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Why does self-promotion of your business often feel so icky? This is a necessary marketing tool you need for your small business success.

Yellow coffee cup on a wood grained table with wooden printer blocks spelling out SELF PROMOTION

Promoting yourself or your business might make you feel icky or cringe, but it's a crucial marketing tool. Felt like it’s bragging,  just not your style, or you battle imposter syndrome when you have to do it? Yeah, we've all been there too. I’m here today to help you push through the discomfort of self-promotion because you truly need embrace it for your small business' success.

 

Here are 5 reasons why self-promotion will help your small business succeed:

 

  1. Become Top of Mind: In a competitive market, standing out is crucial. Self-promotion ensures your business is seen and remembered, especially when you highlight the unique benefits you brand, product or service offers. Familiarity builds trust, making your business the go-to choice when customers are ready to buy.

  2. Repetition Builds Credibility: Your audience doesn't memorize everything you share as much as we think they do. Sharing your message again and again, builds credibility and showcases your expertise in your industry. Consistency is also key to establishing yourself as a reliable brand. 

  3. Frequency Matters: Cutting through the noise requires repetition. Did you know that it takes 8-12 exposures for a message to truly sink in. Be mindfully persistent. There’s a lot of noise out there, but the message that cuts through the clutter.

  4. Build Your Brand Identity: Consistent messaging, positioning and self-promotion can help shape your brand identity. Craft messages that communicate the value you bring to a prospects’ business or industry and position you as the knowledgeable resource . This will help attract more customers and increase revenue.

  5. Attract Customers, Collaborators, Partners and More: Sometimes you can’t go it alone, and self-promotion can lead to networking opportunities, collaborations and even referrals. And who doesn’t love a good referral,  

 

Now, how do you promote without sounding like you're bragging? Avoid the humble brag and accept authenticity.  Here are some my tips:

 

  1. Ditch Perfection: Don’t tread into the “ick, instead craft your promotions with an eye towards authenticity and your target audience’s needs. Tell the story of your value. It doesn't have to be flawless the first time; you can refine it over time. 

  2. Focus on Value to Your Target Audience: Skip the hard sell and focus on how your business benefits your audience. Craft messages that convey your understanding of their needs and how you can make their jobs easier. Steer clear of self-centered content.

  3. Don’t Brand Yourself an Expert: Claiming to be an expert can come off as bragging and that you have nothing left to learn. If you must quantify your expertise, try “thought leader" instead. Personally, I’d avoid both altogether.

  4. Strategically Share: Don't overwhelm with frequent self-promotion. Employ a 4:1 ratio strategy – for every five posts, one can be about self-promotion. This keeps your content diverse and avoids coming across as pushy.

 

I understand that self-promotion can feel uncomfortable, but it's a must-have marketing tool to establish your brand, build credibility and your network, and most importantly attract customers. The key is to do it authentically, focusing on your prospects' needs rather than your own. Let’s kick the "ick" to the curb, and embrace the power of authentic self-promotion.

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