How do I sell myself?
August 9, 2010 2:30 PM Subscribe
How do I get better at being a people person and a sales person (self promotion)?
posted by [insert clever name here] to Work & Money (7 answers total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
I want to get better at networking and connecting with people. Specifically, I want to be better about promoting myself and selling myself, as I'd like to eventually leave my job and work for myself, and the industry I'm in (web design) is going to require me to get better at meeting people and maintaining contacts with people I wouldn't normally. And I'm not sure how to do that.
I'm not much of a "people person", I'd rather site at home reading a book or working on one of my hobbies. I have a few close friends but we don't go out together very often, and while they're social butterflies, I generally bow out of any bigger group activities. I also have a weird hang up about phones, I have anxiety issues when I have to talk on a phone. And actually its not bad when I actually get myself on the phone, but calling or receiving a call can be difficult. This goes back to working in a call center a number of years ago. Its gotten better but I still have trouble with it. I dread phone calls. Even from friends - most of the time we text each other. But having weird hangups isn't going to help me start a business
I've been told I'm a good presenter by a number of people; I'm also very good at explaining things in laymen terms; one thing that several non-technical people have told me. So generally talking to people isn't a problem, once I get that far. It seems to be getting to the point of talking to people I struggle with.
I also have a tendency to feel guilty when someone says they can't afford my work. I know what I charge is fair, and I have a lot of skills that people who charge less than me don't and I offer a better result. And I'm not the most expensive person on the block either; I know of other local freelancers that charge more.. But I have issues with being modest and feeling like others should just be able to see what I do is better and I feel like I'm boasting if I try to sell myself. And I don't know how to counter sticker shock (because there does seem to be a lot of people that want a website for a few hundred bucks no matter the complexity).
I have done freelance before full time, but my downfall was my inability to network and promote myself. For a while I had a partnership with a print shop, so I didn't have to do anything to get clients (and it was great) but once that fell apart (the shop closed) I was on my own to hunt down leads, and not very good at it. So any advice, books or other resources on how to tackle this would be much appreciated.