Oftentimes one of the the biggest challenges for business professionals can be self-promotion. Many people simply find it difficult to talk about themselves and struggle to tell the world how “good” they really are. If you are one of the many who tend to fall over their tongue when asked to talk about themselves, or simply avoid doing so altogether, think back to the old adage, “If you don’t toot your own horn, someone else will use it as a spittoon.” As business owners and professionals we need to be our best cheerleader because if we don’t hone our self-promotion skills, our team could possibly “lose the game.” Self-promotion doesn’t have to be complicated or scary, but it does need to be effective and professional. Here are some simple tips to get you on the right path.
A Clear Picture of You: I could go on for days about some of the sketchy business profile pictures I’ve seen in the past, but the bottom line is business owners need to put their “best face forward.” Pictures from family reunions or with pets may be whimsical and sweet, but do little for your business credibility. Invest in quality head-shot photos to use in all of your social media and marketing efforts so potential clients can see the true professional you are.
Nail a Tagline: If you find it difficult to express to people what you do in a succinct and professional way, pare it down to the lowest common denominator. Laser in on the core of what you do with the end result being a statement that is only a sentence or two long. Like creating a Tweet, it forces you to eliminate the fluff and find the short-and-sweet message you want potential clients to hear. The ultimate goal is to answer their, “So what do you do?” question in such a way the inquirer responds back with, “That’s interesting. Tell me more.”
Don’t Be Afraid to Toot Your own Horn: Remember the saying about, “If you don’t toot your own horn?” Many people really struggle with self-promotion because they feel it makes them look like they are bragging or egotistical. The truth is, you could have the most amazing accomplishments in the world under your belt, but they will do little to help your business image if you don’t SHARE them. Leverage press releases and social media to share your victories and accomplishments, and allow your business savvy to shine through to others.
Find a Place to Showcase: Many large corporations have “press pages” where they share their mentions, awards and other newsworthy information on one tidy place. Many small business professionals forget to take this same step for their own business success and even dismiss the importance of it because they think they are, “too small to mention.” Your business has every right to share its victories, and having a place where visitors can read about media mentions and accomplishments will only enhance your business presence and credibility, with little work on your part.