Everyone, like it or not, is “in sales.” No matter what your career, no matter what your industry, your entire day is based around persuading other people to help you or do things for you. You are always selling.
Jason Leister, writing for Early to Rise magazine, shares some interesting points about selling yourself.
For some, self-image is a huge issue. For others, figuring out how to effectively articulate their value is the biggest challenge. Still others have no strategy in place to generate qualified leads who might become clients. The most serious obstacle, however, is something far worse.
When you’re in the business of working one-on-one with clients, you pretty much live and die by your ability to sell yourself. Now at its core, I don’t believe selling has changed all that much over the years. What’s changed, with the growth of the Internet and the “free content” craze, is the way selling looks from the outside. And this is where the trouble can begin.
From the outside looking in, it might seem that giving away a lot of valuable free information is all you need to position yourself as an expert and get the clients calling. That depends on the platform you are using. However, giving away free information isn’t selling, it’s simply a way to let people know that you’re alive. But free information does very little to overcome the inertia keeping your client’s money in his pocket instead of moving it to yours.
When you’re selling products, things are a bit different. With a product, it’s a whole lot easier to distance yourself from the product and sell it in a more objective way. When you’re selling YOU, as a professional, things are murkier. You’ve got your personality, your likes, dislikes, life story, insecurities, fears, limiting beliefs, desires and more all swimming around.
Those things can be great assets, or they can mess with your head. What does “selling yourself” even mean in today’s “free content” world? When you’re selling you, pretty much everything comes down to attraction. So you can stop focusing so hard on your “art” and start focusing more on the marketing of your art. Being the best at what you do does not bring clients in if they don’t know you are out there.
It’s like saying the best books become the best sellers, but everyone knows that is not the case. You develop attraction by demonstrating what you know, by demonstrating who you know, by demonstrating what you are doing. People are attracted to people who “have things going on” and to people who “know people.” Think back to the popular kids in high school.