Select Page

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about growing my business and how hard it is to find the time to market and promote myself the way I would like. I don’t like spamming and try very hard to come up with ways to market myself and my business without having to shout, “hey look at me, look at my shop!” Unfortunately, it seems this does work for some people and I was starting to get down because I felt as though I was being left by the wayside.

A quick rethink about my values and my hopes and dreams for this business made me realise that it is not a competition (despite them being called competitors!) and it’s not a sprint. I would prefer to grow slowly, organically and satisfy my customers instead of compromising who I am just to make a quick buck. Now, I’m not talking about anyone in particular but I thought I would get it out there because I have been contacted by a few people who feel the same.

There are lots of articles about success stories that worked their socks off to get a million followers on Twitter which has turned in to thousands of sales or six figure businesses. They usually end with a plan of how you can do the same. So people try and follow the strategy then get disheartened when it doesn’t work.

No business is the same. There’s no magic bullet or checklist for everyone to follow. If there was we’d all be millionaires.

So I’m going to tell you a secret.

You don’t HAVE to use Twitter. You don’t HAVE to have use Facebook, you don’t even HAVE to have a blog.

You need to do what is right for you and your business. If you don’t feel comfortable with certain marketing strategies don’t use them. Don’t let anyone make you feel as though your business will not succeed without Instagram or webinars, or whatever the latest marketing tool is because you still can. Many businesses did fine before these came about and many businesses will do fine without them.

My tops tips for deciding which marketing tools are for you:

Listen to your heart

If you are uncomfortable using social networking or any other types of promotion then it’s not for you. If your heart is not in it then you will not see the results you are looking for. Spend your time focusing on things you are comfortable with instead.

Decide your limits

Think about what you’re comfortable with and decide your own limits. Maybe you like Twitter but only want to use it to meet like minded artists who also work from home. That’s fine. You don’t have to use these methods to promote directly. People will find you through your profile if they’re interested in what you do. I personally follow people I am interested in. If you don’t follow me back I don’t unfollow you, what’s the point? I’m following you because your tweets interest me. Who decided these “rules” anyway? I also don’t randomly add lots of people in the hope they will follow me back and I have still managed to get my followers to over 1800. Okay so it’s not in the multiple thousands but I’m getting there slowly and I figure people will find me when they find me, I don’t have to force it.

Go back to basics

Try some more traditional marketing methods like gaining free publicity through writing press releases, giving out business cards to people that you meet, and networking at local business events. You can do these things at your own pace. Marketing is about people so the key is engaging with others, adding value to the relationship and connecting – you don’t need to do that in any one particular way. Try out different things and see what feels best for you.

Of course there is nothing wrong with people who want to grow their businesses quickly and who follow all those Twitter “rules” or sending out lots of links to their shop instead of actually communicating with others. If this works for you fine, but it isn’t for everyone and no-one should feel guilty that they’re not doing all these things.

So if you want to grow your business slowly, naturally and organically you can. Your business won’t suffer as long as you’re doing what feels right and truthful to you.

Remember Aesop’s fable The Tortoise and the Hare? Slow and steady wins the race.