Toot your own horn!
You know what they say, “If you’re any good, people will brag about you or recommend you and your services. Let other people toot your horn! You don’t need to do it!”
But what if you're just starting out in business?!
We see all these self-proclaimed Instagrammers and YouTube stars, with their thousands or millions of followers. Then we roll our eyes in the backs of our heads and say, “Gawd! I wish I could do or be that!”
How does one start?
First step: Toot your own horn! Speak up! Shout it from the rooftops!
You must become your own walking-talking billboard. You don’t need a marketing degree. I don’t even have one. But what I do know is this: if I am not talking about what I do, how will anyone else know what I do?
Granted, most people we see with millions of followers have a marketing team or staff to help keep up with it all. Let’s be real - it’s exciting and exhausting at the same time.
What to post?
When to post?
Where to post?
Who do you tag? What do you hashtag?
Do you comment?
Do you tag in your comment?
The list is extensive; choices and decisions are exhausting when you are first starting out. I was right there with you! Feeling a bit overwhelmed by algorithms? Who knew?! I wasn’t taught about algorithms in school!
Drawing from my experience, I developed my simple “Social Media Rules”:
Rule #1. Your first “social media” platform is YOU.
The one with the heartbeat! Find local Meetup groups, Chamber of Commerce Mixers, Business networking events. Find them. Attend them. And be your own walking-talking billboard.
Rule #2. Know your “Elevator Pitch”
Know it by heart! If you don’t know what that is web search it- now - before you read another word.
Rule #3. Go back to Rule #2, because I know you didn’t!
Rule #4. Grow your audience in the social media platform that you know.
This will boost your confidence and you will gain more followers. Using the app you know reduces the frustration in trying to use a new one! Let’s face it: get frustrated a few times and you will give up! Don’t do that! Use what you know!
Rule #5. Social Media - Only use 1-2 platforms.
This might sound contrary to everything else you have heard, but trust me! Master one. Then add another. Reason for being: your followers.(See Rule #6)
Rule #6. Keep it Fresh!
Post one topic in one social media platform, and once you master that app, post a different topic on a second platform. If you want to be super daring, post a third topic on a third platform. This will keep your material fresh! “Cross posting” (meaning its posted on Facebook, same thing on Instagram, same thing on LinkedIn) is boring. Consider the perspective of your followers. They see you on Instagram, and flip over to Facebook, and, “WHOA! Look! More fabulous content over here!”
EXCEPTIONS: Special announcements, or special events that you are hosting are the exception to the “Keep It Fresh” rule!
Toot Your Own Horn, Until you don't have too!
Rule #7. Schedule yourself!
I schedule every evening for one hour of uninterrupted, laser-focused work! This hour provides one week of post material. As I am writing, and a new topic strikes my brain, I simply jot down the idea, but I do not shift focus from the topic I am working on (See Rule #8) because I only have one-hour!
Rule #8. Scratchpad Ideas
When an “Aha!” moment strikes outside your normal schedule, simply jot down your ideas (I use my “notepad” app on my phone.)
Remember, the times are constantly changing. Not only does technology change, but the tolerance of readers changes often! Concepts of social media marketing that worked for years, don’t always work today.
More important, remember, with all the social media information out there, at the end of the day, I say, “Stand up tall! YOU are the most qualified self-promotion marketing guru I know!”
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