It’s not easy being an entrepreneur, especially if what you have to offer is a service rather that a physical product. When you are offering a service you are really offering YOU and marketing YOU can be challenging.
I have found that marketing ME requires me to be comfortable not only with being visible in a greater way than perhaps someone else but also with allowing my vulnerability to show.
When YOU are the connection that your customer has to what it is you offer, then you have to share who you are at a level you would not otherwise.
Now what do I mean?
Am I asking you to tell the world every little thing about your day and what you are experiencing minute by minute?
Of course not (although we all know people who do just that).
What I am asking you to do is tell your story…
…Share the unique journey that makes you YOU and no one else.
When you share your story you are connecting heart to heart with another person, one at a time or many. Your stories are what connect you with others, heart to heart and mind to mind. Your stories are what has others recognizing themselves in YOU and empathizing with you.
Here’s an example. I recently spoke at a writers conference and read a memoir piece I have been working on. I told the story of being five years old and in my kindergarten school play. I was given one line to say and when it came my time to say my line I stood on my stubby legs and belted it out.
And the audience . . . . laughed. And I was embarrassed.
I didn’t know at five that they were laughing because I must have just been adorable. I thought I had done something wrong.
So at age five I began to be more careful about what I said and how much enthusiasm I displayed. At age five I started to hide who I truly was.
And that small story is key to understanding how I became someone who helps others find their authentic voice. My journey to rediscover mine led me to the work I do in the world whether through my counseling, teaching or writing.
Think about how you felt reading my story of five-year-old me. Could you see her and feel how she must have felt? I can, even now. I still want to wrap her up in the biggest hug and tell her everything is going to be Ok and that she is perfect just as she is.
So if you are an entrepreneur, here are my three easy steps to marketing YOU:
I know that sounds simple but it’s not. To really know yourself you have to be able to share what it is that YOU uniquely bring to your business and your clients. Why is your passion for your service what it is? How did it become the work you do in the world? In answering those questions you will find your stories and those stories are the ones you want to share with your clients and customers.
Focus on what is going right.
Someone said to me recently that she was depressed because she could see a couple of people unsubscribing from her newsletter every month. When I asked her how many new subscribes she was getting, she had to stop and look it up. It was many more than her unsubscribes. Don’t take this stuff personally. People will subscribe or unsubscribe and it’s fine. Marketing is a process of refining your ideal market so know that the people who stay with you are your ideal clients. Focus on them and trust that the process works!
Meet your Market where it is.
If your clients respond to you more on social media than on your website BLOG, then market to them there. Your market tells you how to connect and what they want. And connecting is the way your business grows. As an entrepreneur you want to share your wisdom and inspiration and do so often. And use Social Media to connect first and foremost, not to sell. Only sell every once in a long while – connect, inspire, motivate, encourage and uplift the rest of the time. All those quotes and images spread the warm fuzzies and you want those fuzzies connected to you and your business.
I know what you are thinking – this stuff takes effort!
Yes, it does. And, like you, it isn’t second nature to me. I have to schedule my posts on social media just like I have to schedule writing my BLOG pieces for numerologist.com. If I left it up to when I might get around to it you wouldn’t hear from me. Connecting takes conscious effort and repetition.
I can’t wait to hear your stories. Blessings on your beautiful businesses!