That niggling fear of putting yourself out there. It’s something that prevents many small business owners (particularly females) from marketing their business and getting the business growth they deserve. Here are my top 5 tips for dealing with this fear, so you can start marketing your business confidently.
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How to get over the fear of putting your business out there
This fear is one of the roadblocks that keep a lot of small business owners from ever fully marketing their business and putting themselves out there.
Honestly, in order to successfully market your business, you’ve got to put yourself out there. Even if you’re not the face of the brand, you still need to start building a personal brand. This is where most female entrepreneurs get stuck. They worry about what everyone else will think and they don’t want to be seen as big-noting themselves, or being self-important, but building a personal brand has nothing to do with that.
It’s about building that connection; that personal connection with your audience. Because, at the end of the day, people buy from people, not from faceless companies.
How can you get over this fear and start to put yourself out there a little bit more?
My first tip is that you need to know everyone has dealt with this fear. Even some of the biggest names in business will have, at some stage, felt fearful about putting themselves out there. It’s only natural. By putting yourself out there, you’re opening up the door to criticism and negative comments.
In my first business, I didn’t even have my own name (as the founder) on the About page. All of our email marketing was signed off with the company name, not mine – simply because I was worried what people would think. I still remember the day that I bit the bullet and put a photo of myself on the About page and added my name to our e-mail newsletter signature. I honestly don’t think people even noticed.
But, the one thing that did change was that customers were more empathetic if there was a shipping delay or if something got damaged in the mail – because this is what happens with product-based businesses. People realised that there was actually a person behind the brand; that it was a small business and it wasn’t just some faceless company.
It wasn’t really until I launched Wildbloom that I started putting myself out there and making an effort to build my personal brand. And now, if you are on my email list, you’ll know that every single email that comes from me is signed off with my name. Yes, I do have a team – it’s not just me now, but I still want to keep that element of the personal touch.
Feel the fear and do it anyway.
When that fear pops up, you’ve got two choices. You can let it stop you, or you can accept the fear, look it in the eye, give it a wink and just do it anyway. Spoiler alert: it gets easier the more you do it.
You’ve got to stop hiding behind your fear or making excuses as to why you’re not ready to do it – because you’re never going to be ready. Alright? I’m a big believer in saying yes to things and then figuring out how I am going to do them later.
Webinars and Facebook Lives have always terrified me. There’s just something so scary about being live, online, in front of an audience. Like, I would rather get up on a stage and talk to people than be on Facebook Live. I always think I’m going to say something stupid or forget what I want to say and I’m going to look like an idiot.
But, I knew that I had to do a webinar to launch my Facebook Ads That Flourish course last year. So, I committed to it. I told my audience about it and then I spent the next two weeks freaking out about it.
I meditated for the whole 20 minutes leading up to the webinar and I was still shaking like a leaf at go time. I remember listening to the recording afterwards and I sound so terrified. But, you know, I didn’t make an idiot of myself. People actually bought my course off the back of that webinar, so I guess I must have done something right – and now I’m not as terrified of my next webinar. I’ve procrastinated doing another one, but I will do it sometime soon.
Honestly, feel the fear, do it anyway, and you’ll find it gets easier the more you do it.
Ignore what other people say.
It’s a sad fact of the online world that there are horrible people out there who thrive on negativity. People might leave nasty comments, but you know what? All you have to do is reply or block (depending on the context) and ignore the comment. Easier said than done, I know. But, at the end of the day, it says more about them than it does about you.
People who leave nasty comments are usually living with a lack mindset. That’s the mindset that they don’t have enough or that they aren’t enough. Their negativity is a reflection of their own self-worth and has nothing to do with who you are and what you’re doing. So, don’t engage in a comment war or anything like that.
Identify the areas you feel like an impostor in and upskill until you feel confident.
Maybe you feel like you’re not as experienced as your competitors – and that’s totally fine. You bring some other magic to the party and that’s what makes people choose you over your competitors. Maybe you bring a fresh perspective because you haven’t been in the industry for 30 years like everyone else has. That’s a good thing.
You can also work towards getting over that imposter syndrome by upskilling. There are so many online courses out there and so many workshops – there’s just so much knowledge online. It’s a matter of setting aside time each day or each week to learn. And, P.S., imposter syndrome is something everyone suffers from.
Just be yourself.
So, rather than focusing on self-promotion or selling, focus on being yourself and letting your own unique personality shine through. Your audience will connect with your personality and you’ll end up building a far more engaged tribe than if you just go for the hard sell. Plus, if you’re using your personality and just being yourself, then you don’t have to do the icky, yucky selling stuff that we all hate.
Ignore what all the gurus tell you, just do what comes naturally to you and you’ll feel so much better about it all. Nobody else out there is you, so leverage that and make it part of your point-of-difference.
There we go – 5 tips for getting over the fear of putting yourself out there. Make sure you subscribe so you don’t miss any new episodes released every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
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Have a lovely day and I will catch you soon.
May 7, 2018