If you have listened to Donald Trump at a rally or doing a press interview, you hear him talking about himself -- a lot. He is quick to point out all the wins and great things he’s done. He won’t let you walk away without knowing how great he is. As an entrepreneur listening to him self-promote, it makes me cringe a little.
There is a good way and a terrible way to self-promote your business and your expertise as an entrepreneur. Most of what we typically see is not self-promotion in a way that connects with new leads and turns them into customers. Self-promotion used correctly can show new leads what your business offers and how that can benefit that person’s life. Here are four ways to self-promote without sounding like you’re a one-person pitch fest -- like Donald Trump does.
1. Highlight the results/wins your clients are getting.
It’s one thing to talk about how good you are or what you are accomplishing. Promotion goes into a different place in a person's mind when they see you have duplicated your success. There are many entrepreneurs who have achieved success, but can’t duplicate the process in others because their strategies are unique to them. When you can show that your strategies work for more than just yourself, you stand out from all the noise that is currently in the market.
When you promote, let it be the great results your clients are getting. Make your promotion about them and the strategies -- take yourself out of the equation. How much more appealing would Donald Trump be if he talked about those who have gotten value from his books, speeches and training instead of always talking about himself? When you talk about others more than yourself, you are more appealing to those who might do business with you.
2. Offer a lesson each time you share one of your wins.
Pride and bragging are the fast ways to repel someone. Yes, you want to share great accomplishments, but at the end of the day, people want to know what’s in it for them. One way to satisfy your desire to share and what people are looking for is to share lessons with your wins. If you accomplished something important, tell those in your tribe a few of the strategies you used. Tell them what you learned on the journey to make a dream into your reality. Let them know about the obstacles you encountered.
The more they can feel and see the process, the more interested and understanding they’ll be about you promoting yourself. Share the win and then a lesson. Give them something they can use to create the same kind of success in their life and with their business.
3. Share the bad as much as you share the good.
I’ve been going through some of Donald Trump’s speeches, and I haven't found one where he talks about his struggles. It’s not just Donald Trump; there are many who want to give us a filtered view of their successes. All you see is the good and the wins, you never see the struggle or pain it took to accomplish their success.
People respect and connect with the real thing. We all know that no one’s life is perfect. When you are honest and share those less than perfect times and struggles, you stand out from everyone else. Authenticity in your brand helps differentiate you from the brands that seem to good to be true. Share the struggles, share the losses, share the strategies that you thought would work, but didn’t. When you do, people will be more than willing to hear about the wins because you’ve given them a complete picture.
4. Offer value consistently and maintain balance.
Customers do business with someone they know, like, and trust. You will never get to that place in their mind if you do not first offer value without a sale. This is done through content and information. It can be a blog, newsletter, videos, training, and so on. You offer value that educates and demonstrates your expertise.
You provide this value consistently before you self-promote. There is no magic ratio, but you should be offering at least twice that amount of value you provide to every one promotion. Maintain the balance of value + value and then self-promotion. If Donald Trump offered more value, his self-promotion wouldn’t feel so blatant.
Self-promotion, at some level, is necessary in your business. Your happy customers will help spread the word about what you do, but that’s not enough. You, as an entrepreneur, have to let people know who you are and the value you offer. It will take someone seeing your business, at least, seven times before it clicks in their mind. Use self-promotion, just avoid constantly bragging like Donald Trump does.