Let me ask you a question – and be honest with yourself about the answer – are you afraid to market your creative products or services?
Do you feel kind of icky about promoting yourself, wishing you could just create your amazing thing, then simply based on the awesomeness of that thing, word spreads like wildfire, the hordes find you, and you make sales hand-over-fist?
Unfortunately, it usually doesn’t happen that way.
You actually have to – gasp – market yourself.
But what I’ve noticed with many creatives is that they have this fear of marketing and selling that prevents them from getting the results they want in their business.
For example, do you recognize yourself in any of these (real life) comments from creatives?
- “What I’m afraid of when marketing is seeming intrusive and pushy.”
- “Marketing kind of feels like preying on people’s fears and weaknesses and insecurities.”
- “I feel very inauthentic when trying to win over clients – it feels painful!”
- “I wish there was another word for marketing. I associate it with being scammy.”
- “I feel intimidated by marketing. I’m scared of harassing people.”
- “I thought if I created good enough products, they’d sell without me having to do much but put them out there. I’m afraid what others will think of me if I market – that I’ll come off as a ‘cheesy car salesman’.”
As a creative myself, I know how terrifying it can be to put yourself out there and try to sell your thing.
But if you want to make a living from your creative talents, you can’t be afraid to sell, especially on your website, where your potential clients and customers are likely first coming across your offerings. And copywriting that authentically conveys your skills in a way that aligns with your personality and style can help you market and sell without feeling intrusive or pushy.
Let me share a little story that might shift your mindset on this.
Once many years ago, I signed up for an acting class. (I actually thought I was signing up for a film studies class, but it turned out to be a class about acting for films.)
Oh well. Since I had just moved to a new town and didn’t really know anyone yet, I decided to stick it out and stay in the class on the chance I’d make some new friends. (Good choice, by the way. Friends found, loneliness averted.)
Part of the class revolved around how to prepare for auditions. My goodness, but these actors were terrified of auditions!
And although I would never be in their position, I understood what that fear must feel like – it’s the same feeling I had anytime I interviewed for a job I really wanted (back in the day when I was still a worker bee), or sometimes even now when I’m trying to land a big new dream client.
But the acting coach said something to us one day that changed my attitude about “putting yourself out there” forever:
“They want you to be the one,” he told us.
The message he wanted the acting students to get was, hey, those you’re auditioning for want you to be the right choice, they want you to be perfect for the role, they’re hoping against hope that you really, truly “bring it” in your audition so they can hire you now and stop looking. They’d much rather find “the one” right now than audition actor after actor after actor.
Once the acting students let this idea sink in, they realized they didn’t need to be so fearful of auditions.
It’s the same in your business.
When that person looking for interior design services or wedding photography or the perfect graphic designer comes to your website and you just happen to sell interior design services or wedding photography or graphic design services, believe me, they want you to be the one.
They don’t want to keep looking. When they land on your website, they’re thinking, “I’m so tired of looking for someone to hire for this project, I just want to find a talented fill-in-the-blank-with-your-creative-service-here who gets what I need and can deliver the results I want.”
And they’re hoping that you are going to be that person.
So instead of feeling shy about writing copy for your website that whips up desire for your offerings, you can feel good knowing that, rather than pushing something on people they don’t want, you’re actually connecting them with what they do want, in the form of your products and services and the results they provide.
After all, all authentic marketing isn’t pushy or sleazy, it’s simply deeply connecting with your ideal audience and communicating that you can provide a product or service that is beneficial to them, that they already want (or they wouldn’t be searching for it online and have landed on your website in the first place).
So if you’ve been fearful of marketing and selling your creative products or services, I encourage you to try the “they want you to be the one” mindset on for size. You might be surprised by how much this simple shift in thinking can help you in your business.
So think about this now, and share in the comments section below how you’re going to implement this mindset shift into your marketing this week.
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