By D.C Cummings for Woman to Woman
In today’s commercialized world, almost everyone is caught up marketing something, their business, their products, their services. But what about you, have you been marketing YOU? What are you showing to the world? What are you telling it about yourself? Are you hiding your gifts and talents? If you have it, why not flaunt it?
When I talk about “marketing” you, about “flaunting” it, I’m not only referring to the external you, what people see when they look at you physically. Yes, your shape, hair, face, skin and all that are part of you, but what really defines you? No doubt, some are of the opinion that what behold the eyes is what defines them, full stop. No, no, there has to be more to you. We each were born with a measure of talent and some kind of gift to use as part of our purpose in life.
While it’s a good thing to practice modesty, at the same time, modesty should be practiced in moderation. You don’t have to feel full of yourself if you reveal your skills, gifts and talents. That’s why you have them. Not to hide them, not to brag about them, but to use for the fulfillment of self and others. If you know you’re intelligent or smart or that you’re a genius, don’t pretend you are not. By doing so, you can stifle your opportunities for progress.
In fact, the whole idea behind marketing yourself is to maximize success. And this can start from things that are very simple. For example, when you apply for a job, you are placed in a setting of competition. You become a competitor against all the other persons who are applying for the same job. How you write, what you write and what information is presented about yourself will determine whether you are placed in a good position to be shortlisted for an interview and ultimately land yourself that very job.
If you know how to market you, then this task becomes easy, even if you do not necessarily have all the qualification and skills the employer is looking for. Your presentation is what will impress them, even before they see you face-to-face.
General tips on marketing yourself?
Communicate well: Communication can be oral, written or by body language. You don’t have to try to impress by using all the ‘big’ words you know. But if you practice good, clear and sincere speech, you are bound to create a good impression. Furthermore, in being mannerly e.g. greeting those you meet, “good morning sir” or “maam” (as the case may be), all add up to determining how well you communicate. If you’re having a bad day, or you are uncomfortable about something or someone in your presence, your face does NOT need to tell the story!
Dress: Dress suitably, dress well. How many times have you heard it being said, “You are how you dress?” Sounds simple, right? Well it’s an actuality. What you wear equally creates an impression as does what you say. In fact, the first impression is created often times by what you’re wearing, long before you utter a single word.
Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and LinkedIn are excellent social media forum to market yourself, your ideas, skills, talent. These media can also help you to get discovered and bam, you’re on your way to greater things!
Networking: “Embrace the power of networking by attending networking events with your business card and portfolio. Networking is going to be your spokesperson when used effectively, for others will recommend you based on quality experiences with your products or services.” (ehow)
Association: Associate yourself with the right people, perhaps people who have similar vision, ideals or goals as you. Who you associate with or the products you promote all affect the perception people have of you. Perception is usually often more powerful than the thing itself so give positive perceptions in everything that you do.
Finally, remember, “Marketing is a skill that takes persistence to sell yourself as a bona fide professional that is appealing to an employer or customer [or, in the social arena, as a friend or colleague].” So market yourself well and set yourself apart from the rest.
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July 31, 2010