Friday, January 27, 2012

How To Promote Yourself!

Do you have a product, service, talent, or event you’d like to get noticed by the public but you don’t exactly know how to go about doing it without hiring a professional? Here are 10 easy ways to get yourself started.

1. Identify yourself. Who are you? What do you do and why is it interesting to others? Come up with a tagline or phrase that accurately describes it in a nutshell. You’ll also want to extend that brief explanation into a more detailed explanation of one to two sentences in addition.

2. Identify your audience. Identify who you want to attract. There must be some connection to what you are offering and what your audience wants. Be realistic about your audience.

3. Know your stuff. What is your business? What are the top key words you’d use to describe your business? Search for those key words on line. Identify similar sites, brands, and people within your key word search. List them from the most popular to the least. List which sources you can actually network with, via twitter, email, Facebook, and more. Know the trends and who the key players are that are making them.

4. Internet tools. Use blogs and social networks to connect with your industry community. People in search of things in your genre will want to network with you as well if you have valuable information to share. Your display of expertise will attract customers / clients / fans / followers.

5. Live Networking. Use events to meet people. It’s especially useful to connect with your on line contacts and their supporters. Use events to talk about yourself, mustering up some interest on a personal level.

6. Make friends. Never look at any similar brands or entities as your competition! They will be your teachers, guides, and inspiration. If you work together, it will only strengthen your position.  Never take things personally. If you approach an entity that is hostile to the idea of making friends or networking, find the next contact on your list and move forward.  But most of all be genuine because today's business men and women are resistant to dishonesty.

7. Follow internet etiquette. Don’t be too anxious or pushy. Don’t promote yourself at the expense of others without their permission and be respectful of their space.  The last thing you want to do is get banned, when all you want to do is be friends.

8. Be patient. Attention will not happen overnight. You will have to work on it over time. Never lose your social presence by giving up. Applications like HootSuite are excellent for scheduling updates in advance.   As well be sure to keep up with your comments to interact with your contacts and stimulate conversations.

9. Continuously analyze your work and stay up to date with the trends. Follow where your contacts are doing the most promotions and people are responding. Identify the status updates and dare I say gimmicks that are getting the most attention.

10. Be Yourself. Honesty and a sense of realness usually strikes a chord with audiences. Carve out your niche. Have fun with it.

Here is some recommendations for further reading:
o Shameless Self Promotion
o Book Promotion for the Shameless: 101 Marketing Tips That Really Work (Spilled Candy Books for Writers)
o Promote your Business or Cause using Social Media - A Beginner's Handbook