Nowadays with technology and social media, it’s much easier to make a name for yourself and reach out to a specific audience or market. We all want to be successful, and networking and marketing yourself are the best ways to let opportunities find you. I’ve always believed luck can play an important role in our success, but sometimes we have to push our luck and put ourselves out there.
Here is how to market yourself:
Use social media (Twitter, Linkedin) to your advantage.
Many people use social media simply to voice their opinions, rant about their favorite sports team, or post pictures from that summer trip to Aruba. While that’s all fine and well, there are better ways to be utilizing social media. One of the best accounts you can create is a Linkedin account. This website allows professionals to put themselves out there for other professionals to see. Keep it simple – only relevant information like schools attended, work experience, and a summary of professional experience and goals. Social media is a great way to create a tailored account to reach a specific audience and possibly make some powerful contacts.
Attend networking events.
I know, the thought of having to get dressed up and socialize with strangers isn’t so appealing, but it can actually open many doors. Finding events in your area is quite simple, just check your local newspaper or search online. There are events for everyone – from fundraisers, to huge fine art expos – you’ll be sure to find something to peek your interest. Depending on the event, you might be able to get an idea of who will be attending the event (actors, politicians, executives, etc.) by reading newspaper and online articles. This allows you to get a sense of what to expect. Some of these events might charge a fee to attend, but hey, you have to spend money to make money.
Create marketing materials.
The best marketing material you can have is a business card. You truly never know when a chance might arise to make a strong contact, so business cards always come in handy. It never hurts to give those things out like breath mints, because it might just fall into the hands of someone interested in reaching out to you. When someone asks for your contact information please don’t take a pen and write it on a napkin… Chances are that person will more than likely lose it. Just whip out a professional looking business card and your chances of making a good impression will be even greater.
And last but not least…
Take a risk!
It honestly never hurts to actually go up to someone, strike up a conversation, and possibly hand out a business card or two. What’s the worst that can happen? Taking risks and putting yourself out there is all part of working toward your ultimate success. And don’t be afraid of rejection. How many times have extremely successful writers, actors, and entrepreneurs been rejected? The key is to never give up. To reap the rewards you must first put in the effort.