The idea of being an introvert has become more socially acceptable in recent years, thanks mainly to the work done by Susan Cain. Many people misunderstand what introversion is, and the image in the press isn’t entirely accurate.
Some people may think that introverts don’t like people, or are shy or antisocial, but that isn’t the case. Many introverts love spending time with people, especially people who can challenge us mentally. We just find that doing so takes up a lot of energy, which we recover through alone time.
Introverts have a lot of qualities that can make us excellent entrepreneurs, but we tend to struggle at marketing our product or business. Most introverts understand the principles of marketing but find the execution of a marketing campaign exhausting.
So if you’re a freelance writer, how exactly do you promote your business, products, and services, while remaining true to yourself? We’ve got several strategies designed by and for introverts that should set you on the right path. Strategies that we use here at WeHeartWriting to help grow our audience and expand our reach.
What is the difference between an introvert and an extrovert?
The main difference between introverts and extroverts isn’t about personality traits. Many introverts are confident, well-spoken, and enjoy the company of others. Extroverts can also be shy, socially awkward, or self-effacing.
Instead, the difference depends on energy. Extroverts get their energy from being around people, while introverts find that being around people consumes energy. Instead, introverts recover their energy by being alone.
Challenges for introverts
Unfortunately, most marketing strategies seem aimed at extroverts. The truth is that to sell your product, you’ll have to speak to people… a lot. Conventional marketing wisdom would suggest that attending networking events and trade shows, or cold-calling potential leads, is the way to market your business.
If the thought of spending the day on the phone talking to strangers makes you cringe, don’t worry, you’re not alone. What’s important is that you recognize that this method of marketing is one that won’t work for you.
The main challenge for introverts is to find ways of marketing that make use of your particular skill set. Luckily, with the advent of digital marketing, there are many more avenues for introverts to use when planning your marketing strategy.
Adjust Your Mindset
Instead of relying on established marketing strategies that you know won’t work for you, start by taking a step back. Identify your particular skills as an introvert and how you can take advantage of them to sell your product.
For instance, most introverts are good listeners. We don’t like talking, which means that we tend to spend more of our time listening and understanding other people’s points of view. This ability to reflect is an invaluable skill to have as a marketer.
Understanding what your customer wants and needs is the cornerstone of a solid marketing campaign. Customers are more likely to engage with businesses that respond to their needs and listen. By building up two-way communication, you can earn a customer’s trust much more easily than just bulldozing over them with hundreds of spam emails.
One problem that introverts face is an almost instinctual resistance to marketing. We don’t like seeing bright messages and loud ads, and we tend to feel that most marketing is fake. To become good at marketing, you need to change this mindset.
Marketing is becoming more authentic and more about the customer. Try to adopt a collaborative approach when it comes to interacting with customers. Use your observation and listening skills to hold a conversation and connect with your customer base.
Finally, as with most other aspects of running a business, try to stretch yourself on the marketing front. Avoid getting complacent and avoiding talking to people. Try to extend your comfort zone a little bit at a time, but also plan on how you’ll recover from the extra effort.
In the end, marketing can be fun, especially when you connect with your customers. Enjoy the process and experiment with various communication methods to find which one works best for you. Don’t worry about results for now – instead, focus on refining your introvert marketing strategy, and the results will come on their own.
Focus on Building Relationships, Not Selling
As an introvert, you probably feel uncomfortable with the idea of selling or promoting. This discomfort will come through in any marketing strategy you use that tries to promote your product without engaging the customer, and nothing is as off-putting as inauthentic marketing.
Luckily, most marketing has seen a shift from hard selling to building relationships, and this is where introverts excel. We’re very good at standing back and quietly observing, instead of grandstanding. We take the time actually to understand our customer base.
Building a strong relationship with your customers has several advantages, including:
- Trust: customers who feel that you have their best interests in mind are more likely to trust you. Customers who trust a company are more likely to buy their products.
- Loyalty: repeat business is vital to the success of your business. Having a strong relationship with your customer means they’ll always think of you first when looking for a particular sort of product.
- Free advertising: if customers trust you and your product, they’re likely to refer it to their friends and colleagues. Word of mouth is a powerful marketing tool, and best of all, it means that someone else is doing the talking for you.
Building relationships with your customers doesn’t have to mean personal interactions with people. The critical aspects of a successful marketing campaign include understanding your customers and their pain points.
Market research involves a lot of listening, so take the time to get to know your target market. Understand their pain points and figure out what you can do to address them. Use your creative skills to come up with a plan and figure out the best way to connect with your target audience.
Five Effective Marketing Strategies For Introverts
The good thing about marketing is that there are hundreds of different strategies to try. Recently, there’s been a significant shift away from aggressive, outbound marketing styles that rely on cold calling and flashy ads, as most people find them off-putting and intrusive.
No matter what strategy you try, be sure to give it your best shot. Use all your creativity, work ethic, and drive, and carefully evaluate which strategies work best for your particular needs. In general, try to stick to methods that play on your natural strengths.
For instance, if you enjoy researching, spend more time on getting to know your customer base. Hold surveys and competitions where people identify what they like or dislike about your product. People love being heard and are more likely to engage with your product if they get to voice their opinion.
Content marketing is the strategy of producing high-quality, reputable content on your website. Content can be anything from a formal white paper to a small blog post discussing your product.
The best thing about content marketing is that it’s something you can do on your own. Content marketing relies on the quality of the content to drive sales instead of communication between you and your audience.
Content marketing is great for introverts since it emphasizes many of the qualities we’ve discussed before. High-quality content benefits from listening and understanding your audience, and also allows you to spend more time researching and writing than interacting directly with people.
It may sound counterintuitive, but social media can be a useful tool for introverts. Social media covers everything from Facebook and Twitter posts to YouTube videos. The good thing about this form of communication is that it’s still easier for introverts than cold-calling or talking to people face-to-face.
One way of preventing burnout with social media is to calculate how many responses you’ll need to make per post. That way, you can work out the maximum number of social media posts you can do per day before you get overwhelmed.
Email marketing is close to cold calling, just in email form. However, it’s a great form of marketing for introverts, since you can spend more time carefully crafting your emails, ensuring that you provide valuable content instead of spam.
Another useful feature of email marketing is that you can automate most of the process. Once you’ve set up a mailing list, all you need to worry about is crafting high-quality content tailored for your particular audience.
Blogging is a great way to provide quick snippets of content while allowing the personality of your business or organization to shine through. However, a blog lives and dies by its following, so you’ll have to engage with your customers more than with content marketing alone.
As with social media, a good tactic for introverts is to pace your blog to control the flow of responses you’ll have to make per post.
Pre-recorded webinars are a great way of interacting with your customers without actually talking to them. You can easily view the webinar as a video project, and let your creativity and intuition loose. The best part about webinars is that they’re a very flexible format that you can do a lot with, depending on your needs.
If you enjoy problem-solving, consider addressing questions from your customers. A fun way of doing so is to create short videos where you answer a short question or problem. It’s a novel way of interacting that doesn’t feel that mentally draining since you’re creating a video instead of having a conversation.
Some Final Thoughts
Marketing your product is an essential part of running a business. Luckily, it’s possible to do so without compromising your principles or integrity, especially if you follow our simple guide for building relationships.
Do you have any other tips you’ve discovered for marketing success as an introvert? Share them in the comments below and let us know what you think about these suggestions. And don’t forget to share this article with other introverts you know who may need a helping hand with marketing.