One of the questions I'm frequently asked by women entrepreneurs is, "When I meet someone who is a potential referral source and/or ideal client, how do I mention my business without feeling pushy?" Great question! Being able to communicate your marketing message with confidence is key to attracting more clients, increasing your income and becoming known for your expertise.
The idea of "self-promotion" or "selling" leaves some women feeling like they are bragging, being pushy or not considerate of others. It can create anxiety and fear which in turn keeps you stuck and unable to reach your business goals. Women are nurturers by nature and the thought of putting their needs in front of someone else's may feel unnatural.
I understand the feeling (I've experienced it too), however if you are determined to achieve your business goals, it's essential you communicate your message about what you have to offer and how you help people. Do so often and to as many people as possible (otherwise, you will remain the best kept secret in town which in this case, won't serve you). People are super busy and can't read your mind so it's up to you to take on the responsibility of creating interest in how you support people with your product or service.
When I have an opportunity to share how I support women entrepreneurs, I use the R&R approach (Relationship + Results). It feels both authentic and comfortable for me and I think it will for you, too.
- Cultivate a Relationship - Whether I meet someone at a networking event, through social media or through a mutual friend, my first desire is to build a relationship and discover how I can be of service. I'm truly interested in people and enjoy learning about others. My goal is to find a common ground with people and if I can offer some advice or perspective on their current situation, I'll share it with them right away. This is a good time to showcase your expertise and also show the other person you are genuinely listening to them.
- Share Results - When it's your turn to share more about who you are and what you do (if you've truly shown an interest in the other person, this happens organically) share the results you've had with your clients through telling stories. Storytelling is engaging. People will lean in and listen intently to what you have to say. Rather than talking about the name of your company and the services you offer, concentrate on someone you've worked with that had award-winning results. Talk about where this person was when they first began to work with you and the benefits or transformation they received after working with you.
This approach takes away the "heavy" feeling of self-promotion that women sometimes experience. It has a feminine feel to it. Women create relationships better than anyone I know and sharing the results others have had when they work with you eliminates anxiety.
I invite you to get out of the office today and try the R&R approach. It's simple, easy and feels authentic to women entrepreneurs.