Introverts: Ignore the
"Shoulds" and Blaze Your Own Marketing Trail
by Marcia Yudkin
In a survey I conducted of more than 300 self-described introverts, an astounding 95 percent said they sometimes or often felt "That's just not me!" when reading experts' marketing advice. To me, that shows marketing experts haven't been sensitive to the issue of personality preferences when recommending marketing tactics.
Start reading marketing advice online, and it doesn't take long until you run up against recommendations that feel alien to those who reserve self-disclosures for close friends and family members, look down on name droppers and would never in a million years disclose, let alone brag about, their earnings.
It's next to impossible to excel at something that you resist or resent. And that explains why introverts often get into a self-defeating spiral when it comes to marketing: It feels foreign and you flub it. Or you feel inauthentic and your hold-back comes across. Or you "forget" to take care of the marketing tasks on your to-do list.
My approach is different. I believe we should rarely force ourselves to do something that we strongly believe doesn't match who we are.
This doesn't mean turning into a not-for-me sloth, of course. It means starting from a recognition of what you do enjoy and how you shine. Even the most withdrawn, asocial person has some aspects of their personality that can become magnetic when properly highlighted.
In addition, like me at one time, you may have a distorted recognition of your capabilities and blossom as a marketer after divesting yourself of societal stereotypes and reclaiming your strengths.
For example, I grew up believing that only those who commanded attention at the dinner table or in the classroom could excel at public speaking, acting or performing. That was a thoroughly mistaken and damaging belief. There are hundreds of well-known contemporary and historical figures who misprove it, from Abraham Lincoln and Calvin Coolidge in politics to Steve Martin and Meryl Streep in acting to Garrison Keillor and Diane Sawyer in broadcasting - all introverts and all successful in attaining and keeping public attention.
As a coach, I regularly catch clients voicing "shoulds" or "musts" that they've unthinkingly accepted, as well as negative self-judgments that are at odds with objective facts. After we give those ideas a critical look, clients feel freer to choose marketing methods that they can fully commit themselves to.
Are you ready for the success that follows self-acceptance? Are you willing to blaze your unique trail?
Marcia Yudkin. All rights reserved.
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