I have been asking a lot of people in my network over the past couple of weeks about what their stuggles are when it comes to self promotion.
Visibility isn't easy and as women we have been programmed to not shout about our achievements. One thing I see time and time again both with clients and friends who are business owners is an underlying fear to promote themselves and be seen. The reasons range from lack of professional confidence and not wanting to be in the spotlight through to not wanting to open themselves up to potential judgment or criticism from other people.
The problem is that without visibility we can't make the impact we want, take our business and our income to the level or really share our message on the scale we want to.
Why? It’s very simple - without visibility we can't grow our audience and without an audience we are limited in the way we can grow our business. We need that exposure to move us forwards.
One thing I do know from experience, is visibility can be terrifying to the point where it takes us out of action. This is especially true in the current online world because everyone is fighting for their space and sometimes it can feel like survival of the fittest. Someone said to me the other day that they feel like if they are not creating live video content everyday they are failing. Here lies the problem. Yes we need to push ourselves out of our comfort zone if self promotion feels hard, but whatever we do needs to feel aligned with who we are and feel good. It shouldn’t feel pressured. There isn't one size fits all when it comes to how we build our visibility.
This is when staying true to your own personal brand comes into play and you need to use it to your advantage and market yourself in a way that people can get a real sense of who you are. Don’t just follow what everyone else is doing. Show up in a way which is showcasing you as your most authentic self.
People buy people is a saying which has never been more relevant than it is today. When we have more entrepreneurs, more start ups more brands launching, the one thing which really differentiates you from the other person is your brand. Your personality, your values and your uniqueness. All these things together also create an emotional connection and this is when after consistent time and effort, your audience starts to like, know and trust you.
If you're running an online business this is essential because most of your audience is made up of people who are only getting to know you through the online world. This is why video has become so popular because it enables you to speak directly to your audience.
We know getting past a fear of visibility can be a transformational step for your business and getting clear on what is holding you back is worth spending some time considering.
I meet a lot of women who have successful careers but still don’t fully own their expertise and what they have achieved. I have been there so I know all of these feelings only too well. From launching as a freelancer to becoming a mentor for women in business, it took me a good couple of years to take control of my own brand and visibility. I actually used to judge other business owners for being so "out there" with their glossy brand photoshoots and marketing. Now I see the other side of the coin and whilst I still have my own struggles, I can see myself in a different light and actually WANT to build my own visibility as well as help others to do the same. We are all in this together #togetherletsmakemoreimpact
Confidence is like a muscle: the more you use it, the stronger it gets
My Top Visibility Building Tips
- Acknowledge your fears, write them down and get comfortable facing and understanding where they come from. Can you link them to specific scenarios?
- What would the best case scenario be if you took action - Keep this in mind as a motivator!
- Take yourself out of the equation and focus on the people you help through your work. This subtle mindset shift can help you to see fear in a different light because you are focusing more on how you are helping and serving others and the feel good emotion which comes with this. If you are less visible you can't help as many people, simple.
- Do visibility your way – step by step day by day. Start small and build upwards. Pick platforms and marketing tools you like.
- Try something new each week to push yourself out of your comfort zone. Try something which is directly going to impact your visibility, something you have shied away from before. Say yes to hosting a workshop, being interviewed on a podcast or simply showing up on social media and sharing content which expresses your thoughts and opinions more.
- Create a positive affirmation. I have a screen saver on my phone which says "Visualise your Highest Self and Start Showing up as Her." It helps to give me that nudge in the right direction.
- Remember fear is actually there to support you to push yourself to the next level. If we always lived in our comfort zone it would be difficult to grow. Feel the fear and do it anyway.
- Talk about your fears with your friends and other business owners - you'll be surprised how many people are going through the same struggles as you.
- Get support from a coach or mentor who can help you explore any limiting beliefs you might have preventing you from moving forwards.
- Whatever your current situation if you want to make more impact but are feeling like your fears of visibility are taking over - stop, write it down and address what is going on.
One final note is to think about where you want to be 5 or 10 years down the line and how you would feel if you didn't get there because you let fear hold you back.. This is something which I find really motivating, not in a frightening way but in a yes I am working towards something and I want to make this happen so I am determined to get out of my own way.
How can you be more visible in your business and what can you do to support your goals?