Self-Promotion: You’re Doing It Wrong (and it’s costing you money)

The number one marketing mistake that I see business owners make is underdoing it.

“Underdoing” your marketing means posting one link to your blog post, or sending one email, or tweeting once about your webinar…and that’s it. You never mention it again.

Yes, some businesses and people on Twitter and a few friends you have on Facebook are OVERDOING IT. Today they bombard you with a stream of posts about the same thing (oftentimes the EXACT SAME text and link, over and over again), and start right back up again tomorrow.

But guess what? Self-promotion is actually hard to overdo. Most people are underdoing it so much that they’ll never come close to annoyance-level promotion.

It’s time you step up your level of promotion, because it can seriously make the difference between a slow revenue month and the bucks rolling into your bank account!

Here’s How “Underdoing It” Is Costing You Money

You have a two-week enrollment or purchase period for your new product or service. You tweet about it twice: once a week during those two weeks. How many people see each tweet? It does depend somewhat on the number of followers, but even if thousands of people follow you, only a handful are going to see – I mean really see, read, and click on – each tweet. Twitter is the Grand Canyon of content – there are just too many tweets (and links) to engage with. Chances are more than 90% of your audience didn’t see either of your tweets, so they couldn’t have clicked on the link and they definitely didn’t buy anything.

Twitter Birds Flying

That is money lost, and not because your sales page isn’t good enough. It’s because not enough people actually laid eyes on your sales page.

WARNING: Facebook may seem like a more intimate social network where more of your fans end up seeing your posts, but one look at the numbers in Insights will tell you different. You can see exactly what percent of people who like your Facebook Page view each one of your posts. Facebook marketers everywhere were shocked when Facebook announced that the average post was only seen by about about 17% of the fans of that page. Unfortunately, that number may be even lower depending on the history of your posts.

“But I don’t want to be spammy and post all about me and my offerings 24/7. That’s so ‘sales-y’. It’s not the image I want to project.”

Sorry but that’s just a fancy way to say “I’m afraid that if I self-promote too often, it’ll look like spam, people will stop paying attention altogether and THEN what do I do??”

Why Your Fans Don’t Always Know What You’re Selling

This is the real fear people have when it comes to self-promotion: the possibility that putting your message out there could actually have a NEGATIVE impact on your business.

But it’s this goal of not being spammy, not offending other people, not pushing people away, that actually KEEPS people away.  This attempt to “protect your image” DOES NOT fill your business’s bank account.

When you realize that someone scrolling past your link or your tweet does NOT equal engaged reading, you’ll see just how much you’re under-promoting your offering.

Did you know that the more often you put a message in front of someone, the better chance that they will accept it and actually read that message? So if I see a link to your latest blog post more than once, I’m more likely to click on that link to read your post. You’ll get my attention by reminding me who you are and what you do.

My New Promotion Formula

I’ve started following Derek Halpern’s 80/20 rule: spend 20% of your time on producing content and 80% of your time promoting it. Yes! 80%. I admit that I was surprised by such a high number, too. I had been operating under the assumption that consistently updating my business’s content (webinars, cheatsheets, blog posts, you name it) was the key to driving lots and lots of good traffic to my site. But think about it: how am I going to boost my numbers if no one actually knows there’s new and interesting content to be consumed?

So my team and I decided to follow Derek’s advice and shift the focus to promoting our content more than actually producing it. Still skeptical? The traffic to my blog has actually increased, even though we’ve got fewer new posts that go live every week!

So drop the story of you “not being too sales-y”. Get your message out there, over and over again. You can automate this stuff so that you have updates going out about your new blog post for the next 6 months.

Promote yourself, and do it often. Your revenue report will thank you.

What Do You Think?

I would love to hear about your struggles and/or breakthroughs about promoting yourself. Do you worry about spamming your peeps? Have you found the perfect balance of getting your message out there without overdoing it? Let me know in the comments below – your experiences can absolutely help other entrepreneurs working on mastering that fine line!