I was just having a conversation with a therapist friend of mine and the HUGE topic of marketing came up. It was immediately followed by a disgusted face (maybe this was on both ends) and a rejection of wanting to engage in any marketing on her end. Of course I followed this up by asking her more about her resistance to the topic – I am putting this mildly, it was an all-out REJECTION! She talked about how the topic immediately makes her think of selling and schmoozing. She even said something to the effect of “I hate selling myself.”
Ok, think for a second, what is your reaction to the word itself? MARKETING, MARKETING, MARKETING. What is invoked? Excitement, disdain, curiosity?? Hopefully no matter what there is some curiosity. Even something as benign as, "maybe there is some kind of marketing that wouldn’t be repulsive".
I truly believe that with most everything in our lives it is important to be authentic to who we are; our likes and dislikes, our values, our strengths and our weaknesses. Maybe chores don’t count because I truly hate laundry, but I can’t use the excuse that it is not authentic to me – although I wish somehow I could!
Marketing is one of those things where the minute we start doing it in a way that doesn’t fit with who we are, what we like, what we are good at etc, we feel the effects of it! We dread it, we sweat awkwardly through big group meet ups, we have to sit on the couch in a fugue state for an hour until the effects of the horrible schmooze fest dissipate. I can very easily list these examples because I have definitely experienced them!
Over time I have learned my marketing voice is best heard by a few people at a time (smaller groups). I mostly just enjoy connecting with people (not selling myself). I also genuinely enjoy talking about the niche I have and the work I do. When this is all in harmony I don’t dread marketing, I don’t sweat profusely, and I don’t need tons of recovery time either!
So, how do you find your marketing voice??
Being authentic – this is the backbone of our conversation today. It is so important to be authentic that it frames how we talk about marketing. Here are a few things to remember about authenticity.
- Everyone has a different style; this is actually a positive thing! No need to force yourself- now there is a difference between stepping out of your comfort zone and simply just not wanting to do something
- Make sure you’re holding yourself accountable in terms of stepping out of your comfort zone
- Just being yourself is actually “selling yourself.” People are going to refer to you because of who you are- so this is where being yourself actually simply works as a sales approach
- This is super important for the above point of being yourself. Walking into a coffee or lunch meeting and feeling secure with how you work and your approach with clients is communicated naturally so practice confidence!
- This helps dictate where you’d want to focus marketing efforts. Have you checked out our freebie on niche?
- These ladies do an awesome job about using their own true voice to show us who they are AND have an awesome event reflecting that: Improv with GT Therapy
- Lauren Cohen of Hope and Humor rejoices in her voice and makes us all smile while doing it!
- Check in with yourself before and after you attend a marketing event or task
- What did you like, what didn’t you like?
- What felt forced or fake? What felt like the authentic you?
Keep seeking out the good stuff and weed out the stuff that is not a good fit! You do not have to schmooze it up at a huge event to count something as “MARKETING!” It will come through that that is not your scene and it certainly does not have to be :)