3 Ways to Promote Yourself without being Annoying


shutterstock_196329677Entrepreneurs are their own best marketing experts. They know their businesses, products and services inside and out, and operate as brand evangelists when they are on and off the job. The passion entrepreneurs have for what they bring to the market is often energetic and endless. This can be both positive and negative when it comes to talking to your friends and family about how you earn a living. On the pro side, if they care about you they will care about your business endeavors. On the con side, they may feel like they are always being “sold to” when you hang out, even if that isn’t your intention.

It’s important to strike a balance between your entrepreneurial energy, and your personal relationships. Take a look at a few ways to find that equilibrium.

Be yourself.

If you are genuine about your excitement, that will shine through. Using cliché phrases like how your product or service will “change lives” or how your business model is the “opportunity of a lifetime” will make you sound more like an infomercial than yourself (and will turn people off with its non-genuine tone). Tell personal stories about WHY you started your business, created your service, or invented your product. This is true when you talk to people in person, or post on social media accounts. What is it about your business that really represents you as an entrepreneur and person? People will connect with this kind of messaging.

Stay positive.

You may experience some negativity from the people you care about the most, but try to rise above it. When possible, avoid acting in a defensive way especially on social media. Deliver the facts about your business and why you think it’s amazing, but allow others to come to their own conclusions. With a consistent positive message, eventually even the biggest nay-sayers will come around.

Support the endeavors of others.

Ever heard the phrase you “reap what you sow?” It’s especially true when it comes to entrepreneurship. If you want people to support your business, you had better be sure you are supporting them in turn. This can be done by simply “liking” a Facebook post about a new job or business endeavor of a friend, or by buying from one of them when you need the product or service they offer. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in our own business pursuits that we forget other people are in the thick of it too, and could really use our show of support.


If you find that you are encountering negativity despite all of these positive approaches, don’t sweat it. Your success does not hinge on the approval of other people. Stay focused on your own entrepreneurial goals and surround yourself with people who support them.

Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources and business news. Megan has several years of experience on the topics of small business marketing, copywriting, SEO, online conversions and social media. Megan spends much of her time establishing new relationships for ChamberofCommerce.com, publishing weekly newsletters educating small business on the importance of web presence, and contributing to a number of publications on the web. Megan can be reached at [email protected]

Website: www.chamberofcommerce.com



Photo via StarttoFinish.org



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How Long Are Your Clients’ Memories? How Annoying Are Your Emails?


I had one of those conversations recently in which a client told me that he sent out an email marketing newsletter every 3 months. Any more than this, he surmised, would simply annoy his clients and do more harm than good.

I guess his clients either have very long memories and absorb and react to every single piece of information they receive by email, or they just don’t get that many emails, meaning that everything that lands in their inbox is a big deal (the last time this was true for me was around 1996).

I asked him what kind of products and services he bought online. His purchases were fairly standard, mainly books from Amazon, groceries from Tesco, hotel rooms and flights from Expedia and the occasional random purchase from eBay.

I then asked him to check how many emails he received from these big name brands on a weekly basis.

Despite his inbox being hit multiple times by each of these big organizations in a relatively short period of time, he remained loyal to them. He admitted they didn’t annoy him and they would occasionally prompt a website visit and perhaps even an unplanned purchase.

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So why would his emails annoy his subscribers if he sent them more often?

Well, they wouldn’t unless they were irrelevant, disengaging or just plain dull.

Now here’s the thing – my client sells wine and can get his hands on some pretty tasty stuff. Knowing I had spent a number of years living in Central Europe, he recently found me the most amazing bottle of Hungarian Tokaji (“Wine of Kings, King of Wines,” according to Louis XV of France). His product knowledge is unbeatable and his clients love his business. Why wouldn’t his subscribers welcome more emails from him?

I suggested he up his game and start sending out (at the very minimum) a weekly campaign.

He now sends every Wednesday, prompting his customers to buy wine for weekend barbeques, parties and other social events. His emails are informative and fun and keep his audience engaged with his service even when he doesn’t get the sale. In short, his email campaigns are a joy to receive and quite inspiring.

And guess what? Because he is delivering relevant, timely and engaging campaigns nobody is annoyed with his newsletters (and this is reflected by a nice uptick in his sales). In fact, to prove this point, the number of unsubscribe requests he now receives has dropped significantly from his quarterly sends (when clients would have forgotten about their previous engagements and viewhis “out of the blue” communications as spam).

Isn’t it time you increased your email marketing frequency?

This post first appeared on the iContact Email Marketing Blog.

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