Overcoming the Fear of Self-Promotion as a Freelancer Blog

Now that you have decided to become a freelancer or are wanting to grow your freelance business, you have to self-promote.

I know, it doesn’t sound like fun!

A little background:

When I was at my corporate job one of my tasks was attending networking events. I have to attend different business networking events to build the company brand and build the business, I was salary and commission, so the more I sold the more money I made! That was an incentive for me to network more.

This was something that in the beginning was a little hard for me. Everyone that knows me thinks I am an outgoing person and LOVE to talk to people . . . well, inside I was terrified!

I would go to events where I already knew people and they would introduce me, then it made it a bit easier. Over time this networking thing became easier for me because I was promoting a corporate company. I wasn’t selling myself,  I was selling the business, so I thought. . . 

A few years of doing networking events and working as an Account Executive for a women’s online magazine, I decided to take off on my own. I had met a lot of people and grown a large support group, so when I decided to start my own business I already had 6 clients!

Now the fun part

I thought, WOW, this is easy, I am already getting clients!

Boy, was I wrong! It is a lot different promoting yourself instead of a corporate, established company. Over the 3 years, I was an Account Executive and networking I didn’t realize I was actually building my own personal brand. People were doing business with the magazine because the knew and trusted me!

This is what made my self-promotion task a little bit easier for my own business. The support group that I have been unknowingly growing for the past three years wanted to see me succeed, they were doing business with me, referring people to me and by word of mouth my business was booming!

This obviously gave me a heck of a lot of confidence to get out there more, BUT and a big BUT I was ONLY going to events where I knew people. I have found that I am a BIG comfort zone person. I find my tribe and I stick with them. This is a good quality to have, and at the same time, I was limiting myself from reaching new people, expanding my business into other cities, and making more connections. 

I would find new networking events on MeetUp, drive to that event and then create an excuse in my head why I couldn’t go in: 

I didn’t feel well

I should be at home

Oh, I forgot to email someone

I will come next time

What if they don’t like me

What do I say to start a conversation

Why am I here

Whatever that excuse was kept me out of a lot of events and away from potential clients. It took me a couple years to get over that fear.

I finally started finding groups that I “fit” into. Groups that were focused on growing your business, had a structure, not just open networking. It was the open networking piece that terrified me.

Finding Your Mojo

Usually, within a few months of attending these events, I ended up helping out with them or even running a few events. That was my AH HA moment, when I am in the driver’s seat of the event, I am running it, I am the leader, that allows me to have the confidence to speak with everyone that walks through the door. They want to know me, they look at me as an expert and leader.

I already knew I was a very good public speaker so that part wasn’t the problem. I know that doesn’t make sense, right? I can’t go to an event with open networking, but throw me on a stage and I can talk about anything! 

Fast forward 10 years I have successfully lead over 6 different networking groups for different organizations and ran them for a long time. When I moved to Florida it took me a year to figure out how to start a group of my own. I was in a new place with people I had never met before, I thought I could just sit behind my computer and still get clients as if I still lived in Colorado. I knew that I had to start a group of my own because that’s where I thrive. I love building relationships with people, learning their stories, connecting others and still being in the driver’s seat. Yes, I am a control freak! 

You have to find out what your superpower is for self-promotion. We are all going to be nervous when it comes to promoting ourselves, whether that be in person or online. Networking events to sharing blog posts, videos, and even social media postings. We have to get rid of that negative self-talk and just push through that fear.

Here are 4 tips that I have found to help me get over the fear of self-promotion

1. Be clear on your tribe 

When you set off on your own it is important to know who you want to work with, who is your ideal client or target market. Know the type of services you are offering and who they would be best for. Knowing your target market will help you not only find your clients or customers easier, it will also help you find the type of networking events to attend, the type of Facebook or LinkedIn groups to be involved in. The goal with being very clear in your target marketing is anytime you need to promote yourself either online or offline you know “who” you are talking to. 

2. Know what you’re fearful of

Self-promotion can be a little intimidating for sure! Taking a moment to sit with yourself and identify what scares you will help you move forward. For me it was more of what others would think of me, did I dress ok, will people want to do business with me, more of that self-confidence is what I had to get over. For others, it could be how do you handle more than one clients, or client onboarding, they want to work with you now what? Fear of rejection or failure.

One thing I have learned and honestly am still working on, is when it comes to business, nothing is personal. This is a motto I heard on a podcast, nothing is personal. If someone rejects you, that doesn’t mean they don’t like you as a person, it could be they can’t afford your work, or they are not in need of your services right now. When we work for ourselves we tend to take everything personally and that stunts us from wanting to promote ourselves further.

If you cannot face the fear, fear will win and you will end up throwing the towel in, we don’t want to do that. Each failure or rejection is an opportunity for us to grow. Maybe you were unclear in your 30-second commercial, or too pushy in your video, maybe there wasn’t enough value. Whatever it may be, work through it. Sometimes it helps if we ask that person that said no, why? You would be surprised in the answer, always be willing to look inside and make a change to better yourself.

So, what are you fearful of when it comes to self-promotion?

3. Work on your commercial, don’t sell.

People like to call this your elevator pitch, I am NOT a huge fan of that term, I also don’t think it should be called a pitch, you should be focusing on building relationships that turn into clients, not just selling someone. I hate being sold! When you think of your commercial this can be for both online and offline.  This is about educating your tribe on who you are and what you do, but more importantly, how can you help them?

If you are attending in-person networking events know if your commercial is 30 seconds, 45 seconds, or 1 minute, that will help you determine what you can fit into your commercial. I always like to ask questions on social media and then turn that into a commercial, you want to give value as much as you can.

One thing that worked for me s I would type out my commercial and then print it and practice it in front of my husband or friend to make sure I was sticking to the correct time and also that they understood what I was saying! Remember you are an expert in what you do, so show it!

As you become more confident in your commercial you always want to come from the place of value or education and not selling them. Have you ever walked into a networking group or received a message on social media with someone trying to sell you something, and they are so pushy about it?

People want to do business with people they know, like, and trust. Be authentic in your commercial, show them who you are!

4. Trust and believe in yourself

This one seems so easy, but can be the hardest one. This could be one of your fears from tip #2. It is important that you trust yourself. If you believe in the service or product you are selling then you believe in yourself. Coming from your heart and knowing that you can help others will help you gain that trust.

Being a freelancer is such an exciting journey, you grow so much as a person and that allows you to grow as a business.

Knowing your core values and your roots allow that belief in yourself to be stronger. Core values play a big role in your business, more than you think. It is important to be yourself and have fun, you want to work with people like you, and have things in common, similar core values, people you can trust.

Trusting yourself is more than putting yourself out there, it is about providing people with help, answers, a solution. Think of your “why”. Why are you doing this business? Trust yourself, trust your intuition, and move forward, go on, build your business!

Are you ready to start self-promoting?

In Conclusion

If you want your business to grow and be a success you have to work through your fear and put yourself out there. Network, create videos, use social media, brand yourself.

If you want to learn how to create core values for your business sign up for our free workbook below:

5 simples steps how to figure out what your core values are

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Overcoming the Fear of Self-Promotion as a Freelancer

Starting your own business can be very scary in its self, let alone even thinking about the financial aspect, making enough money, providing for your family, creating a new life, the list goes on. As women, we tend to take all those worries on ourselves and that can hold us back from financial freedom.

Kristen Judd has a passion for helping women all over the world reach their financial goals in a realistic way. Learn more about her story and how she got started.

Kristen has a degree in Accounting and Finance from Fort Lewis College and has returned back to financial services after spending some time in corporate America and owning a couple of small businesses.  She can relate to just about everyone’s situation because she has experienced it. One of the biggest reasons why she came back to financial services was finding a company that focuses on the education of money for individuals, families and business owners.  

She is passionate about what she does and enjoys giving people the opportunity to leave their financial strife behind and move forward with a plan they can believe in and can grow with. She is a dynamic and sought-after speaker for educational workshops and seminars.  She has found her home and loves being able to be of service whether it is her clients, fellow agents, or any of her team members. She is the host of Wine, Women and Wealth in the Westminster area and has been giving back to that community for 3 years now. Most recently, she published her first book, “Own Your Future.”  It is the actual steps she used to catapult her business and career with Five Rings Financial. It teaches you to trick your brain into achieving crazy big goals with ease and joy.

Ed has a degree in Sales and Marketing from Colorado State University.  He also has a background in owning several small businesses and most recently being a part of corporate America.  He is a natural problem solver and brings to the table a relatability that is not matched by many. He is passionate about being in a position where he can use his interpersonal skills and problem solving skills to help families and business owners avoid some of the pitfalls that can adversely impact a family or business financially.   He is also excited to get back to being a small business owner himself to gain back more control of his time, resources and creativity.

Connect with Kristen:

Money Secrets
Safe Money Expert – Executive Vice President

kristen@fiveringsfinancial.com
303-944-6195
http://livingbenefitsexperts.com/thejudds

http://facebook.com/LearnMoneySecrets

http://linkedin.com/in/kristenjudd

 

Kristen Judd Mompreneur Interview

 

I love hearing stories of how people got started in their freelance business, what was that final straw, or trigger point for them to take the leap of faith and go out on your own.
We had spoken with Seth a little over a month ago and really loved what he was helping businesses do, the foundation he was creating. Branding is so very important to your success and it is something that can be overlooked.

Meet Seth

Seth is a versatile Designer + Creative Director with a decade of experience that includes work for major brands such as USA Today, Disney, Adidas, Union Pacific, FOX, and Coors.
He started WonderWild with the belief that great design can be simple. He loves helping companies of all sizes rediscover the wonder of their brand and visually express it in ways that create emotional connections and ultimately helps them level-up.
He and his wife of 13 years have 4 bio children, 2 foster children, a dog, a cat and a fish.

Free Guide: 25 stats about design you can’t afford to ignore.

 

Entrepreneur Series Interview with Seth Rexilius {Wonder Wild}

 

Dynamic. Engaging. Totally Rad.

These are a few words you might use to describe your latest Facebook video … but they also apply to Kelly Noble Mirabella, self-described social media geek and marketing consultant with Stellar Media Marketing.

With more than 11 years of social media marketing experience—and more than a few wacky costumes—Kelly brings tricky social media concepts to life through her fun, clear and memorable social media training videos and classes. Long before social media savvy was status quo, Kelly recognized how social media can take brand recognition, customer engagement, and marketing efforts to a radically new level.

What’s more, Kelly has spent the past two years learning to build Facebook messenger bots (aka “chatbots”), and now teaches others how to build them with simple, entertaining and, sometimes, 80s-themed tutorials.

Today, she teaches entrepreneurs, small business owners, and working professionals how to use social media to improve their businesses and achieve their goals. Kelly is known for her enthusiasm, creativity, and passion for demystifying social media—not to mention her playful costumes and thematic presentations. Whether trying out Facebook Live or building your own chatbot, you can count on Kelly to guide you with skill and flair for stellar results.


Learn more here about Kelly and Stellar Marketing

Mompreneur Interview with Kelly Noble Mirabella

Mompreneur Interview with Teresa Blog Image

I have known Teresa and Eric for over 10 years, I met Teresa before I started my business, and through building relationships, we have been able to watch each other grow and evolve. Teresa and Eric are more than just a power couple they have such a deep connection that has carried them through thick and thin. Together they are living and creating their dreams. They are building a company, a community to help other small business owners. Hear more about her journey.

In her interview learn how:

  • Teresa and Eric have worked together to build a deeper connection and respect for each other
  • Just a few of the journeys they have been through and what they have learned
  • How they have overcome “failures” as some would say, or “experiences” as they say
  • How she has been able to incorporate her passion for interior design into her life and find that balance!

Teresa and Eric Photo Credit: Dustin Sheffield Photography at www.dspactive.com
Learn more about Ventre here
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Raised by parents whom each owned small businesses, Teresa has an entrepreneur in her blood. She soon realized her love and passion for design during her education and mentorships with top designers and went on to open and run successful boutiques, interior design consultant for furniture and home décor, and launched Fashion Affair Magazine where she serves as president and editor-in-chief. In addition to managing her fashion magazine, Teresa joined husband Eric as vice president of Phoenix Business Development to help others realize their dreams and grow successful businesses.

Education & Affiliations

  • Fort Hays State University – Bachelors in Fine Arts and Interior Design
  • Junior Achievement Volunteer

Present and Prior Business Ownership Experience

  • Phoenix Business Development
  • Fashion Affair Magazine
  • TL Designs, LLC
  • Ajna Reese Boutique, LLC
  • Reese’s Rocks, LLC

Mompreneur Interview with Teresa Lipsey - Helping Others Build Their Empire

 

Mompreneur Interview with Niki Lopez
Sometimes you think you will be in corporate forever, and then you get laid off and things change! Learn how Niki took being laid off as a sign to become a freelancer, replacing her corporate income and now entering in her 10th year of business!

A little About Niki:

Niki followed a career as a producer and sports reporter for NewsRadio 850 KOA in the Denver metro area, Niki found her true passion—marketing—after accepting a position as the marketing director for a small, family-owned contracting company. Niki was then hired as a franchise marketing consultant for a large national franchise organization, which led her to discover that she had a true talent and love for consulting with franchise owners on how to make their local markets work for them.
Niki founded Focus in 2009 after recognizing the need for a boutique online marketing and public relations firm in Denver. Using her extensive media contacts along with her native-born knowledge of Colorado and the Denver market, Niki has built Focus to fit her original vision of helping business owners achieve their dreams and goals through smart and effective marketing and PR strategies.
Niki currently resides just north of Denver with her husband Cory, son Brooks, daughter Teddy, and her two dogs, Hazel and Leo. In her free time, she is an avid reader, Denver sports fan and enjoys hanging out with her family.
Niki Lopez
Focus Marketing + PR
www.focusmarketingandpr.com
303-949-1876
Connect with Me:
Mompreneur Series-Pinterest Niki
Desiree Martinez is an entrepreneur, domestic wannabe, and Harry Potter junkie known for her social media content plans and always saying ‘yes’ to new adventures.
Desiree is a social media marketing entrepreneur, Air Force spouse & mom, and host of the Marketing For Your Boring Business Podcast. She is also the founder of All-In-One Social Media a subscription social media service focused on helping small business grow through focused social media content while putting military spouses to work no matter where they are stationed in the world. She is also an award-winning social media professional and founder of Social Media Day Phoenix.
She has worked with hundreds of businesses on their social media and content marketing plan since 2009 and has recently launched her YouTube channel focused on helping ‘boring’ businesses use social media to help their message get seen in a cluttered newsfeed. She the wife of Stephen, Mom to Flynn & Harley (and dog Kara), and is currently stationed in Osan, South Korea.

Mompreneur Series-Pinterest Desiree

Caitlin McDonald and Amber Irwin Social Speak Network

Amber and Caitlin are now the center of our interview series.

Though the stories how how we started freelancing differ, the key takeaways are the same. They start with us taking a leap of faith, knowing our values, listening to our target market, and focusing on our strengths rather than trying to tackle everything.

Our ability to run full-force into our new endeavor certainly paid off as we quickly built a six figure freelance agency and even last year experienced a 40% increase in business.

Today, Caitlin and Amber teach freelancers across the world to grow and thrive.

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If you are looking to create a life you truly love, you may start to think of becoming an entrepreneur. Creating a business that you love and can help others is the best of both worlds, right?

In this interview with Ashley Howard, co-owner of Howard’s Cleaning Service, you will learn how her and her husband Billy are successful business owners. They started this business from the ground up and Ashley shares a few great tips if you are thinking of starting a service based business!

If it something you really want to do, just start your business and do it. Provide great customer service and get good at putting out fires as needed. You don’t know what is going to happen everyday, but just go with it!

Learn more about Howard’s Cleaning Service Here

Entrepreneur Series - howard's cleaning service

This is one of my favorite parts of our coaching program, core values! When we start our business it is easy to get caught up in the day-to-day, making money, setting up a website, finding new clients. All of those ‘business’ things. We forget about our core values. 

What if we reversed the order of how we start a business, if we started at square one, what do you believe in? If you think about it your core values are what has shaped you as a person. Phrases or words that your parents or family has been telling you for years, it’s the foundation of who you are and your belief system.

We need to do the same thing with our businesses. Set that foundation, what will our business look like, feel like and stand for? Your core values start with your WHY. 

  • Why did you want to start this business?
  • Who are you wanting to serve?
  • What’s Your Story?

There are a lot of successful business owners that would say they wish they would have started with their core values from the beginning, a lot of them didn’t develop or even think of their company’s core values until later on in business, like years later!

We are wanting to save you some time down the road by talking about your businesses core values now!

Setting the foundation and creating the content. By having these core values in place it helps you and your company make decisions based on shared values. Everything from hiring the right help, to bringing on new clients, creating a successful partnership, etc.

In this blog we will be covering the following topics:

  • What are Core Values
  • Why they are important
  • How to Share Your Core Values

What are Core Values?

Core Values are the base of your belief system. They are your morals, what is important to you each and every day.  The reason behind what you do.

These core values create your vision and mission for your business and shape its future. In a sense, your core values create your businesses identity.

It is important to establish strong core values from the beginning.

  • Your core values help with the decision-making process like I mentioned above this can be from hiring the right help, onboarding the right clients, quality of your products or services.
  • These core values educate your employees and clients on what your business is all about. What’s important to you and how you are different. It goes back to that golden rule “People do business with people they know, like, and trust.” That’s why core values are important.

Creating your core values can be a little more challenging than you think. Especially if it is more than yourself. If you have a business partner or team then we recommend having a conversation about what is important to each of you and how you can bring your individual core values into the business.

We talk a lot about creating your lifestyle, What does that look like? What defines success for you? What is important to you? 

When you are using your core values in decision making you want to maintain that sense of integrity, clarity, and confidence. You want to stand behind your business core values and know what’s right.

Here are a few examples of different words that can be turned into core values

Determining your core values takes some time and thought. Remember you are setting the foundation for your business success. You want to create your own values for your business.

I think it is important to check out other businesses values and see how they word them, but you are not just copying and pasting them for yourself.

Here are a few questions to think about when creating your core values

  • What makes you feel good about your business?
  • What is important to you on a daily basis?
  • What values make you feel proud of yourself and your business?
  • What sets you aside from other businesses?

Here are a few examples of core values:

The Honest Company

  1. Create a Culture of Honesty
  2. Make Beauty
  3. Outperform
  4. Service Matters
  5. Sustain Life
  6. Be Accessible
  7. Pay it Forward
  8. Fun!

SquareSpace

  1. Be your own customer
  2. Empower individuals
  3. Design is not a luxury
  4. Good work takes time
  5. Optimize towards ideals
  6. Simplify

Zappos

  1. Deliver WOW Through Service
  2. Embrace and Drive Change
  3. Create Fun and A Little Weirdness
  4. Be Adventurous, Creative, and Open-Minded
  5. Pursue Growth and Learning
  6. Build Open and Honest Relationships With Communication
  7. Build a Positive Team and Family Spirit
  8. Do More With Less
  9. Be Passionate and Determined
  10. Be Humble

More examples here 

Once you have your core values defines it is crucial you have them listed on your website within the About page, on your marketing materials, your story, your social media, on your wall. These are great daily reminders for WHY you do what you do.

Why are Core Values Important to Your Business?

There are many reasons why it is important to have core values in your business. As a business owner or freelancer, we are our business. It shows our authenticity of who we are as a person.

Core values provide us the framework of how we see our business and how we want it to grow. It also helps with behavior for your employees and clients, setting those standards from the beginning.

This shows your business, clients, and potential clients why you are different, what you believe in and how those values play a role in your everyday decision making. People that have similar values will more likely want to work for you or do business with you. It gives them a sense of trust to help them understand your business on a deeper level.

Remember in the beginning I asked you what success looked like for you? These core values can help define that success for your business. Set standards and thrive!

How to Share Your Core Values

Now that you have created your core values for your business and you now understand why they are so important to your business, it’s time to put them to work.

Think of your core values almost as a vision board for your business. It helps you find the direction in which you are wanting to continue to grow in. Top of mind!

Here are a few ideas that will help you stay true to your business’s core values:

  1. Write them down.  Put them where you can see them every day. Like a daily affirmation. You can create a sticky note that you have on your computer, screen saver, go to the about page of your site every day, somewhere you look at on a daily basis.
  2. Share them. You will have them on your website, social media profiles, maybe even your marketing materials, but more importantly, talk about them. Use them in your networking commercials, tell friends, turn them into social media posts. People do business with people they know, like, and trust, these core values will build that trust. So, get sharing!
  3. Let them be your foundation. These core values are what drives us and motivate us. They remind us of WHY we started our business and where we want to go. They will help us with the decision making within the business. They also keep us consistent. What feels right? They keep us on track!
  4. Lifestyle. This is probably the most important to me, our core values are what allow me to live the life I want. To create the lifestyle that has freedom and flexibility. How do you want to create your life? What is important to you. The core values of your business will allow you to create your the opportunity to express yourself and create your lifestyle.
  5. Apply them. Use these core values as ways to connect with different clients or potential clients. Make sure each decision is based on these core values. When onboarding a new client, does it feel right, do their values align with yours? Use them when you are hiring on new help or even outsourcing, as long as your core values are aligned with your tribe, the people you surround yourself with and work with you can accomplish anything!
How to define your core values

In Conclusion.

Each business should have a list of core values, your core values are what makes your business run. What type of people you want to hire, or work with. This is the foundation of your business. Are you ready to create your today? 

Sign up for our FREE “5 Simple Steps How to Figure Out What Your Core Values Are.”

Core Values Handout

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