I had an e-mail from a friend of mine who is building a real estate business in Southern California. She is doing fantastically well, but after running another type of business on her own for years, it is a whole new culture and process and type of business. She’s definitely still learning the ropes. She was sharing with me that her biggest “challenge” is self promotion. To quote her comment she referred to herself as an “anti-bragger in a sea of braggers.” Meaning that she’s feeling as though it goes against her personal nature to really talk herself up!
Having spent several years working in marketing and public relations, she is definitely not the first person I’ve heard admit to having a hard time “blowing their own horn.” We’re really trained to learn to be humble and keep a low profile so marketing and “bragging” up our accomplishments and capabilities doesn’t always come naturally. But, marketing is important! How else will people know who you are and what you’re up to as you strive to build a business!
I think it really helps just knowing that self-promotion is a problem for you. Acknowledging that you feel uncomfortable or aren’t sure exactly how to go about bragging in a sea of braggers is a good step in figuring out what to do about it. Next, if you can think of it as focusing on YOUR BUSINESS instead of on you personally, it might help you to separate your feelings about bragging for yourself from promoting your home business. Some people find it helps to take a class or join a leads group (or attend a marketing or public relations workshop at a community college or chamber of commerce) in order to help learn how to professionalize the promotion process.
Try to keep in mind that marketing and business promotion are just another part of business–it’s not necessarily a reflection on your personality or character. Of course, it would be fabulous if business and prospects would find their way to your door and come knocking without your having to do anything at all–but that’s not how things happen in the business world. You have to get your message out there in order to compete. Like my friend, at some point, one just has to bite the bullet and let people know what a fabulous find you really are!