I specialise in marketing for introverts. I help quiet, conscientious, sincere professionals, freelancers and small business owners be heard, seen & found in a loud and noisy world, without compromising who they are or their way of during business.
When Eugene, who fits the client-description above, asked my opinion on a new course he was about to purchase, I was actually stunned.
The glossy, sales page promised a template for all your business communication needs. It was written and packaged according to every cliché, gimmick and ‘hot’ tactic in the book. (One template is free, but to get the whole template package you had to buy the full, over-priced course!) Does this sound familiar?
Sacrificing your uniqueness for a one-size-fits-all template
– Why would Eugene, a quiet, honest professional, buy a product that promised to remove his own voice and replace it with a bland and hollow template?
– Why would he sacrifice his uniqueness to disappear into a sea of sameness?
Like so many self-employed & small business owners, Eugene offers a unique, personal service that he’s customised over the years for his niche. He’s truly one-of-a-kind, who cares deeply about his work and his clients.
And that’s precisely what makes him stand out.
However, Eugene doesn’t see it that way.
He doesn’t value his unique way of doing business because he is not even aware of it. Like so many conscientious, quiet business owners, Eugene struggles with marketing, especially with marketing on social media.
He explained to me why he thought this expensive offer would solve his marketing problems. It would allow him to get away from the pressure to be active ‘out there’! He doesn’t find social media ‘easy’. In fact, he finds it ‘exhausting and stressful’. Does this sound familiar?
The online world of communication was designed for extroverts – for people who love the excitement of being part of social activities. They feel energised ‘out there’ and thrive on pubic platforms. There’s nothing wrong with that.
But … between 25% and 45% of us are not energised participating in the public domain. We are actually exhausted by social activities. And Eugene is one of us.
As Susan Cain explains in her thought-provoking book on introverts, it’s not about how much or how little we like to socialise that defines whether or not we are introverted or extroverted. It’s about how socialising impacts on our energy levels.
Marketing for Introverts: Some Alternative Options
What are the options for introverts?
Erasing our uniqueness with a conventional template is NOT one of them.
I already talked about alternative approaches to marketing here beyond the conventional ‘pitch’-approach. Here’s some simple advice I give to my clients:
Don’t try to fit into a world that was not designed for you! Pay attention instead to what comes naturally and easily to you and develop that.
For example, a lot of quiet, sincere people like to write. If that’s you, then focus on developing your writing skills instead of spending time on what drains your energies. However, just writing posts and blogs alone is NOT an effective tactic. To ensure that the right audience finds your writing easily, you have to think strategically about how they will find you. Here are some options:
- Find publications in your area of expertise and submit your writing to an existing audience
- Depending on how often you write, spend time and energy on the SEO for about one in three/four of your posts
- Choose about two pages of your website and spend time on fully optimising the SEO for those pages
Develop Your Unique Voice
The golden rule for making it easy for the right audience to find is this. Focus on developing your unique voice and speak only to those who ‘get’ you, i.e. those who value your approach and your service.
And how do you do that on a practical level?
You can connect with those who value you on social media without creating a personality that is not aligned with who you are. Instead of trying to shout louder than everyone else and ‘go viral’, increase your presence instead by owning who you are and expressing that in an honest, transparent and meaningful way. Then, you can stop wasting your energies trying to ‘crunch the numbers’ and aim to connect on a human-to-human basis with fewer people. That allows you to build your credibility and connections slowly and more organically.
The same approach also applies when you attend a networking event. Stop trying to find clients and start building relationships. Connect at a personal level with one of two people. Listen to them. Ask questions. Respond to their answers and let the conversation develop organically. The best way to make an impression with someone is to let them know you’ve heard them, that you’re interested in them as a human being and not just as a number. Networking is about meeting people who will remember you and refer you on to those who need your services.
Successful Marketing is built on Long-Term Strategies
Communication begins with developing your own unique voice. It’s not something you can achieve in a week or a month. It’s a process that develops as you develop. You can get started on that important journey, by checking out my self-study course here.
It’s one of the best investments quiet, conscientious freelancers and business owners like you can make!