One of the things I hear over and over is that people are not comfortable “selling” themselves. It is one of the hardest things anyone has to do, self-promote. Of course, we know some people who take every opportunity to talk about themselves, but next time you hear someone doing this, stop and evaluate, is it working?
Once you get past the hearing “no” fear phase, you can face anything, right?
Here’s a check list of why it’s important for you to be comfortable at self-promotion that works for you, for those in your tribe, community, and those you have yet to meet.
Your Curriculum Vitae (CV) AKA Resume
It’s important to be up-to-date on all your accomplishments. If you keep this information updated on a regular basis, you will never be rushed to pull something together to submit (which is also where you make the most errors in the document).
It’s hard to write about yourself in 3rd party but it does portray your accomplishments as just that – not self-bragging, which should help you feel confident about them.
Example- What not to say: I saved 20% of the budget of my last feature film by making sure everyone knew their lines, got to set early and were ready to go (blah blah).
Example- What to say: Pre-planned last feature project with cast and crew which allowed for a 20% reduction in the time on set and overall budget spend.
Just state the facts. Bullet point them and if you can use words like – created, reduced, saved, etc… at the beginning it will draw the eye of the reviewer and they will be hit with your accomplishments as facts not something to question.
Where do you post your info? Do you have a personal website? Are you on Linked-In? Do you have an about.me site? You can post a photo and brief bio there along with links to all of your sites. Here’s mine http://about.me/stephaniepiche if you use this in your signature, you can also see who’s been looking at your info. Can be helpful for those projects you are hoping people are interested in having you be part of. I recently submitted for a technology platform funding competition and it was encouraging to see they were checking me out here and on LinkedIn.
Your Social Media Presence
One thing to keep in mind is that there will be people who will search you on your social networks and if they see you being too radical on the taboo subjects of religion or politics, it might not work to your advantage. If you want to, have a channel you can rant on and be yourself. I would recommend setting your Facebook account as private or only friends and clean out your friends list and make a Facebook Fan page for your public persona. I’m not saying you can’t be social, but I am recommending that you think about what you put out there and keep it as professional as possible. There are a few programs you can use to easily clean up your Facebook account if you don’t want to cut people out, the most recommended one is called Facewash which is now called Simplewash.
Goals on Social Networks
Whether it’s you as a brand, or your project as the brand, you still need to find your audience and connect with them, get them to follow you by being authentic and staying in touch. Be realistic in your goals for this undertaking. There’s nothing worse than creating a channel and not keeping it active at least with one post a day.
Tip 1: You can pre-schedule posts using tools like Hootsuite or PostPlanner for Facebook and Twitter. If you have a WordPress blog use the Publicize feature in the Jetpack that let’s you link Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and LinkedIn to “publicize” your posts when they are posted. You can schedule ahead on those days when you have some time and then check your social networks for posts and comments to respond to.
Tip 2: LIKE all posts on Facebook where you have comments and reply to as many as you can. If you don’t, people will stop coming. Same holds true for YouTube, Twitter (retweet and thank) etc… It’s a two-way daily conversation – not a weekly review.
Be realistic and be ‘real.’ If people see your online presence as one thing and meet you and you’re a different person IRL (in real life) it will come back to haunt you online. Remember, nothing spreads faster negative comments online. Don’t be the next target of the trolls who follow you. If someone is negative, ignore them, don’t engage. Unfollow or block them. It will only lead to people picking sides and a future of references forever indexed in Google.
Now it’s your turn to share your tips. Post your comments below, I’m looking forward to see what is working for you.