Thursday, November 3, 2011

Keys to Effective Self Promotions

As mentioned in a previous post, a few weeks ago I participated in International Freelancers Day, an online conference exclusively for solo professionals. Here is another recap of some of the insightful information I gained during the webinars.

Next up, is a recap of James Clear's session "The 10 Keys to Effective (and Ethical) Self-Promotion for Freelancers" (but, I'm just going to highlight a few of the primary concepts). James focused on some of the fundamentals for self promotion—not the tactics, but more about the strategies. Here's a list of some important things to consider when considering your next self promotion campaign:

1. Value First. This is a very key point to make. Be sure you provide value to your target audience before you promote your work to them…otherwise, it's kind of pointless, huh? Don't wait until money exchanges hands before giving something of value. This way you'll create fans and then you'll have a much easier time selling your services. Examples are: samples of product, blog posts or white papers of information, coupons, etc.—be sure it is something relative to your field that is  thoughtful and/or useful.  "Giving is better than receiving because giving starts the receiving process".

2. Build Relationships. Effective self promotion never starts with the pitch, it starts with the relationship. Build relationships with the right people that can help accelerate your growth. Everyone is valuable, but try to find relevant people to you and your business. So, get out there and network! But, remember, it is about making relationships, not just making the sale. Be sure to be genuine and just get to know someone, don't bombard them with sales tactics…nobody likes a pushy salesman (or woman)!

3. Research. A more, specific, targeted audience is usually more effective than a blanket pitch the everyone. Research your target markets, and cater or tweak your promotions to them. Research gives you the content to make connections, and also will allow your promotions to create a maximum effect in a minimal amount of time.

After you've worked on the above three tasks, be sure to make your self promotions simple, yet powerful—and, focus on being consistent! And remember, this is a cyclical process that you will have to do over and over again throughout the course of your business, it's not a one time thing and you're done. In order to grow your business, you need to grow with your business!

Do you have any advice on good self promotion? I'd love to hear it!

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