Let’s face it:
Self promotion for an introvert is no walk in the park.
The idea of “selling yourself” makes most of us want to crawl into a cave and hide. We’d much rather sit cozily on the couch, cup of tea in hand and computer on our laps, quietly getting on with the work that we love, alone.
And if we do need to make conversation, we’d much rather be doing the listening than the talking, preferably in an intimate setting rather than in a big, noisy group.
Even Susan Cain, author of the award-winning New York Times bestseller Quiet: The Power of Introverts in A World That Can’t Stop Talking admits that self promotion does not come naturally for her.
But to truly create the business and life we crave, to achieve our big dreams, we have to step off the sidelines and start being seen and heard. We need to find ways to become more visible in our businesses and yet, at the same time do it in a way that feels natural and nourishing to us.
So with that in mind, I reached out to 34 of the world’s leading business and marketing experts including Chris Brogan, Derek Sivers, Joanna Penn and Dorie Clark and asked each one:
What 3 self promotion tips for introverts would you recommend?
And oh wow, was I over the moon excited with the responses. The insightful advice our experts shared was nothing short of exceptional.
So if you’re looking for authentic and genuine ways to embrace self promotion and actionable tips to start getting noticed as an introvert, grab your cup of tea, get cozy and keep reading.
Here are all 34 of their responses – in their own words:
Nathalie Lussier – Digital Strategist at NathalieLussier.com and Founder of AmbitionAlly
- Work in your zone of genius: if you love to write, write. If you like audio, do interviews and podcasts. If you feel comfortable in front of the camera, do video. But don’t force yourself to do what doesn’t feel good to create content and connection.
- Reach out to people individually, it’s your strength as an introvert. Use it.
- Don’t think about how uncomfortable it is to promote yourself, instead focus on who you’re helping and what difference you’re making in their life.
Self promotion tip for introverts #1: Work in your zone of genius.
Chris Guillebeau – Entrepreneur, Bestselling Author, Speaker at The Art of Non-Conformity
- Understand what brings you energy. Most of us introverts know that we need plenty of alone time, so even though you need to promote (more on that coming up…) be sure you plan for breaks.
- Focus on outcomes, not time commitments. What I mean is that if you have something to promote, decide in advance what you need to do for it. Example: “Today I’ll write to 7 people about my new project.” Once that’s done, move on to other stuff. This focus helps because saying “Today I’ll spend an hour pitching my stuff” can feel overwhelming.
- Don’t answer the phone. There’s a reason voicemail exists! Set your boundaries and stick to them. Ultimately the best promotion you can do is to make your product or service truly amazing, so spend more time on that than anything else.
Self promotion tip for introverts #2: Set your boundaries and stick to them.
Tara Gentile – Business Strategist at Tara Gentile.com, Creator of Quiet Power Strategy
- Don’t try to make digital small talk. If you don’t have something you feel really passionate about saying, that’s okay. Put thought into what you put out into the world. Don’t just create content for content’s sake.
- Go with your strengths: listening, perception, and observation. Everyone thinks social media is for broadcasting your ideas, products, and platform. But it’s best strength is as a channel for listening to customers. Gather all the data you can and use it to make meaningful connections with the right people.
- Turn yourself or your brand into a character–but make sure it’s still the real you. High-performing introverts know that their public persona is more like a character–something we put on when we need to. But that persona still needs to be you or it won’t resonate with the people you’re reaching out to.
Self promotion tip for introverts #3: Go w/ yr strengths: listening, perception & observation.
Beth Buelow – Author, Speaker, Certified Professional Coach, Founder of The Introvert Entrepreneur
- Don’t think if it as self promotion. Even if it seems like you are your product (you’re a consultant, speaker, or coach, for instance), you’re still not promoting yourself; you’re promoting your solution. You and your energy are part of the package, but without your solution, there wouldn’t be anything to buy. Lead with what’s most important to the buyer. That will help you avoid the “look at me!” feeling you might experience if you focus too much on what people will think of you. Instead focus on how you want them to act on what you offer.
- Don’t think of it as promotion. And while we’re talking about “promotion,” let’s consider calling it something else. Like “sales,” the word “promotion” can cause us to get caught up in fear-based stories around money, value, perceived bragging, or competition. My preference is to reframe it according to how I want it to be received: as educating, inviting, building relationship, offering valuable information. When what you produce resonates, people will act.
- Do think of it as an integrated activity. In the best case scenario, every time you share content, you’re sending out an invitation, even if it doesn’t blatantly say “buy me.” You’re opening a feedback loop that will result in a wide range of interaction, from reading and commenting, to sharing an email address and buying. Inviting your audience to be part of that feedback loop should be an objective of all of your communications, not just the ones you’ve labeled as “marketing.
Self promotion tip for introverts #4: Don’t think of it as promotion. Reframe it.
Denise Duffield-Thomas – Money Mindset Mentor at Lucky Bitch
- Choose your preferred promotional tools. There’s no right answer to this, but you’re going to shine if you choose the right promotional tool for your message. If you hate doing video interviews, then seek out written or audio ones. As long as you’re upfront about it, people won’t mind. I personally LOVE doing videos instead of written blogs, and I love doing live interviews – but I feel like it’s really hard work to do live public speaking. Find the medium that will make you shine!
- Batch your content. The best thing I did was to batch my weekly content. Instead of making a new video every week, I’d make a month in advance (I actually now do a year in advance). This really works for introverts, because it fills the gaps when you “don’t feel like it” or you need some extra alone time. Sometimes I just can’t face being “out there” but when I’ve got content made well ahead of time, my promotional schedule doesn’t suffer. After all, if I did business when I “felt like it”, I probably wouldn’t have a business!
- Hire some gate-keepers. I used to do all my own customer service and say yes to everything. The ever increasing barrage of emails made me super burnt out and left me no space for important promotional work. Every email felt like an invasion of privacy. Finally I hired an amazing customer service person to take care of my customers (she does a better job that I ever did), and I’ve freed up my energy to do things like Periscope or interacting on social media. Find the things in your business that tire you out, and outsource them.
Self promotion tip for introverts #5: Batch your content when you don’t feel like being ‘out there.’
Derek Sivers – Writer, Entrepreneur, Programmer, Musician, Founder of CD Baby
Derek’s advice was absolute gold. His email response read:
“I’d recommend one book: Show Your Work. Follow its instructions, all the best advice is already there.”
It’s an amazing book….and these are my favourite points from the notes Derek shared about the book.
[And as an aside, Derek is fast becoming one of my most favourite people online. He is one of the most genuine, caring, accommodating people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting! I’m so thrilled I had the opportunity to hear him on stage at WDS last year.]
- Consistently post bits and pieces of your work, your ideas, and what you’re learning online. Instead of wasting your time “networking”, take advantage of the network.
- You can move from mediocre to good in increments. The real gap is between doing nothing and doing something.
- Don’t show your lunch or your latte; show your work.
Self promotion tip for introverts #6: Read this one book: Show Your work. Follow its instructions.
Dorie Clark – Marketing Strategy Consultant, Professional Speaker, Author at DorieClark.com
- Realize that content creation can be a form of self-promotion. If you’re writing and sharing great content, you don’t have to be out there glad-handing: people will start coming to you, instead.
- Be the host. If you don’t like the way traditional networking events are organized, start your own. Instead of big, loud events, host a small and civilized dinner party.
- Have a wingman. As I describe in my book Reinventing You, if you’re nervous about self-promotion, one of the best strategies is to have someone else do it for you. Make a pact with a trusted friend that you’ll talk them up at events, and they can do the same for you.
Self promotion tip for introverts #7: Be the HOST. Instead of big events, host a small dinner party.
Michaela Chung – Introvert Author, Coach, Entrepreneur and Founder of Introvert Spring
- Show don’t tell. Self-promotion can be scary for introverts, but it doesn’t have to be. One of the first things any good writing instructor will tell you is to show, not tell. The extrovert’s way is to tell. For introverts, showing our strengths feels more natural. Show potential clients that you have what they need by putting your best work out there for the world to see. I know this might seem obvious, but many of us are afraid of being show-offs, so we keep our best work under wraps. I show my strengths by sharing my insights and advice through my writing, infographics, webinars, and courses. For you, it could be a monthly newsletter, a video, a workshop, or a display at a local market.
- Make friends in your niche. Instead of viewing other leaders in your niche as competitors, see them as allies. Reach out to them by offering to help them in some way. Often, asking them to contribute to an article, podcast, or an event is appealing because it helps them to promote their work as well. Just remember that everyone’s busy these days, so it’s best to keep it simple. You’re much more likely to get a response if you ask for a quote for your article, rather than an entire guest post.
- Do one thing at a time. No one becomes an industry leader overnight. Start with one self-promotion strategy at a time. You’ll be surprised at how things blossom from the smallest effort in the right direction.
Self promotion tip for introverts #8: Show don’t tell.
Nancy Ancowitz – Business Communication Coach, Author of Self-Promotion for Introverts®: The Quiet Guide to Getting Ahead
- Ask people you respect, but don’t necessarily know, for informational interviews. These types of one-on-one meetings are invaluable particularly for introverts to build relationships – one contact at a time. After these meetings, write targeted thank-you notes and stay in touch periodically, offering information, introductions, and insights to keep the dialog going.
- Use your introvert’s strength at research to make your written and spoken communications as targeted as possible. Raise your visibility by consistently writing about topics that matter to both you and your audiences.
- Arrive at meetings and job interviews prepared with thoughtful comments and questions. Practice politely but effectively interjecting (versus interrupting!) when you need to get in a word edgewise. Smile, lean forward, put up a hand, say the name of the person you’d like to address, and share your thoughts using a positive tone of voice. You can start by saying something like, “Great point, Andy. I’d like to add…”
Self promotion tip for introverts #9: Your strength at research = super-targeted communications.
Tyler Tervooren – Founder of Riskology
- Stay focused and create things you’re truly proud of. It’s way easier to promote when you really believe in what you’re promoting.
- Leverage large promotional opportunities. Focus on making it count where your voice can really be heard rather than trying to work self-promotion into every conversation whether it fits or not.
- Be smart about your social calendar. If you’re careful how you manage your time spent being social and building relationships, you’re less likely to burn out or feel like you’re faking it.
Self promotion tip for introverts #10: Leverage large promotional opps. Focus on making it count.
Catriona Pollard – PR and Social Media Expert, CP Communications
- Turn the focus around. Being in the spotlight isn’t about you; it’s about your audience. I believe the more we share our ideas, opinions and expertise, the more we are making the world a better place. Know that you have knowledge and wisdom that could benefit others, so step into your version of a spotlight.
- Learn to love networking. Believe it or not, introverts are fantastic networkers and relationship builders. We are great at getting people talking (so we don’t have to do the talking ourselves). This skill is very effective in sales situations as well. Listening will get you so many more sales than talking.
- Find a circuit breaker. The classic introvert gets their energy not from other people, but by being alone, so find your circuit breaker. There are weeks where I will have had my energy zapped by rooms of hundreds of people. I love the adrenalin and the sharing, but it can leave me feeling drained. I live near the ocean, and I have a rock that I sit on down at the beach that connects me with nature and just distils my energy – it’s the perfect circuit breaker.
Self promotion tip for introverts #11: Learn to love networking.
Adrienne Dorison – Business Strategist, Founder of AdrienneDorison.com
- Flip how you think of self-promotion. Self-promotion is just sharing what you do. I always say that for self-promotion to not feel sleazy, slimy, salesy, you need to believe in 4 things: you need to believe in what you do, you need to believe in who you serve, you need to believe in why they need it, and you need to believe in yourself to deliver it. If you believe in all 4 of those things, it will not feel promotional, it’s sharing your solution.
- <Focus on them. People LOVE talking about themselves, take the pressure off of yourself and ask others about themselves, their challenges, their interests, goals, desires, etc. Remove the pressure of self-promoting and just focus on them, let them do the talking, you do the listening. Most people are horrible listeners and are just waiting for their turn to speak. Leverage your listening skills and then provide them with solutions if you are the right fit.
- Be of service. Since you’re not super comfortable with self-promotion, I’m going to tell you something that will blow your mind and go against the grain. DON’T PROMOTE. Instead of promoting yourself, just be of service, add value, answer questions, provide solutions and I guarantee your work and service will do the self-promoting for you!
Self promotion tip for introverts #12: Instead of promoting, just be of service, add value.
Janet Murray – PR Expert, JanetMurray.co.uk
- If you don’t enjoy face-to-face networking….don’t do it! There are plenty of ways to network effectively from the comfort of your own home and laptop – do what works for you!
- Create content that is a good for your personality. For example, if you don’t like being on camera, don’t feel pressurised to create video content just because everyone else is doing it. If you feel comfortable, you’ll naturally find the right medium – and voice – to share your message.
- Make time to recharge when you’re in ‘promotion’ mode. For example, I often feel very drained after attending conferences, running workshops or speaking at an events where I’m ‘on’ all the time. Building time into your schedule to relax and recharge is often all you need.
Self promotion tip for introverts #13: Create content that is a good for for your personality.
Susan Steele – Blogger and Founder of Quietly Fabulous
Self-promotion for introverts may not come as easily as other tasks, but it is do-able. The key is to use your introvert superpowers to promote yourself and connect with others in a way that feels comfortable for you.
- Think like an extrovert – temporarily. There are times when you can be comfortably on the “introvert” side of the scale and still achieve your goals. But sometimes it’s helpful to slide along the scale and act like an extrovert – temporarily.
- Be selective. Self-promotion doesn’t have to be an all or nothing activity. Be selective on the channels you choose and how you do it. That can make it easier to manage.
- Use your introvert superpowers. Introverts excel at creativity, thoughtfulness and collaboration – all great things to keep in mind when you are promoting yourself.
Self promotion tip for introverts #14: Use your superpowers of creativity, thoughtfulness & collaboration.
Kelly Exeter – Popular Author, Podcaster and Editor. Owner of Swish Design
- Leverage social media to create meaningful connections without the need for one-on-one interaction. Social media is an absolute gift to shy introverts in particular.
- Let other people talk you up. Make it an absolute priority to collect testimonials from people who love what you do, and then share those testimonials everywhere.
- Own your introversion. So what you need to do to protect your energy levels, but every so often step out of your introvert comfort zone and challenge yourself to connect with people in a way that makes you uncomfortable (like attending a networking dinner for example). Discomfort leads to both personal growth, and better boundary setting.
Self promotion tip for introverts #15: Make good use of your testimonials. Let others talk you up.
Jenn Granneman – Writer and Founder of Introvert Dear
- Take advantage of social media. As an introvert, it’s probably easier for you to write about yourself than talk about yourself. Did you get a promotion at work? Or is your new blog taking off? Post about it and don’t feel ashamed.
- Seize opportunities. How often does your boss say, “What’s up?” and you reply, “Not much.” Most people are not prepared to fully answer this question, so they miss an opportunity to self-promote. Instead, skip the predictable small talk and say a little about the progress of your latest project or a recent accomplishment.
- Don’t think of self-promotion as bragging. Introverts tend to dislike talking about themselves. Self-promotion is even harder because it feels showy or smarmy. But the reality is, your boss (or your fans or customers) need to hear what you’re working on and what you’ve accomplished. Instead of thinking you need to “sell” yourself, just talk about the facts. Give an update or tell a story about a problem you solved. You don’t have to feel dirty about facts.
Self promotion tip for introverts #16: Don’t think you need to “sell”, just talk about the facts.
Andy Mort – Songwriter and Blogger at Sheep Dressed Like Wolves
- Promote others. I have always found that the best way to draw attention to my own work is to shine a light on the work of others. People are curious and will often end up clicking through to see more about the person promoting them. This has often led to reciprocity in my experience. Though never do it in order to get reciprocal promotion…everyone can see through that! Do it with integrity and authenticity.
- Schedule. I find putting space between me and an update about something I want to promote is easier than hitting ‘publish now’. You can find times when you have energy and confidence to promote your thing and cue up your emails, updates, tweets etc.
- Always concentrate on the message. ‘Self’ promotion is a bit misleading. Most of us are talking about the promotion of spreading of an idea rather than simply shouting about ourselves. Always have a clear vision of what your message is, who it is for and how sharing it will change lives for the better. The less it is about YOU and the more it is about US the more compelling the prospect becomes of pointing people towards your work.
Self promotion tip for introverts #17: Best way to draw attention to you is to shine a light on work of others.
Brenda Knowles – Coach and Author of space2live
- Build selective enduring relationships with others in your field and collaborate for mutual promotion.
- Write meaningful and original content. Make quality products. The right clients will find you if your services or products resonate with them, are well done and are unique.
- Speaking specifically for online writers, find ways to republish content. It takes a long time to write quality material. It’s hard to do guest posts that require completely new writing. Find sites online who will re-run your already published material. You get exposure and maximum use of your high quality work.
Self promotion tip for introverts #18: Find ways to republish content.
Jaime Masters – Business Coach, Podcaster and Author at The Eventual Millionaire
- Start guest posting. This is an easy strategy since you don’t even have to talk to anyone in person!
- Make use of paid advertising. It’s easy to get metrics and especially easy to start on Facebook. That way you can figure out what’s working and do more of that.
- Make online friends. Add people on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. – and start to build relationships – thankfully you can do it all virtually – which makes it easier for introverts!
Self promotion tip for introverts #19: Guest post. You don’t have to talk to anyone in person!
Leah Hynes – Coach, Speaker, Mentor and CoFounder of The Connection Effect
- Create connections that matter. When it comes to self-promotion, building deep, meaningful relationships with others is absolutely the fast-track. And although creating meaningful relationships with potential collaborators, peers, community members, followers, clients, and influencers can often at times feel like the slow road, it actually is the #1 success hack we know of most successful entrepreneurs.
- Add value to influencers. In general we think we can’t add value to other people, let alone the uber successful ones. But it turns out, adding value and become memorable using your unique talents and passions is a lot easier than you might think! And if you become memorable, then you are effectively self promoting at the same time but from a space of ‘how can I help YOU’ instead of ‘how can you help me’.
- Build a peer community. ‘A rising tide lifts all boats’ as they say. So who’s in your corner? Who’s got your back? Who can you lean on? Celebrate with? Commiserate with? And who can you collaborate with where you both might serve the same client, but in different ways or at different points along their journey? All too often we think we have to do it all ourselves, but that is the super slow road and it can also very unfulfilling. Create a mastermind group with peers at a similar point of their business building and suddenly you have a meaningful referral network too!
Self promotion tip for introverts #20: Build a peer community. You don’t have to go it alone.
Rachel Rofe – Podcaster, Amazon Best Selling Author of over 40 books, Business Strategist at RachelRofe.com
Almost any type of “online” activity is great for introverts since you can shut the computer off as soon as you want.
- Social media is a great way to get to talk to people on your terms and I know a few introverts doing really well with their Facebook groups.
- Blogging is also great since you can get out your innermost thoughts.
- I know several introverts who have great podcasts too, and as a plus, they’re a great way to push out of your comfort zone.
Self promotion tip for introverts #21: Social media is great to interact with others on YOUR terms.
Joanna Penn – NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, Entrepreneur, Podcaster, Speaker
- Introverts need to balance their energy, so choosing a social media platform that works for you and then using a scheduling tool can be a way to keep ongoing interaction even if you’re not actually online. My preferred tools are Twitter and Bufferapp as well as MeetEdgar.com.
- Introverts are often better one-on-one than in big group situations, so consider starting a podcast where you can do interviews over skype/hangouts. This will mean you can still network but it won’t be in highly stressful group networking occasions. If you don’t want to start your own, consider pitching podcasters to appear on their shows.
Self promotion tip for introverts #22: To balance energy, use a scheduling tool.
Lacy Boggs – Ghostblogger, Copywriter, Director of The Content Direction Agency
- Be yourself. If you’re introverted, that’s OK. Don’t try to be something you’re not; your customers will be able to tell and you’ll get burned out.
- Reconnect with your big WHY. It’s much easier to talk about something you’re passionate about.
- Develop a brand hook. It makes everything from naming your products and programs to writing your sales copy a thousand times easier.
Self promotion tip for introverts #23: Develop a brand hook. It makes communication so much easier.
Lisa Avebury – Healer, Wellness Consultant, Bodyworker, Yogini, Circleseeker and Sacred Introvert
- Have a clearly defined goal. I’ve encountered many people who have an “idea” of what it is they are aiming for. Having an idea and making it a reality take two different kinds of energy. This doesn’t mean you need to be bouncing off walls but if you love what you do you will naturally want to tell others about it. And if you find you don’t have that kind of clarity and passion or are holding back it may be something that you aren’t completely committed to. And, if that is the case, it may require some soul searching. Having a clearly defined goal will naturally put you in the path of people who can help you reach it.
- Think outside the box. As a good friend once said to me you need to keep throwing balls to the wall and see what sticks. Nowadays everyone thinks the internet and social media is the only way for introverts to make connections. The internet has made it easier but staying within your comfort zone often can be stagnating. Don’t be afraid to look for connections in what may seem like the least likely place.
- Be your own best advertising. When I began promoting my business I had badges, magnets, business cards and bookmarks made. I would wear my own badges and leave the bookmarks everywhere I traveled that had visibility in Los Angeles. I can’t tell you how many conversations got started by people asking me what Sacred Introvert was.
Self promotion tip for introverts #24: Think outside the box. Don’t be afraid to look for connections in what may seem like the least likely place.
Katherine Mackenzie-Smith – Life and Business Coach for Introverts at KatherineMackenzieSmith.com
- Stop thinking of it as self promotion. Instead, believe in what you do and consider it ‘sharing your message with those who need it’. When you come from a place of deep service and passion, you’re no longer selling, but extending an invitation to someone to experience what you do.
- Play to your introverted strengths by going narrow and deep. This is an introvert’s happy place – especially in conversations and relationships. Instead of trying to reach 100,000 people with a broad message, get deep and focus on sharing your work with even just one person at a time.
- And, at the end of the day, only you can decide how you want to promote yourself. There are plenty of ‘gurus’ out there, but it’s more important that you go with what works for you. Reject anything that doesn’t align, but make sure you find an alternative that does – don’t just use ‘being an introvert’ as an excuse not to put yourself out there!
Self promotion tip for introverts #25: Play to your introverted strengths by going narrow and deep.
Patricia Weber – Author of Communication Toolkit for Introverts and Award Winning Top Selling Salesperson and Sales Manager
- Don’t buy into misconceptions around the label of introvert, or even shy. I’ve successfully coached both types of people at work and in their business to get beyond the label and under the real person. The labels make self-promotion like a house of cards. And most of them are false. Under the real person is a thoughtful approach to almost everything we undertake.
- When many of us think of self-promotion and selling, negative words first come to mind. Think ‘salesperson’ and what’s the first thing that comes to mind? However, if we search our experiences, we can often find salespeople who made a buying experience enjoyable and sometimes fun. The difference can be for many reasons including a salesperson’s attitude, their training, and even our own experiences. Recognizing introverts have some of the positive qualities a buyer wants, is just as important to accept as is the fact that people are buying happily and selling successfully every day.
- By identifying both good and bad characteristics in self-promotion, you’ll recognize it has little to do with personality and more to do with a person’s ability to focus on others, listen, ask questions and help clarify what someone wants. These traits are well within reach for most introverts. Now you have an excellent reason to stop thinking of yourself as unable to self-promote!
Self promotion tip for introverts #26: Alter your perspective. Less about YOU & more about OTHERS.
Shae Baxter – Content-Driven SEO Marketer at ShaeBaxter.com
- Work to your strengths. I prefer to build relationships with people one-on-one. Having deep meaningful relationships is much more important to me than having lots of contacts.
- Network online. A big part of what I do involves reaching out to people via email. I invest a lot of time in manual outreach methods. For example, I promote every blog post I publish. That means I find people that have expressed interest in similar content and then I reach out to them to let them know that I’ve got something they might be interested in. As a result I’ve developed a small network whereby we help share and spread each other’s content. This has the added benefit of building our own individual brands and getting more traffic to our sites.
- Focus on your own audience. I really don’t follow too many other people now and I’ve learned to filter out a lot of stuff. Just because one tactic or strategy is popular doesn’t mean I need to jump on the bandwagon and do what the masses are doing. One thing I’ve learned over the past 12 months is that if you want to stand out from the sea of same-ness then you need to do different stuff. That means I focus on a lot of the stuff that is hard to scale because in my experience that’s where you start to see real results.
Self promotion tip for introverts #27: If u want to stand out from sea of same-ness, do different stuff.
Sarah Jones – Founder of Introverted Alpha
- Understand that you are experience-promoting, not self-promoting. You are entirely too complicated to promote, and not all of you is relevant to promote in any given context. When you promote, you are promoting a specific aspect of yourself, more accurately, a certain experience that you can provide for other people. I always tell my male dating coaching clients, “You are an experience that women have. Make it a good one. ;)” Same for you. Ideally, the experience you’re promoting feels really natural and good for you, and at the same time, it is not the full and total “you”. Again — you are entirely too much to promote, and it doesn’t even make sense! Even to a romantic partner, who sees more of you than most anyone else, you’re still not truly “self-promoting”. You’re “the-experience-of-being-in-a-relationship-with-me-promoting,” or “self-as-I-am-experienced-in-relationship-promoting.” Same thing in business or anywhere else. You’re promoting an experience.
- Get super clear on who you want to promote to and what kind of experience they want. What kind of experience would they most appreciate and benefit from? For example, if you’re experience-promoting to a web design client, you’re promoting the experience of having his site designed by you — what that will feel like as it’s happening, how he’ll feel about it when it’s all said and done, and the tangible results it will bring him, the finished product. What is it that he wants in each facet of that experience? That is the experience you’d ideally take great pleasure in providing him. That is what you are promoting.
- Communicate that experience clearly, genuinely, and confidently. Before you experience-promote to whoever wants an experience like the one you’re offering, you must intimately understand the experience yourself. You must appreciate the experience’s specific beauty. That beauty comes from the unique quality and style of the result and the process leading up to the result. When the experience you’re offering — be it web design, romantic partnership, or anything else — is truly beautiful, it is an ease and a joy to promote.
Self promotion tip for introverts #28: Get super clear on who you want to promote to and what kind of experience they want.
Tanja Gardner – Copywriter at Crystal Clarity Copywriting
- Recognise that it’s all about energy: the key misunderstanding most people have about introversion is that they think it’s a personality characteristic. Instead, it’s all about your energy levels. As an introvert, you tend to be energised by being alone, and drained by interacting with other people. The good news is that there are forms of self-promotion that don’t require a lot of personal interaction – for example, blogging, writing a newsletter, email marketing, etc. Many introverts find these less draining than, say, social media or anything involving the phone.
- Don’t believe that being introverted “limits” you to specific self-promotion channels: just because the low-interaction promotional techniques are less draining doesn’t mean they’re all you can use. Yes, they tend to be easier, and that may be a consideration when you don’t have a lot of energy to spare. But energy flows both ways – some activities drain you, while others recharge you. Figure out what recharges you as an individual – it might be reading, listening to music, going for a walk, working out, yoga, meditation… whatever. Then, if you want to use a more energy-intensive technique (e.g. being interviewed on someone’s podcast, creating videos, or networking), make the choice to “charge up” beforehand and “recharge” again afterwards with your preferred activity.
- Accept that there’s no one right way, and work with your strengths: introversion is just one thread in a very complex tapestry that goes to make up your overall psyche. So don’t assume that just because most introverts experience something that you will too (or that if you don’t, you can’t be a real introvert). Most introverts seem to prefer to communicate in writing because it’s something they’re good at – which is another reason that blogging,newsletters and email marketing are often natural promotional techniques for them. But “most” doesn’t mean “all” – so if writing’s not a strength for you, figure out what is… and then choose promotional techniques that play to that strength.
Self promotion tip for introverts #29: Don’t believe being introverted “limits” you to specific self-promotion channels.
Thea Orozco – Unapologetic Introvert and Founder of Introvert Introvertology
- Be authentic! People can pick up when someone’s BSing. Plus, being inauthentic is exhausting. Don’t worry about fitting in and doing things the way everyone else is doing it. There are over 7 billion people on this planet. Your tribe is out there.
- Determine your Why. Why are you a business owner? What’s the driving force behind what you’re doing? Self-promotion is a whole lot easier if you’re on a mission. The mission could be related to your products or services, or the mission could be related to your circumstances, like being able to bring in an income while you stay at home looking after an elderly parent. Think of a phrase or physical item that can remind you of your why, and put it in a place where you can look at it while you work.
- Being overwhelmed can prevent entrepreneurs from making progress on self-promotion. First, figure out what is the one self-promotion project on your plate that is the most connected to your Why. Then ask what’s the next thing that needs to be done to move that project forward. Take it one day, one project, one hour at a time. The other projects are patient, they can wait their turn.
Self promotion tip for introverts #30: Be authentic! People can pick up when someone’s BSing.
Cat LeBlanc – Business Strategist and Coach at CatLeBlanc.com
- Stretch your comfort zone slowly. Self-promotion is uncomfortable at the best of times so for your first attempt choose a platform and medium that’s within or just outside of your comfort zone. This could be as simple as posting on Facebook.
- Control the content. By this I mean choose a promotional strategy where you have control over the final cut. Knowing you can change or edit what’s been created reduces the pressure on you to feel like it has to be perfect first time. For me that means I don’t usually do interviews on podcasts or telesummits because the editing lies in the hands of someone else, but I feel comfortable video blogging and guest posting.
- Promote in a safe space first. Worried what certain people will think? Promote in places where you feel the safest first. When I started my website I didn’t tell my family or anyone except my closest friends until I felt ready. Once you’ve made that first step you can expand from there.
Self promotion tip for introverts #31: Promote in a safe space first.
Natasha Vorompiova – Systems Strategist, Systems That Rock
- Invest in building lasting relationships. Through dozens of Facebook groups I’ve met a lot of passionate and driven entrepreneurs. But, in the very beginning, most of my connections were occasional and superficial. When I realized that I needed to grow my network to help me strengthen my online presence, I created a list of people I had a nice connection with and whom I wanted to get to know better. Then, I started methodically going through the list reaching out and asking for 15-30 minutes of their time.
- Make it about the other person. Once we’d meet, I’d ask them what they were working on and if they needed any support around their projects. I’d clarify who their ideal clients were so that I could send them referrals. I’d find out what posts and news caught their eye, so I could be on a lookout for items to share with them as well. I’d inquire who they’d love to add to their network in case I could make any introductions.
- Add value, share referrals and make introductions. This became my way of keeping in touch with them after our initial meeting. It’s amazingly rewarding to make a referral. It is incredibly gratifying to send a link to an article with a subject line “Thought of you when I saw this.” It’s really powerful to make an introduction the other person was dreaming about.
Self promotion tip for introverts #32: Invest time into building lasting relationships. Add value, share referrals or make introductions.
Val Nelson – Business and Life Coach for Introverts at ValNelson.com
- Follow the fun and drop the “ick”. If it feels icky, you’re doing it wrong. You’ll hate it and your true audience won’t like it either. So there’s no point in doing the icky stuff. What a relief! In contrast, if it feels fun, your heart is on board and your true audience will resonate with you. Plus it will be much easier and more fun for you and your audience. Win-win-win.I don’t mean it’s all roses to go for what you want. Imagine paddling downstream with the current. There’s a challenge there, but it’s the fun kind that actually gets you somewhere. No more paddling upstream.
- Let your natural strengths lead the way. You don’t need to put on an extrovert mask to be successful. Introverts naturally have great strengths for marketing, such as deep listening and creating meaningful connections. We tend to focus on quality connections, not quantity. And that’s what works. Wouldn’t you rather have 5 people who deeply know, like and trust your work, and who are excited to refer business to you, than to have 500 people who really don’t know you and never send referrals? Turns out, your desire for depth will serve you well, if you let it.
- Focus on the bright spots and follow those signals. Don’t expect immediate monetary results for all your marketing efforts, but do look for positive reactions in others and inside yourself. If that free workshop you enjoyed leading had great responses, offer it again. Keep experimenting and following the signs.It’s too easy to focus on what’s going “wrong,” or to compare your struggles to others’ shiny exteriors. You’re doing better than you think, and you’ll see it if you stop and look for the signs. It often requires letting others in to point out the bright spots you’re missing. As you can see, everything I’m saying is about trusting your own natural inclinations. It will serve you well if you keep taking steps in alignment with your heart and your natural strengths. There is nothing to fix in you. I admit this is not easy to do in a loud, fast, extrovert-designed business world, so hang out with your kindred spirits who help you stay the course.
Self promotion tip for introverts #33: Follow the fun and drop the “ick”. If it feels icky, you’re doing it wrong.
And last, but definitely not least, the New York Times best selling author and all-round phenomenal, heart-centred entrepreneur Chris Brogan rounds it up perfectly.
Chris Brogan – New York Times Bestselling Author, Speaker, Entrepreneur at ChrisBrogan.com
Instead of worrying about self promotion, I’ve spent most of my efforts freely sharing ideas that will help others move their own world forward. People want to know more about themselves, not about you. So help them thrive. That’s the beauty for introverts. We worry everyone’s looking at us. They don’t care. It’s all good. Be helpful.
Self promotion tip for introverts #34: Spend most of your efforts freely sharing ideas that will help others move their own world forward.
So there you have it! Don’t you think these awesome entrepreneurs shared some amazing wisdom and insights into self promotion and how we can step up and take centre stage.
A HUGE thanks to everyone who contributed to this epic post!
So, what’s the best self promotion tips for introverts that you can recommend? Let us know in the comments below.