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An introvert, as opposed to extrovert, is someone who is more suited to being alone or in one-on-one social engagements, and who finds communicating with large numbers of people draining and difficult. There’s a common cycle among introverts in the world of marketing, borne from perceptions about what marketing is supposed to be like. They hear about something that sounds like it really works, decide it’s worth giving a shot, and then never commit much time or effort to it, often subconsciously forgetting about it. All because it sounds too against their personalities.
This has happened with content marketing, but it’s a shame, because the idea that content marketing requires extroverted tendencies is not at all true. Take a look at the advantages introverts have with content marketing and how to use them optimally. Compared to extroverts, introverts are just as equipped to reach a smashing success in content marketing.
If you’re searching for the one type of marketing that is least likely to seem inauthentic or insincere, then put influencer marketing at the top of your list. Influencers, or people with a large following that overlaps with your potential audience, are a fantastic option for introverted marketers, because influencer marketing involves a one-on-one connection. You don’t advertise to thousands of people, or send out emails to a gigantic list of people you don’t know.
The best type of influencer marketing is done with people you managed to make friends with just by being involved in your industry and niche. It’s not something that works best when you take the shotgun approach, and authenticity and natural connections are essential. When you build a rapport with an influencer, but not out of a desire to gain something for yourself, opportunities to work together and help each other out will come naturally at the right time. There are a number of influencer marketing mistakes to dodge, but introverts naturally avoid most of them by having reasonable expectations.
Image via Flickr by Creativity103
When you feel nervous about finally clicking “publish” or releasing a social media post to draw attention to your content, step back for a moment, breathe, and think about what’s going on right then and there. You’re about to post something on the internet, clicking a mouse and making a little bit of information swim around in the vast web of data and connections. You aren’t walking around a convention trying to start up conversations, cold calling people, or any of that. You likely aren’t even outside of your home.
The internet also makes it easy to remember whom you talked to and to reach out to them again, so it’s far easier and more natural to follow through and keep conversations going with people you felt compatible with in the past. Instead of having a short interaction with everyone and letting the connection dry out, reach out after a little while and remind them of who you are and what you do. This can quickly turn into relationships with lifelong customers and supporters. Some may even become influencers in the near future, who will help shout out your new products.
While extroverted marketers can sometimes put off a portion of their audience by sounding too fake or “salesy,” introverts have the opposite problem. Out of an intense urge to humanize and build trust, they can neglect making proper contact with their audience, afraid of annoying or offending them. Nail down what your audience likes, or simply ask them. You could make a newsletter that people have to sign up for, or run a private Facebook group. Find methods of reaching out to those who clearly express interest in your doing so, and in a manner that shows how seriously you take their trust.
The main benefit of wanting always to be seen as authentic and trustworthy is that you’ll feel naturally hesitant to do any broad-stroke marketing that doesn’t feel right to you. Extroverted marketers have the opposite problem, where they lack this hesitation and might make incorrect associations, such as doing an affiliate email blast with a controversial influencer who later damages their reputation. This sort of caution must be tempered, but it’s there to help protect you against losing your most valuable followers. Make it a point to keep your inner circle trustworthy, but growing at the same time.
Does the thought of making content and seeing how people react to it really put you into the “alone at the prom” emotional state? Don’t bother! Yes, that’s right, if you work in an intense niche, and making content just feels like it would draw too much of your energy, you can outsource the content creation and marketing to a team member or separate group of contracted creatives. This way, an experienced but distant expert, with less emotional baggage tied to your business, can handle making content. Your only role is to maintain communication and leadership, and introverts are natural leaders.
You’d be surprised how much harder this sort of thing is for extroverts, who often take the “if you want it done right, do it yourself” approach. That’s perfectly fine, but sometimes it’s not the case, and extroverted businesspeople may have less of a grip on their audience than they realize. However, if you’re a hardcore introvert and can barely come up with ideas for what other people would like, stick to what you know best: direct, one-on-one communication. Your writer, project manager, marketer, etc. will be able to come up with ideas and work with you to make excellent content.
Don’t feel discouraged toward content marketing just because it seems suited to extroverts. Like several of the strongest forms of online marketing, using content to draw attention and gain leads can work in sync with an introvert’s natural workday rhythm. There are aspects of introverted personalities that actually make them ideal for content marketing, such as the distance afforded when working on the internet, willingness to outsource to more appropriate talent, emphasis on integrity, and a natural edge toward influencer marketing.
As with any aspect of business, you can succeed by capitalizing on your strengths and avoiding your weaknesses. Master solitary content marketing duties like SEO, influencer connections, and brainstorming good collaborative marketing plans with the people you know. Nothing about the internet forces you to constantly meet dozens of people every day. Introverts, rejoice!