the same online? What do you aspire to and where do you want to be in five years from now? Start working on that now. Decide on your key assets and define them. Make sure your Google images reflect who you are today. Start writing (small) blogs, check your online images, tag them well. Start googling yourself regularly and you will see the changes in the next 2-3 months.

“Creating Awareness for Need of Online Reputation Management” – Rodric Leerling

“Creating Awareness for Need of Online Reputation Management” – Rodric Leerling

Rodric Leerling - Sales Power Provider, CoolBrands, CBNWS,
Rodric Leerling – Sales Power Provider, CoolBrands People, Online Reputation Management

All your posted online content like blogs, comments, pictures, videos and social media posts draw a picture of who you are. It will greatly determine whether people want to meet and eventually do business with you.

Are those images really you? Or you, but in a shady situation. Or totally not you because you didn’t tag your own pictures well. So when you are googled (and people do that all the time) does the image people get from Google page 1 fit with what differentiates you in the current market?

Online Reputation Management (or: ORM) is all about creating a strong online presence, one that enhances the ‘off-line me’ and helps create your current business. But even more importantly, it will help your next business goals. Where do you want to be in five years? Positioning yourself should not just be based on your current business successes and skills, but also on other dimensions in life. You are more than just your job title.

Look in the online mirror. Go and google yourself.

“Changes in football: great to see more female refs” -Rodric Leerling

“Changes in football: great to see more female refs” -Rodric Leerling

Rodric Leerling, Leerling.biz, Sales Power Provider, RefRod, CoolBrandsPeople, Sportief Westfriesland.


It was a real pleasure to watch the 16 year young girl ref, acting with confidence this weekend. A promising performance at a boys U17 game where the rookie, long-haired, slim girl controlled the game from start to finish.

The boys looked surprised at first but once she started running and recognizing their fouls, they showed respect and behaved. With a slighr hick-up early 2nd half when a player was tackled and reacted lashed back. Suddenly two players were pushing their heads against each other and the ref clearly was holding back where shw should intervened and showb yellow. it didn’t blow over and at the free kick the ball was replaced by the fouled player. again a yellow card would be appropriate. I couldn’t resist and hit my chest to signal the neeed for cards. She picked it up and recovered quickly by taking xontrol again.

In our evaluation, we talked about the incidents and what went through her mind. It happened to me often and more than once realized I just didn’t have the guts to penalize more than one player. Told her that frankly to comfort her. It’s all very human.

“Social Media” – Rodric Leerling

Doha tower 11 2014Being invited to train people in an international school is a welcome deviation in the life of an ad sales man. Especially when it’s a school in an exotic location. Admission marketers working hard everyday getting the seats filled for next education season, only 3 months into the current school year. They were invited to join a 2-day training course to be initiated in the world of social media. Despite being inundated by work, they managed to keep their phones off and gave it their full attention. The national government demands a list by last day of November of all pupils attending next school year, so work was piling up in the meantime.

We talked about creating more virtual touchpoints with the help of social media tools like Twitter and YouTube where prospective parents would be able to get a good feeling about the school, the teachers and the USP’s of their teaching plan. Happening all before they visit the school website and schedule a (short) visit. How to become that ‘purple cow’ (Seth Godin) among the many international schools in their city – what makes them stand out of the crowd? Extra curriculum activities, mother tongue teaching, flexible child care before and after school hours. How to reach the new generation of parents, the millennials, who demand a mobile communication platform and look for multiple referrals before they decide on a purchase.

We set up some new online profiles, checked the competition and I helped them with first social media tool choices and suggested schedules to fill the tools with content. All in all, a heavy but satisfying training project with that neat extra touch of exotic destination to tick off the list of ‘been there, done that’.

“Elevator Pitch”- Rodric Leerling

elevator pitchIt was one of those weird meetings. The introduction call and elevator pitch on Friday morning had been successful. “Sounds like a great concept, let’s meet next week and show me a bit more”, was the reaction. I sent an Outlook invitation for Monday the following week.

But no reaction. As it was a Friday and the client seemed very busy, I didn’t worry. There was a date in my digital agenda and I even could work another meeting into the schedule. I even used a little trick and confirmed once again from my end before the weekend started and updated with a slightly later time slot. But still no confirmation, change or cancellation.

After two earlier meetings in town, I arrived on time at the prospect’s office. The 1st floor receptionist lady waved me in and I was picked up by another colleague at the main doors on 2nd. Told her whom I was meeting and got a cup of tea while ‘he was still in meetings’. And then a big silence. People came and went, briefly looking at me but no questions asked. I decided to start walking a bit to make sure I was noticed.

After 30 minutes, I decided it was time to take action and announce myself once again. The first person walking the corridor was approached and I told her I was waiting for so and so. Whether he was still in meetings? No, he is at his desk. Let me tell him you are waiting for him. The guy turned up and looked real puzzled. I had seen his pic on LinkedIn but he was now wearing spectacles. Why I was here? Our meeting was only ‘next week’. But this IS next week,  we spoke LAST week. Yes, but I’m extremely busy this week, didn’t check your email. Really sorry.

Well, how long do you have? I’m taking a 15 minutes coffee break. he told me. Great, that’s my other elevator pitch version. We went through the slides and  I repeated the key advantages of our platform. It worked. he was glad we made the quick tour after all and agreed for another bigger meeting in 2-3 weeks. I left his offices 45 minutes after entering. As always.


“A sales guy who never stops” – Rodric Leerling

It doesn’t happens very often, so it really took me by surprise. The lady I had found in my social network looked like the right person to talk to for my social media proposition. She also shared the same nationality and I tried the friendly native language approach, despite her probably English business environment.

Wrong choice, or just the wrong moment? I probably will never know, but she didn’t give me a chance and yelled at me why I called her! Well, that’s a question that can be answered in 30 seconds – the elevator pitch. Before I even could try to explain my reason and asking if she could help me find a better person, she just threw down the phone. So much for an international brand manager!

Ouch, that hurts. Of course, we sales people just start when we hear ‘no’, but I decided this time to leave it and dial another number. Just to get over it quickly and not to take it personal. The next person at the same company listened to me and suggested another colleague to talk to, who proved to be the right person. The door opened and he wanted to hear more.

I might bump into the bad-tempered brand person at my next visit. I will behave like a pro and will just tell her we have been on the phone, briefly, but maybe I should introduce myself properly this time?

Rodric Leerling


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Tags: Rodric, Leerling, Rodric Leerling, Sales Guy, Sales power, Sales power provider, Roderic, Roderick, Sales,

“Blogger and Author as Soccer Ref” – Rodric Leerling

While working and living in New Jersey, I used my skills and experience in soccer crazy Holland to ref games on weekends. It became an excellent way to discover the state of NJ and meet lots of people, starting with colleague refs, different level of teams and team coaches. So many good memories and also lots of weird situations unthinkable in the Dutch football tradition. I decided to record them and collect them into a booklet. Still available in the MijnBestseller store.

Rodric is US soccer ref 003
Soccer Referee in New Jersey
pic RL NK 2012 Scheveningen.3
Beach Soccer ref on Scheveningen beach 2013


pic RL EDO-VVC sept 8 2012 .2
Field Football ref in Haarlem, 2013
pic BS Middelburg ref team 062312
Beach Soccer ref team, Middelburg 2012
RefRod bookcover
RefRod in the USA, blogs about reffing soccer in NJ

“Sales Power Provider” – Rodric Leerling

Along the media rep contracts for longer term, I am also available for short term sales projects. This is where my Sales Power Provider service kicks in.

This could vary from short term sales power injection and help kick-start a new product or service to producing blog content for a busy manager. I wrote weekly blogs to help a busy sales director stay in the loop with his followers, challenging readers to react and think along. Another project consisted of finding research content to support a certain publishing cause (power of print).

But, sales power can also be provided like in the case of  the management pockets Below the Line. A white-label publishing concept where service providers in the financial sectors use the content in pocket format to wrap their own cover and write their own foreword and distribute among their prospects. Or the case of the start-up platform for sole-traders Victor Mundi.

Most recent cases of Sales Power Providing is PRonto, the GMA PR service that helps the marketing sector to communicate their latest news, notify the market of staff changes or expansion to fresh premises or new products/services.

DGA 2014 Cover+interview
DGA Pocket 2014
TomOtting Huisarts Pocket 2014
Huisarts Pocket (GP Pocket) 2014 launched! Celebrating with Tom Otting, publisher.
Rodric Leerling, Summer 2014


Victor Mundi, zzp platform, sole traders networking
“Crowd Sourcing” – Rodric Leerling

“Crowd Sourcing” – Rodric Leerling

Crowd Sourcing is the process of getting work or funding, usually online, from a crowd of people. The word is a combination of the words ‘crowd’ and ‘outsourcing’. The idea is to take work and outsource it to a crowd of workers.

“The demand for video advertising and content is outpacing the rate at which marketers can supply it. Crowd sourcing networks have emerged as a viable model to fill the gap in the video production supply chain”. (Forrester, 07/14/2011, Chris Stutzman)

Crowd Sourcing is considered a ‘disruptive technology’ as traditional sources for creating content (ad agencies) are joined by new, faster and cheaper channels such as crowd sourcing communities like Zooppa.com.

Crowdsourcing is a true disruptive technology

“Crowd Sourcing” – Rodric Leerling

New Zooppa logo 07 2013
crowdsourcing social video & graphics


“Augmented reality” – Rodric Leerling

Video games have been entertaining us for nearly 30 years, ever since Pong was introduced to arcades in the early 1970’s. Computer graphics have become much more sophisticated since then, and game graphics are pushing the barriers of photorealism. Now, researchers and engineers are pulling graphics out of your television screen or computer display and integrating them into real-world environments. This new technology, called augmented reality, blurs the line between what’s real and what’s computer-generated by enhancing what we see, hear, feel and smell.

Augmented reality is changing the way we view the world – or at least the way its users see the world. Picture yourself walking or driving down the street. With augmented-reality displays, which will eventually look much like a normal pair of glasses, informative graphics will appear in your field of view, and audio will coincide with whatever you see. These enhancements will be refreshed continually to reflect the movements of your head. Similar devices and applications already exist, particularly on smartphones like the iPhone.

AR image windmills
One of the first AR projects for GE wind energy
Rodric Leerling, sales power provider


AR image MINI
example of early AR idea for MINI

“Augmented reality” – Rodric Leerling